Three years have flown by. But do you know the story behind Pro Cycling Outlet?
It's hard to believe but once upon a time, Pro Cycling Outlet was just a rack of pro rider, Koen de Kort’s, unwanted Astana jerseys in Dave’s old Bike Breaks bike rental shop and tour company on Carrer Nou in the centre of Girona. When Kort’s jerseys sold within a week we had a new string to our business and ex pro kit became a cool and quirky feature of the bike shop.
Girona has that “star-spotting” appeal anyway because, on any ride or sitting at any coffee shop in the city, you could be next to some of the biggest names in cycling. So the word quickly spread that we had rare “touched by a pro” finds. Selling top level kit at bargain prices became something that grew and grew.
So far, so standard.
But then Dave went and bought 40,000 bidons (water bottles) and everyone thought he was crazy. (NB If he’d had the money he’d have bought all 90,000.)
People asked, “What are you going to do with all of those?” quickly followed by, “Where on earth are you going to put them?”
Dave just shrugged. “I’m going to sell them.”
The second hand sideline was growing, but it wasn’t until Covid and lockdowns hit that, overnight, it became the only part of the business that was viable. Bike Breaks, with no tourists to rent bikes or need destination services was dead in the water. But the salvation was selling second hand cycling kit online – a part of the business that could stay afloat even during a global pandemic.
Now Dave’s 40,000 bidons didn’t look quite so crazy.
So, three years ago today, in June 2020, the Bike Breaks website pivoted to start selling kit and equipment online.
Like a cycling version of the TV show Salvage Hunters, Dave got to go out with his van, picking up more and more “crazy” deals on the sackloads of pro kit that get offloaded whenever a team changes sponsor or a rider moves.
A year later, in 2020, that small, clunky website, which was only able to hold 200 products, was overhauled, moved and enlarged and the business name of Pro Cycling Outlet was born.
Three years on, here we are. It’s still basically Dave sourcing kit and picking it up in his van, but now there’s a whole team keeping the operation going and getting your stuff out. We couldn’t do it without YOU – or these people…
Our revered jefe and the driving force behind Pro Cycling Outlet! With a wealth of knowledge encompassing all aspects of cycling, his journey began in his youth as a pro-cyclist in the UK before finding his way to Girona, where he raced internationally. While his heart beats for mountain biking, Dave is your go-to guru for all cycling queries. Beyond his expertise, he brings a wicked sense of humor (a quintessentially British trait) and an eclectic taste in music that might just keep you on your toes. As a dedicated dad to Holly, Dave is not only a boss but a cherished friend to many within the PCO family.
Our serene and efficient office manager! With a perpetual smile, she effortlessly keeps us organized and smoothly sailing through our daily tasks. Alba is truly the epitome of an exceptional office manager! Having gained extensive knowledge of all things cycling through her previous work with Dave during the Bike Break days, she is the go-to person for any inquiries about our stock. Born and raised in Girona and recently embracing motherhood, the best way to capture Alba's attention is to ask about her adorable little one!
Our photography wizard and social media aficionado! With over 18 years of experience, she has honed her craft in capturing heart-warming moments with families and children. Now, Kylie is harnessing her skills in the realm of cycling photography, embarking on a gradual journey to discern the distinctions between bib shorts and race suits. Having called Spain home for 8 years, she readily admits that her grasp of the language has progressed at a similar steady pace as her cycling knowledge. Nevertheless, Kylie finds solace behind her trusty viewfinder, immersing herself in the captivating scenes she captures. Witnessing the pure joy and satisfaction on her clients' faces when she presents them with their treasured photographs is a rewarding experience she holds dear.
Our esteemed Head Uploader! Wondering what an Uploader does? Well, Caerwyn, with his brilliant wordsmithing skills, crafts all the captivating descriptions you find on our website. Hailing from Australia, he seamlessly embraced life in Spain, becoming fluent in Catalan, Spanish, (and excelling in English 😂). With an opinion on nearly everything and a diverse range of knowledge, Caerwyn's insights can be delightfully quirky. When he's not immersed in his Computer Science studies, he can be found engaged in epic virtual battles with friends worldwide.
Our warehouse maestro! As the youngest member of our team, she takes charge of packing and shipping your purchases with utmost care. With an intimate knowledge of the warehouse, Cerys also shines as a prominent figure across our social media platforms, showcasing our fabulous kit through modeling. Though originally from Australia, she has found her home in Spain after extensive travels. Recently signed with a modeling agency in Barcelona, you'll often find her in front of the camera, representing various fashion brands during her spare time.
Introducing Katrina, our resident numbers' guru! Once a pro-rider in a previous life, she now plays a vital role in keeping our shopping habits on track. Though born in America, she has embraced Catalunya's relaxed lifestyle for the past 17 years, raising her children and relishing in Spain's delightful lifestyle. With a knack for friendly conversations and infectious laughter, Katrina's spare moments are spent in her garage, skilfully upcycling furniture into stunning pieces reminiscent of store-bought treasures.
Just as much of a character in the Pro Cycling Outlet story is the warehouse which, on the outside looks like any other depot on the Vilablareix industrial estate on the outskirts of Girona.
But inside, it is an Aladdin’s cave of cycling treasures plus a little workshop where Dave builds the bikes because … once a mechanic, always a mechanic.
While the business had to pivot completely away from bike rentals and destination services because of Covid, the shop on Carrer Nou and the former language school above it became too small for the sheer quantity of cycling kit Dave was sourcing from the pro cycling teams. 40,000 bidons just about fit, believe it or not, but once we switched focus purely to selling second hand kit online, we needed somewhere to house it all so we moved permanently three years ago.
In the beginning, when our customers were people who physically came to the shop, second hand purchases were more of a spur of the moment, novelty thing. But we’ve noticed a growing realization that ex pro kit is how you can get the best deal on cycling kit and equipment.
Cycling is an expensive sport, but buying ex-pro means getting a real bargain. That's because not only are the prices low but the specs and quality are top level, designed for elite racing
Another thing we’ve seen change since the inception of Pro Cycling Outlet is the appetite for wearing team kit as a way to support a team.
But one thing that’s not changed is that bidons are still among our most popular sellers.
Here’s to many more years of bringing them to you!