In December, the organizers of the Design & Innovation Awards told us the MIN.D. had won. This was a bit of a surprise to me to be honest. Yes, it is a very nice riding bike with some design details that set it apart. But it's not an in-your-face, hit-them-over-the-head style of bike like the OPEN U.P. and WI.DE. which won the award previously. As the jury writes:
"The OPEN MIN.D represents a new generation of road bikes. Far away from aerodynamic optimisations and maximising performance, with its classic aesthetic and minimalist design, this bike is focussed on what's important: having fun riding! As a modern road bike all-rounder, the MIN.D isn't above hunting down KOMs or an outing on the next forest track. The agile and playful handling in combination with its sprinting abilities make it a fun machine on winding roads.
The continuous seat tube, which removes the need for a traditional seatpost and clamp, has a lot of compliance, and together with the 700 x 32C wide Schwalbe Pro One tires and a moderately stretched riding position, contributes to a very balanced level of comfort. The components are cleverly chosen to suit the bike's purpose with a SRAM Force eTap AXS 2x12 drivetrain, DT Swiss CRC 1400 SPLINE wheelset and ENVE cockpit rounding out the concept nicely!"
Anyway, along with such an announcement is an embargo date, today in this case. And then RoadBikeAction told us we won an Editor's choice, and Andy said "just write about that in the same blog on the January 19". And then we remembered we won an award back in July that we forgot to tell you about, and then something else came in, and then .... And by now, I've forgotten half of it again.
Doesn't really matter of course, we're not writing blogs to pat ourselves on the back, but that said, we don't want to look ungrateful either. It's just been so incredibly busy, with demand for our bikes continuing our "regular growth" while supply is getting hammered by all sorts of Covid-craziness. So we get an announcement, take 3 seconds to say congrats to each other and onwards we go.
Nice thing about these Design & Innovation Awards though - aside from the fact that the whole jury extensively rides the products - is that they do cool photography. So here you go:
RoadBikeAction also liked the MIN.D. with its tech editor, the legendary Zap Espinoza, voting it Best Road Bike and writing:
"My favorite road bike of the year didn’t show-up for a test until this issue – and that would be the Open Min.D. Besides spot-on handling, most impressive was how designer Gerard Vroomen was able to suffuse such modern-day performance and technology into a veritable less-is-more, package. Between the 25mm integrated seat tube, room for 32mm ties, small diameter tubes and subtle, multi-colored flare inside the forks and seatstays, the Open checked all the boxes."
And that wasn't all for the MIN.D., because Cyclist Magazine in the UK named it Best of the Best Endurance bikes.
“Its combination of characteristics made the bike a delight to ride around the narrow, technical lanes I’m lucky to live amongst. The Min.D was light enough to make their 20% gradients manageable and stable enough to pilot down twisting, narrow descents with confidence. Plus the often broken road surface was no match for the bike’s big tyres. In short the Min.D has opened up new avenues and in so doing made riding a road bike a pleasure for me once again."
In the better late than never category, we have maybe the nicest accolade of all: TOUR Magazin, Europe's largest bike magazine, asks its readers every year for its favorite bikes, parts, accessories, etc. And in 2020, the readers voted for the OPEN WI.DE. as their favorite gravel bike. To me this is quite amazing for OPEN. Such a small brand, much less known (I would have thought) than the big brands that dominate the industry (and the advertising pages of these magazines). So to all TOUR subscribers who voted for us in this poll, thank you very much!!