George French has been running the G-Sport parts brand forever. When that new Odyssey Elementary stem came out, it turns out that George designed it. Odyssey and G-Sport have now started working together. What it entails, you can read right here. George filled us in.What is the current situation now that you are working together with Odyssey?
Well right now it is pretty hectic because for the last couple of months I have been starting work on the new stuff with Odyssey and at the same time trying to keep up with my usual work load. But the announcement means that I can start to dedicate myself more to the design side now.
Did you ever think it would work out this way where you would be doing work for a separate company?
I never really wanted to start my own company in the first place. Sure it has been fun, but the last ten and a half years have been scary and tough too. So I guess it was actually an ambition in a way to work with someone else.
What will this cooperation with Odyssey mean for G-Sport?
It should mean that the parts get a bit cheaper and become more readily available. It should also mean that there can be things like complete wheels and new products that I just couldn't do before.
Has the G-Sport brand grown over the last 5 years or was it time to seek (outside) help to make it survive?
It has certainly grown in the last 5 years and I am sure it could have survived, but I was spending a huge proportion of my time chasing the details like packaging and suppliers. At the same time I had very limited resources to persue new products which was frustrating from a personal point of view. I think I needed to make some sort of change just to keep myself sane.
Who are running the G-Sport parts?
There isn't really a team as such but there are quite a few riders who get flow. Mike Taylor, Jason Mellers, and quite a few other local(ish) guys. With the change-over we should be able to do a lot more for these guys in the future.
What parts will you be working on next for Odyssey?
I don't really think I should be talking about that too much simply because it's nice to keep it a surprise, and lets you work at your own pace and not get forced into premature release... no one likes a premature release... having said that I have never made it a secret that I want to eventually develop a good street-worthy freecoaster...
With Odyssey having changed into a well respected brand with good parts, was it easy for you to start working with them instead of an other parts company?
I took a chance to work with Odyssey on the Elementary stem about two years ago. My feeling was that they would be cool because of how they were treating their customers, and I wasn't disappointed. Last summer I went out and met everybody and it reinforced my opinion that they were doing things the right way and for the right reasons. I don't know if I could have worked with another company but I knew I COULD work with Odyssey.
Do you work with Odyssey's European distribution in the UK?
There hasn't really been a need to, but I get on well with Mark and he seems like a good bloke, so if we ever need to I am sure it will be good.
Word association:Euro bottom bracket: daft
Black rims: stealthy
Boa brake: r.i.p. I dont miss you...
Ti spokes: no
Wedge stems: I like mine
Triple butted: marketing
4130 Cr-Moly: versatile
Fluted tubing: oesophagus
Good luck with the new position.
George French B.Eng.,
30 Bank House Road,
+44 (0) 114 2854341