With gyms closed and many people exploring new hobbies there has been an increased demand for bikes. One look at the empty bike racks at Dick's Sporting Goods tells you everything you need to know. Inside Out Sports owner Cid Cardoso Jr. sums it up succinctly.
"Can't find it. And it's not just us it's bike shops around the country and from most manufacturers."
Went looking at the lower end bicycle market today. Here’s what you can expect if you’re in the market. Not much to choose from. pic.twitter.com/XbfDhdSoLv— Joe Mazur (@joemazurabc11) May 27, 2020
Producers are mostly overseas and while workers were at home and operations shut down, a big gap in supply developed.
"Especially after a couple of weeks, people were just going crazy and looking for things to do and one of the most logical ones was to get out the door, go find a greenway and go ride a bike. So, immediately there was this very spike in demand."
Anything under $1,000 is hard to find Accessories like helmets are just as depleted too.
"And the other thing that's happened is that people have looked into their garages and picked up some really old bikes and they decided to make those bikes ridable; so right now the service department in all the bike shops is really quite full."
Some riders are heading indoors creating a month's long wait to land a Peloton. ESPN is even getting into the act hosting a virtual All-Star race this weekend pitting athletes like golfer Bubba Watson against track star Allyson Felix.
There's also a big demand for bike trainers which, surprise, are on backorder. Combined with the virtual company Zwift road cyclists can ride in a group and have similar experience. Cid is trekking three times a week with 10 others all connected through the web.
"And in fact, I just invited my brother, who's in Brazil, to join our group so that he can do a group ride with us and we pick a course and we ride and it's almost harder than it is outside and it's just as much fun."
It's going to be a while before road cyclists can be in big groups again so right now just about every segment of the biking industry is looking for alternatives.