We had the good fortune of connecting with Whitney Allison and we’ve shared our conversation below.
Hi Whitney, how do you think about risk?
Our business Bike Sports is comprised of my husband, Zack Allison and me, Whitney Allison. I’m a recovering perfectionist and he’s more of a fly-by-the-seat-of-his-pants person by nature. We’re both professional cyclists as well, so we’re VERY used to taking risks/experimenting in races to go for the win. Business is no different. You have to fail, you have to take risks in order to ultimately find success. Our risk taking for our businesses has ultimately settled in the middle. We have made it through hustle and a solid network and have chosen to take on minimal investment. We choose risks to take on but have awareness of the potential worst-case outcome and are okay if it happened. Maybe we could grow quicker with an investment, but we also like being able to steer the ship and not owe anyone anything financially. It’s allowed us to keep a wide and friendly network of friends and business relationships, hire friends and their businesses for events, and allowed the business to have the quirky personality we want it to.
Can you give our readers an introduction to your business? Maybe you can share a bit about what you do and what sets you apart from others?
Bike Sports was officially born in fall of 2019 but it’s been a long-time coming. In it’s past life, it was a boutique gym for cyclists for five years, until it closed and was reborn as a professional gravel racing team, adventure-curator, vacation travel host, event promoting, and bike fit studio. I encompasses Zack and my years as professional athletes, our desire for people to redefine their limits and f*** their comfort zones. We are there as guides, experts, and as your new best friend, as we take you through the best areas Northern Colorado has to offer. Covid has obviously put a damper in a lot of what we do as guides and professional athletes, but we’re pretty pumped to not still have the liabilities of a big brick and mortar right now. Racing and events will resume and we’ve been trying to serve our community through bike fitting, support BIPOC athletes through free event entries, and our newest website, Gravel Graceland (gravelgraceland.com), which provides new gravel route ideas for all the people picking up bikes during the pandemic. It’s so fun to share a passion in this way and partner with brands and businesses who share those values.
If you had a friend visiting you, what are some of the local spots you’d want to take them around to?
I would get my friend set up at The Elizabeth in Old Town. It’s walkable to a lot of my favorite spots, but of course they would bring their bike 🙂 Emporium has a nice spot for breakfast, but I love the pastry variety at Little Bird Bakeshop just around the corner. Most of the days would be filled with riding a lot of the routes in our Experiences: https://www.bikesportsco.com/events. We’d definitely go ride up in Red Feather Lakes area where it feels like you are riding on the moon and the aspens are bright in the fall. Post-ride we’d stop by Brave New Wheel, the best bike shop in town, where in non-pandemic times, they also serve up beer and kombucha. Evenings would slowly filter through all the favorite in-town breweries like iconic New Belgium, Odell’s, and some lesser known but local secrets like Snowbank Brewing, Funkwerks, Jessup Farms and Stodgy. It’s always a win when Tramp About or Ramama food trucks are at the breweries. One of the evenings would be reserved for a cocktail or mocktail and charceuterie at Social and another for tacos at Rio Grande Mexican Restaurant. If it’s summer, floating the river, swimming at Horsetooth, enjoying a shady spot in City Park, or discovering new live music in an outdoor space is always wonderful. A rest day from the bike might include a casual spin to LaPorte to visit Me Oh My Pie for brunch, followed by a lazy dip in the river. I also vacation really hard so my poor friend will also probably leave more tired than they came.
Shoutout is all about shouting out others who you feel deserve additional recognition and exposure. Who would you like to shoutout?
My friend Caitlin Bosshart! She has been on this series and is also entrepreneurial, or in her words, multipassionate. As they say, you are the friends you keep, and I am so inspired by this woman. We’ve been friends since before she and I each took the leap to business ownership, so it’s fun to share this journey together.