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“Always eating healthy. Training, training, training. Every day sat on my KOGA for hours.”
“I often hear it when competing: We always recognise you, because no one sits as deep as you."
"I have a different KOGA bike mounted in the shed for each type of cycling and I use them all."
"You need nerves of steel, challenging your opponent, trusting your instincts and then... bam ... go!"
"Even a standstill takes a lot of strength. You have to constantly keep the tension in your legs."
"train for hours each day in the weights room to build up my explosiveness."
"I used to dream about owning a KOGA. But there was no way I could afford one back then".
“Last summer my son and I rode our bikes to Austria. Isn't that great?"
"This bike definitely deserves a medal. So now it's up to me."
“Commuting is all fun and games to me. The wind against your face, fantastic.”
“My dream? Turning pro as soon as possible and winning Flanders or Roubaix.”
“Our clients swear by KOGA. It’s really the case: once a KOGA, always a KOGA.”
“If at all possible I take my bike. It’s an excellent warm up. Waking your body up before the game".
"From a bare frame to a complete bicycle. As a KOGA mechanic I build bikes from scratch".
"From Cairo to Cape Town. The world record is set at 59 days. I’m picking up the gauntlet".
I have been living for this moment for years. This was my dream. I worked hard for it. Going to bed early. Always eating healthy. Training, training, training. Every day sat on my KOGA for hours. I was in top form. My KOGA Kimera too. Actually, it should also have been on the podium with me. It deserved it.
I was a fanatical footballer, till I tore a cruciate ligament. After my rehab I started to take part in triathlons. A complete triathlon is fairly extreme: 3.8 kilometer swim, 180km bike ride and then after all that, a full marathon of 42.2 kilometers on top. I take part in a few of these each year, for the rest of the time, half and quarter triathlons. I recently won the “the Frysman”, the full Friesland triathlon. That was in a record time of 9:21:36. The runner up came in fifteen minutes later. I was riding a KOGA TeeTee. With the ultimate time trial frame. It’s extremely stiff. In addition, the handle bar is housed in an extension of the top tube. This means you can sit very deep, creating just a minimum of resistance. I often hear it when competing: "We always recognise you, because no one sits as deep as you." It pays off: in my last race I rode over 180 kilometers at an average of 38 km / hr. With bikes, you can make a difference. Triathlon is just fantastic. Everyone helps each other, respects each other, you learn how to train and the sacrifices everyone makes. When competing they are your rivals, but in life they are your closest friends.
My name is Ramses Bekkenk and cycling is my life. In the morning I start training, in the afternoon I work in a bicycle shop in Alkmaar and in the evening if possible, I get back on my bike. This routine I have had for 11 years and always on my KOGA. I have a different KOGA bike mounted in the shed for each type of cycling and I use them all. But in the winter we stick mainly to the beach racing competitions. Last year I participated in six races, eventually winning in the overall standings. This included the first race from the Hook of Holland to Den Helder, which is about 140 kilometers long, taking about 3.5 - 4 hours. Thats an average of nearly 40 km / hour. For beach competitions we use a KOGA Beach Racer. The bike we developed together with KOGA. The basis was a cross frame, which we slightly widened so that wider tires were more buoyant and the back fork is extended for greater stability and grip in the loose sand. I think anyone can be competitive with a KOGA Beach racer and maybe even become a winner.
From my third until my nineteenth birthday I was into BMX. Every day I would go with my older brothers to the BMX track in Nijverdal. One thing is for sure: riding a BMX will give you agility. If you always have to compete against your older brothers, like I did, you will also develop strength. The coach of the track cycling association discovered me there. That agility is now very useful to me. The strength too. Track cycling is a combination of those two things. You have to have nerves of steel, challenge your opponent, trust your instincts and then... bam ... go ... don’t doubt it, not even for a second. Full power into the pedals. Man against man. Pure brute strength. Edging in front of your opponent right before the line. Just awesome! The results are three gold medals at the European Championship and one silver at the World Championships. Right now I'm training fully for Rio. I'm riding a KOGA Kimera Track. Extremely stiff. But after all, it has to withstand the explosive power. In 200 meters – with a flying start – I'm at 74 km/h with a gear ratio of 58:12. In this case, the frame hast to be absolutely perfect. I really love the excitement and the speed. My brothers and I are still involved in Motocross. But, oh well ... my dad has sold my Motocross bike now. The distraction would have been otherwise too great. So, for now, I'll stick to my KOGA. Rio, here I come...
How do you become a track cyclist? I'm from Vianen in the Netherlands. When I was six, I started playing hockey until I was fourteen. I also started road cycling at the Jan van Arckel cycling club in Gorkum. But in the road races I never did very well. The other guys just trained harder. That was until the day we had a training on the velodrome's track, as it turned out, that suited me better. Following this, the victories really started to come. Then I joined the junior selection team and a competitive team. Together with Jeffrey Hoogland and Nils van ’t Hoenderdaal, we won gold at the European Championship and silver at the World Championship. The Team Sprint, I think, is the best discipline. Nils starts off the whole thing during the first lap. During the second lap, Jef then ensures we reach maximum speed. It’s then up to me to finish the job. Nils has to keep up for seventeen seconds and I need forty-three. So, I have to distribute my strength in the best way I can. That's why I focus more on power training. Less weight, but more repetitions. We ride a KOGA Kimera Track. That frame offers precisely the stiffness you need. With track cycling it's all about strength. Even a standstill takes a lot of strength. You have to constantly keep the tension in your legs.
Together with Jeffrey Hoogland and Hugo Haak, we won gold in the team sprint at the European Championship and silver at the World Championship. I'm the man on the first lap. I have to get things started. Right from the start: full steam ahead! That’s why it’s so important that there is absolutely no friction in the frame. So all of your strength is converted immediately into speed. The KOGA Kimera Track has exactly that stiffness. I train for hours each day in the weights room to build up my explosiveness. I can channel this strength directly into my KOGA. Well... and maybe because of this, one time I took a heavy fall... that was in Apeldoorn. On the track you have that black line. That's the ideal line. If you follow that, the track distance is the shortest. If you steer outside the line, the banking angle is not strong enough and you don’t have so much counterforce. In which case you most definitely will fall. The result being a thigh full of splinters, some as big as matches. Just a stupid steering mistake. But otherwise it's a great sport.
I lived in Heerlen as a boy. On the edge of the hilly region of Limburg. We were always racing around. I had a Giant. The number of times I have disassembled and reassembled it. We did everything ourselves. Even back then, KOGA had super stunning mountainbikes. They launched a full suspension in '94. They were the first. I used to dream about owning a KOGA. But there was no way I could afford one in those days. The worst of all was that my mother did have a KOGA. Now I work there. I'm a product manager in the R&D department. I draft the bike specifications. I make sure we stay in the lead in terms of technology as well. Fabulous job. Just my hobby. We visited the Atlas Mountains last summer. While we were there I tested the new Shimano gear system. By the way, I completely refurbished my mom's old KOGA recently. She's almost afraid to ride it, that's how great it turned out. Obviously that wasn't really the plan!
Last summer my son and I rode our bikes to Austria. He was ten years old at the time. He really wanted to come the year before. But I thought he was too young then. So I went by myself to scout ahead. Eight days, 120 to 150 kilometres a day. Of course I took it a bit easier with Maxim. 13 days. 1200 kilometres. Not bad for a little guy. His pack was 10 kilos, mine 35. I ride a KOGA WorldTraveller. It's really a great ride. In fact, it's better with luggage than without. The road holding when descending is just amazing. It’s great flying down at 55 km/hr. Maxim's really getting a taste for it. A few days back we were watching the lottery results, and he said: Dad, what if we win? "Yep", I told him, "If we win, we'll buy you a KOGA as well, we’ll pick you up from school and go off riding our bikes around the world". His face was alight. A smile from ear to ear.
I've always been really into sport, but I never thought triathlons would be an option until I was seventeen. I wanted to see how far I could get. I won the Dutch Championship the very first year. In the Juniors category, of course. I went on to win silver at the European Championships, bronze at the WC and gold at the EC in 2013. Now I'm really training hard for Rio. The bicycle is crucial. I ride a KOGA Kimera. It's absolutely fantastic. If I'm not riding it, sometimes I catch myself watching it. This bike definitely deserves a medal. So now it's up to me.
Commuting. Normally, the first things that come to mind are traffic jams and stress. Well, not for me - that is, not anymore. Rather the opposite: relaxation, the wind against your face, fantastic. I live in Oldenzaal, and work in Enschede. Thirteen kilometres. I used to take the car, but now I ride my KOGA E-XLR8 speed E-bike. I should have done that years ago. It's pure enjoyment from home to work. With just light pedalling you're at 40 km/hr in no time, but you never break sweat. It's quicker too. But the biggest advantage: you arrive at work all nice and fresh. On the way back you can put work completely behind you. You can think things through while riding your bike. I catch myself making a detour through the woods from time to time. There is no better way to get home.
If the weather is good I ride my bike to the club that we're playing at. It’s an excellent warm up. Waking your body up before the game. Seriously, believe me, it's the best way to prepare. I always feel good when I arrive. Relaxed and focused at the same time. I love my KOGA F3. Beautiful. Sleek. Nicely finished. Everything you don't want to see is concealed. Modern design. Fancy. Almost feels like an extension of myself. And you know, on those few times we actually lose I can pedal it all out on the way home. Strange isn't it, I always feel OK when I get home. F3. My favourite. Love you.
The challenge: from Cairo to Cape Town. More or less in a straight line. Straight through regions that haven't even been mapped yet. 10.800 scorching kilometres. The world record was set at 59 days. I picked up the gauntlet. Keep your wits about you and go. No two days are the same. Fortunately there is one certainty. My bike. My KOGA Durado. I can trust it blindly. I assembled it myself. Its built by hand. Together, we conquer every challenge. Together, we smashed the record. After 42 days we reached the Atlantic Ocean. That’s an average of 256 kilometres a day. That's what I mean: together we can face anything.
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