We got an e-mail from the shop's buyer, who is attending Interbike. It said that Mr. 24 was spotted in the Elete booth, and was really working hard. That's what I would expect from Jeff. He is a stand up kinda guy, and he knows what it means to be a sponsored athlete. He is one of those that actually gets it. I wouldn't have expected anything less from him.
The way I see it, Jeff could have easily said that there was something else he had to do. That he couldn't go to Interbike. Or, he could have taken the Elete folks up on the free ride, and showed up late at the booth, or not at all. He could have cheesed out a lot of different ways, but he didn't. He showed up, and worked hard, because he felt that was the least he could do for a company that supported him, and gave him free product to use. That's how you keep your sponsor and gain more. Yes, you can even get more! The cycling community is a pretty tight knit one. People talk. If you are one of the good eggs, it'll come back on you. And if you are not, well that comes back on you too. If that is the case, well, you can expect less. Probably nothing.
I'm sure Jeff would rather be riding and prepping to go to Japan to do the 24 hour race there. In fact, he's only back for a few days before he has to go there. I'm sure that it will be a tough schedule, with this Interbike trip. But, Jeff saw an opportunity to give back. So, he did. Need any pointers in how to keep a sponsor happy, and get more, than look no farther than Mr. 24. He's got that wired tight!
Yeah, I know that there are others of you out there doin' the right thing. Kudos to you guys and gals too. I just wanted to point out Jeff and say that this is how it's supposed to work. Okay, enough gushing! Take it for what it's worth. I hope somebody gets inspired by this, and takes it even further!