Hans Rey: Bike Vault

Nov 10, 2014 at 14:33
by Dan Severson  


When I first pitched the general idea of "Bike related items that have a story behind them" to Hans Rey, I figured this would be a fairly easy task to put together. After all, we only needed a couple cool parts to write about. But, little did I know of the incredible amount of product and treasures that awaited at the house of Mr. Rey. First glance into the garage is a major sensory overload. Bikes on top of bikes, hanging medals and helmets resting above shelves, and old dresser drawers filled with new and vintage parts, still in original packaging. A retro jersey rack that would make any collector drool, sits next to hanging bikes that have traveled across the world, been on TV shows and have been ridden in countless video scenes (remember VHS?). After a brief tour and some story telling from Hans, we narrowed in on the choice pieces in his man-vault. Hope you enjoy.


Hans Rey Bike Vault images by Dan Severson
Hans Rey Bike Vault images by Dan Severson
Hans Rey Bike Vault images by Dan Severson



Hans Rey Bike Vault images by Dan Severson
  GT Zaskar and Kobe with the photo bomb.

bigquotesThe GT Zaskar bike model used to be my main bike throughout the nineties. It was the first all 'round bike that could do it all. As a matter of fact, it is the only bike model that has won in all mountain bike disciplines: cross country, downhill, dual slalom and, of course, World Cup Trials.

Hans Rey Bike Vault images by Dan Severson

bigquotesThis particular Zaskar, I used during one of my early adventure trips in 1995 and '96 to Machu Pichu, Peru, and also in the TV Series "Pacific Blue," when I got to play myself in a few episodes, and when I busted a big 360 from the Redondo Beach pier. I also used to compete in some trials comps on that bike. The bike had the classic Spin wheels and the big chainring was replaced with a rock ring from Amazing Toys. Good memories with that bike.

Hans Rey Bike Vault images by Dan Severson



Hans Rey Bike Vault images by Dan Severson
  An original 'nineties collaboration between two brands, Troy lee Designs teamed up with Shoei to produce the TL Comp. This helmet was originally offered as a half shell, and later introduced with a removable chin guard called the "RaceFace" to racers who needed a bit more protection.

bigquotesThis was probably my first full-face helmet. Until around that time (my guess is mid '90s), everybody was riding regular XC helmets and even pads weren't used. Funny how this helmet reminds me of modern-day Enduro helmets with a removable chin guard, especially when considering that Enduro races today are basically old-school downhills that require lots of pedaling. This helmet seems rather flimsy by today's standards, but it was a start, and Troy Lee has always been on the cutting edge.


Hans Rey Bike Vault images by Dan Severson
  The TL Comp was used by the likes of Brian Lopes, Dave Cullinan, Greg Herbold and Leigh Donovan and the design would evolve into one of mountain biking's first full-face helmets - the carbon fiber TLD Daytona.



Hans Rey Bike Vault images by Dan Severson
  Tioga Disc Wheel.

bigquotesThe Tioga disc wheel was a big hit before rear-suspension bikes took off. John Tomac and Greg Herbold made those wheels popular. I was always amazed how they were holding up, since there are no traditional spokes used, and nothing more is to it than the eye can see. The "spider web" design was very strong and really softened the rear end up, I loved the way they cornered and I felt good about the potential aerodynamics. Those wheels were quite expensive - I want to say around $1000 - at a time when a good bike only cost $2000. These are true collector items these days, and nothing better than one of the legendary white porcupine tires mounted. Great memories from the early 'nineties.


Hans Rey Bike Vault images by Dan Severson
  Onza Porqupine tire.




Hans Rey Bike Vault images by Dan Severson
Hans Rey Bike Vault images by Dan Severson
  1996 Atlanta Olympic Games Jersey.

bigquotesThis particular jersey was my uniform during the X-treme sports demo at the closing ceremonies at the Olympic Games in Atlanta in 1996. About 20 BMX'ers, skaters, trials riders and roller bladders performed a choreographed show, live in front of over one billion viewers (eat that Youtube). Tony Hawk, Mat Hoffman, Steve Caballero, Dennis McCoy, Andy MacDonald, Libor Karas, Doug White and I were some of the performers. It was a great experience, so I had my uniform signed by everybody afterwards. It hangs now in my garage along with some other jerseys from over the years.

Hans Rey Bike Vault images by Dan Severson

bigquotesI saved at least one jersey from every year, plus there are numerous leader and national jerseys, including the bibs from the very first X-Games (a.k.a. Extreme Games), where I competed in the Trials and Slalom events.



Hans Rey Bike Vault images by Dan Severson
  Assorted frames.

bigquotesOne of the piles in my garage has some of my old trials frames. Some of them, like the red Ricochet, were hand made by Gary Turner (GT) himself. Some of them are 20-inch bikes. Others are 26-inch.


Hans Rey Bike Vault images by Dan Severson

bigquotesGotta love the triple crown rigid trials forks and some of the customized skid plates. A lot of these frames can be seen in my old videos, like the blue one from riding up the waterfalls in Jamaica during the filming of 'Level Vibes.'



Hans Rey Bike Vault images by Dan Severson
Hans Rey Bike Vault images by Dan Severson
  If there is one thing that young riders and even current pros can learn from Hans, It's his knack for providing ultimate marketability to his sponsors.


Hans Rey Bike Vault images by Dan Severson
Hans Rey Bike Vault images by Dan Severson
  Hans wears many hats, which provides him many opportunities. All of which are documented, archived, reproduced, and then given back to present and future sponsors in the form of a thick, spiral-bound media book.

bigquotesEvery year I make a media book for my sponsors where I show media highlights and statistics from that year's media exposure - it's a great way to keep your sponsors happy and remind them why they pay you. To this day, my media exposure hasn't slowed down, with 400 to 500 pages annually and a few hundred hours of TV airtime from my adventure trips. To date, I've had close to 400 front covers on various magazines over the past 28 years!

Hans Rey Bike Vault images by Dan Severson
  Over the years, Hans has perfected the art of making his sponsors happy by being an extremely multi-faceted rider. It is important to note that, without a strong work ethic, none of these perks would be possible.



MENTIONS: @GTBicycles, @danyul
Must Read This Week

103 Comments

  • + 37
 Maybe this is a good place to ask this question. Over 15 years ago when my dad bought our family its first PC, it was the early days of the DVD and came with a sampler DVD featuring Hans riding in Moab and some other places. I have looked everywhere for this footage and can't find it. Anyone have any ideas? I think there was a Dire Straits song on it. 'Sultans of Swing' maybe? Anyone?
  • + 28
 By the way, this was the initial spark that got me into mountain biking.
  • + 21
 Probably ask the French dude who lives next to him. Apparently he was his long time filmer and is the most awesome dude you could every randomly meet. He was filming Rampage on what I think was an 8-Track video recording device.... 3 years ago. Anyways, the point I was trying to make is that Hans Rey is the best and Jay Leno's car collection can go fuck itself because this article is so much better. Baba-Booey
  • + 18
 I think you are looking for the movie "Tread" with Hans and HB. I have it on VHS and it's still fun to watch. vimeo.com/34309946

Awesome write up Pinkbike! Hans is a legend. I got to meet him at a race in Big Bear back in 2000 I think and Hans was very easy to approach and talk to. Hans, if you read this I occasionally ride in Laguna and would be stoked if you we could do a ride some time!
  • + 3
 One of my heroes for sure! I used to have a set of SPIN heels with the ceramic coating on the rim wall back in the day. They were bomb proof and turned heads like you wouldn't believe.
  • + 1
 Big Grin those narrow bars
  • + 1
 Eddie Roman's Hammertime had some awesome Hans Rey Clips and a Moab Section. I don't remember if the Moab section was Hans, though. Been a long time since I saw it.
  • + 2
 yeah "hammertime" had some serious zaskar shredding in it. i love those 93-95 zaskar frames. the aqua blue zaskar was my dream frame as a teenager. even can remember that pacific blue series :-)
  • + 1
 'Shredtopia' though
  • + 32
 A couple of years back I was a UK Forces guy working with American Forces for NATO. I used to write to Hans when the boys were heading to Afghanistan or retiring etc as many were big mountain bikers. He always sent a letter, a signed shirt and a signed poster and thanked them for their service. He also insisted that he picked up the postage.... An absolute gentleman in every sense of the word.
  • + 21
 For my generation, Hans was a pretty big deal. While everyone else was just plain racing he was showing the world real trials on XC hardtails. Its been a long time, but I think I saw him perform at a bike show in Vancouver at the Plaza Of Nations. I had never even heard of trials before, let alone seen it. GO HANS! Maybe I will get lucky and run into him on a trail somewhere....
  • + 29
 I've never posted a comment on Pinkbike, but after reading your comment, I have to. I saw the same show at Plaza of Nations! I still have the jersey he signed for me at that show. Hans was a hero growing up, and I saved all my kid pennies to build a Zaskar with dreams of riding like him one day. Still not even close Smile
  • + 2
 HA! I thought those GT's were BAD ASS. That day was the first time I rode a fully- I got to try a brand new Rocky Mountain Speed. Changed me forever.
  • + 20
 "Funny how this helmet reminds me of modern-day Enduro helmets with a removable chin guard, especially when considering that Enduro races today are basically old-school downhills that require lots of pedaling"
- Hans Rey -

Nuff said.
  • + 6
 Absolutely legend.
  • + 1
 No Way
  • - 3
 Yup, I am not crazy. Yup, those of you who lie to yourself and believe enduro is something other than watered down downhill are.
  • + 1
 @alexlag in the house defending Enduro Nation! Howzit?!
  • + 1
 @Hammerschmidt I was just making reference to Hans' old nickname Hans "no way" Rey, but now that you mention it, I'm defending Enduro Nation! Hope you are doing great!
  • + 15
 he's a really cool guy and great rider.
met him when he went here to manila for a bike festival about 3 or 4 years ago.
i gave him, brian lopes, jeff jones and a dude from dirt rag mag a ride to the dh tracks from the convention center.
funny how brian was being all sensitive about scratching his carbon ibis when hans just threw his gt force onto the back of the pick up.

it was one of the best rides i ever had in my truck and we even drove a bit of 4x4 to get to the tracks and brian was just shouting, "floor it!"
haha
  • + 2
 2009 TLBF Smile
  • + 2
 I'm glad I met Hans in my own country!
  • + 15
 Hans once shook my hand in the pits at a 12 hour race. My next lap was the fastest of the entire team.
Coincidence? I think not..
  • + 13
 The yearly media book documenting exposure?

Smartest man in the biz with that.

I hope all the skinny jeans kids are paying attention. This is how you build a career riding bikes that spans decades.
  • + 13
 Where would the sport be without Hans?
  • + 15
 Over there.
  • - 3
 it would be to enduro
  • + 13
 "Chocolate foot forward!"
  • + 7
 for me Hans was the first "super hero" of mountain biking. He showed me that riding was more than just pedaling fast on a dirt trail. He also shows me that you're never too old to ride a mountain bike.
  • + 6
 the VHS Han's "no way" Ray had lines that would still terrify a lot of riders.. then to try and pull it off on that XC rig with huge stem and cantilever brakes... shudder.
  • + 4
 Hans Rey is a cool guy and an amazing rider. I remember I was his driver to all his presentations while he was in Peru. Then we rode in Pachacamac and Olleros showing amazing skills. Go Hans!
  • + 4
 Had a beer with Hans once back in Big Bear. Nice of him to sit down at our table of rookie racers and give some 1 on 1 advice.
  • + 2
 This is just so cool. Love to see the old gear that I once drooled over. Between this and the "Pro's Closet" articles that have popped up here at PinkBike recently, it's nice to see all of that MTB history. Hans Rey still shreds BTW. Check out the Trail Ninja vid where he rides in South America...
  • + 5
 This is one of the most impressive things i've ever seen. CERN super collider be damned.
  • + 2
 I just love him. So many memories of the early days of riding and I too wanted that Zaskar Lee. GT stickers were all over my stuff and I never bought one, I've never even ridden a GT but that yellow decal on his raw alu frame stays embeded in my mind forever.
  • + 2
 Bunny rabbit Hansey!!

I remember me and my mates would skip school sometimes just to watch Hans Rey videos on VHS (Level Vibes and Monkey See Monkey Do) while getting stoked to go and ride urban trials on our crappy XC mountain bikes of the time (I also rocked one of those Troy Lee Edge helmets without the mouthpiece at this time too - talk about monkey see monkey do HAHA).

So stoked he's still going - Hans Rey was absolutely the reason I got into mountain biking over 20 years ago. Legend!
  • + 4
 Level Vibes on VHS. That had me hopping on picnic tables for years afterwards... I suppose those skills still come in handy on the trail. Thanks Hans!
  • + 2
 Good to see all the classic stuff. I remember seeing Hans doing a demo at Metabief worlds in 93 and he got a puncture riding on to the roof a C 15 van with no ramp, the was serious mind blowing back then
  • + 1
 With all these kids copying Danny MacAskill, there's going to be at least one rider who will replace him when he goes. No one will replace Hans Rey. No one! P.s. Hans, cheers for signing my that poster for me in Peebles a couple of months back! Ross
  • + 1
 I saw him in the first UK Malvern Hills Classic. It was the first organised weekend race event in Radnor Deer Park, Malvern, Worcestershire, England. It was on video also if you can find it? Guess the year....1991. I rode many bikes to this day, but never tried a Zaskar.
  • + 1
 Eastnor Wink twas epic.
  • + 2
 I have been loving the articles and pics lately embracing the history of our sport and highlighting the legends. A fellow PBer suggested a "Throwback Thursday". Know your roots kids!!!!
  • + 5
 Rey all the way... What a legend!!! With a hell of a legacy
  • + 1
 Small world, if you look at his calendar shot under the month of June you'll see "Gooddale" marked on the 6th. That stood for Gooddales bike shop in NH where he'd visit every summer to do a demo. At that particular one, I got picked to lay down while he jumped and did tricks over me, good times.
  • + 3
 Hans is a living God. He was and still is good at every discipline of riding.
  • + 1
 I bought one of his 20" yellow GT trials bikes way back when. It was a custom and stretched out compared to the production models. He was cool and approachable then as I imagine him now.
  • + 0
 Yeah back in the day I lusted after the zaskar. Sorry but these days I'm very unimpressed with GT, despite their success with the Athertons. Convoluted linkage b.s. Sorry - Hans is still a legend as he was when I joined the sport back in the mid 90's. Go Hans!
  • + 2
 Function over form, he wrapped the seatpost to protect it from dirt. Still have a coppy of him and Ashton plus Hawyes. 3 legends that got me to mountain bike.
  • + 2
 Hans is such a good rider. We once toured him around Cypress (when Hangman was still there) and he schooled all of us while riding a hardtail and xc fork.
  • + 2
 Think you have your mountains confused.
  • + 1
 I meant to say Reaper. hahaha!
  • + 2
 Such a legend, I have so much respect for you Hans Rey! Thank you for providing generations of riders someone to look up to and imitate as best we can.
  • + 1
 I love Hans yes way rey. that pic of him at his desk under a shrine of photos of himself. imagine the ego it takes to build a shrine to yourself.
  • + 1
 Level vibes man! Thanks Hans and thanks Pinkbike for such a great story. This could be a weekly write up of items we'd all like to see in the hall of fame garage.
  • + 1
 Great article, thanks! Hans is definitely inspirational. He's the cause of me wanting to hop on to everything, when I was in my teens. Ha !
  • + 1
 Man I loved my zaskar le. Probably more than the lts dh and subsequent sts dh. It was just awesome to ride. Plus you could get the old brasso out and turn it into a mirror!
  • + 1
 www.pinkbike.com/photo/2458170
i remember the time i was wacthing a dirt jump comp in ormoc and hans came to have a chat with us ... hans is a real legend
  • + 2
 What happened to tioga? They've got to bring the disk drive back. Forget carbon wide rims, i want a disk drive!
  • + 1
 Yes! Me too. So that's a pre-order, kickstarter, thingamy of two units. Surely that's enough lol.
  • + 1
 Make that 3!
  • + 1
 I'm in 4..someone please reboot this on kick starter!
  • + 2
 Very cool. Met Hans at a worlds. Nico and Anne Caro won jr dh and the missle won the wmn. Nice flashback PB!
  • + 2
 Awesome!! Some serious history there. He must be one of the longest running sponsored riders of all time.
  • + 2
 Hans and I bumped shoulders once in Aliso Woods while out riding. Dude loves to ride his bike. Great article.
  • + 4
 that garage, i want Smile
  • + 1
 I only want the KTM enduro
too much stuff in the garage :-)
  • + 3
 There's easily north of a hundred grand in that garage.
  • + 3
 Hans is greater than 90% of the wankers out there today....get em bro....
  • + 2
 Awesome article. Saw him perform years ago in Arizona. Great skill set. Wish I could ride like him.
  • + 1
 That Zaskar has what are in my opinion the prettiest XTR derailleurs Shimano ever made.
  • + 1
 Watched Tread over and over back in the 90s. Always got us stoked to ride. "doing some fun stuff, some crazy stuff"
  • + 3
 I want my DCD back.
  • + 1
 I found mine up only the other day...
  • + 3
 That old Zaskar is hot!!
  • + 2
 Best thing ever posted on PB. Pleasepleaseplease more like this!
  • + 1
 such a legend Hans !!! pb I really enjoyed this article keep up the good work . but I'm a little envious of Hans man cave .
  • + 3
 thanks..this is guut
  • + 1
 Hans e o CARA! Humilde e exemplo para um bando de deslumbrado que nao tem metade do braco que o cara tem!!!
  • + 1
 yo hans…..amazing gear, amazing stories, amazing guy….nice blurb!!!!! :Smile )
  • + 2
 Man I still love the sound of those Tioga discs rolling by at speed
  • + 1
 This legend has the best job in the world and that's a dream job I wish to have!
  • + 2
 Hero! Rides with such precision and grace; very humble and selfless!
  • + 2
 The true legend, the creator of the true free-ride!!!
  • + 1
 i have a zaskar that exact same colour. i didn't know its pedigree... stoked.. Smile
  • + 3
 Cheers!
  • + 0
 Hans is the original freerider! Got a Zaskar in my vintage collection, level vibes on VHS too. Rode a trials demo with him in 95!
  • + 3
 No way
  • + 2
 yes way!!!

PB should run more articles along these lines, so much history to our sport and so many amazing riders and characters from the last 30 years of Mountainbiking, I often wonder what some of them are up to these days? Obviously Hans never went away, he's still rocking it, absolute legend!
  • + 3
 Sooo stoked!
  • + 2
 "Hands down " to Hans Rey!!!!!!
  • + 1
 That helmet features the same idea as the Bell super 2r and that troy lee is a few years older ^^
  • + 1
 First Picture, Moto Mud Guard - Portugal!!! 3
  • + 2
 One of the greats!
  • + 2
 respects to this legend!
  • + 1
 "roller bladders"... bang on!
  • + 1
 Funny, I've been at that "Rey-day" in image 3. Lots of Lycra there ...
  • + 1
 His no handed wheelies got my hooked.
  • + 1
 Major man cave braggin rights.
  • + 1
 what ever happened to "pineapple bob"?
  • + 1
 Legend!
  • + 1
 No fat bike ?
  • - 1
 I'm not saying he doesn't have one, but he lives in the desert (Arizona?) I believe. He can ride standard sized year round.
  • + 1
 Yeah HANS!!!

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