#mechanicmonday honors Mike Berry
Happy Monday, and Happy Labor Day to our friends here in the US! Labor Day traditionally marks the unofficial end of summer, which can mean only one thing: CX IS COMING! So it seems only appropriate that we honor one of the outstanding mechanics of American cyclocross with today’s Mechanic Monday feature.
For those of you who are unfamiliar with PBMA’s Mechanic Monday series, this is where we feature one mechanic each week who is chosen randomly from the pool of nominations that we receive. Mechanic Monday is all about mechanics supporting fellow mechanics, and we are proud to partner with Abbey Bike Tools, Cycling Industry News, and People for Bikes to share these great features with you.
Without further ado, we are pleased to introduce you to Mike Berry of Boston, Massachusetts – one of the elite mechanics for the Cannondale p/b Cyclocrossworld.com professional cyclocross team!
Mike has been working with Stu Thorne and his Cannondale-Cyclocrossworld program for many years, but didn’t take on a leadership role until the 2013-2014 season, when he assumed full mechanical responsibility for the development team of Junior and U-23 athletes. In the five years since then, Mike has become an indispensable part of the program at both the elite and development levels.
Mike builds and maintains the fleet of Devo bikes each year, and he works individually with each of the young riders to practice “pit skills” like bike changes and understanding tire pressure for different conditions. He also helps out with the Pro team’s four elite riders, manages the program’s inventory of spare parts, and helps coordinate sponsor relationships and logistics. Mike helps support both the Devo and Pro teams’ athletes at their many UCI and World Cup races, from as close-to-home as the Gloucester Grand Prix to as far-away as the World Championships in Europe. He swears he doesn’t have a favorite race, only favorite courses because no two years (or days) in a single venue are the same.
During the “off-season” of cyclocross – a.k.a. mid-February to mid-August – Mike is a neutral support mechanic on the road. He got his start volunteering with Mavic’s Special Service Course (SSC) program something like 25 years ago, which makes him one of Mavic’s longest-tenured mechanics. Mike has also worked extensively with Butch Balzano’s NRS & Events p/b LOOK program for at least ten years, and is beginning to work with the new, in-house SRAM Neutral Support program as well.
In his time working in neutral support, Mike has trained countless up-and-coming mechanics – including more than a few who are now working on the World Tour circuit – and has facilitated countless technical seminars for bike shops, teams, and recreational cyclists. His advice on everything from disc brakes to torque specs has been featured both within and outside of the industry (most recently in Cyclocross Magazine). Mike has worked tirelessly to forge and maintain great relationships with an incredible array of companies, and has partnered specifically with Pedro’s for product testing and developing educational content to be released starting next year.
With his background in neutral and team support, his understanding of the industry, and his history with the Mavic brand, Mike was the obvious choice this year when Mavic’s new leadership decided to restart and rebuild the stateside SSC program. This year’s events included four Haute Routes and one wildly successful Tour of Utah, and Mike is already collaborating with Mavic’s leadership on expanding their calendar for next season.
The “favorite tool” question with Mike is a loaded one; he is a veritable connoisseur of tools, so much so that he is able to decide on a favorite flavor of ice cream more readily than he is a favorite tool. Mike’s toolbox is an eclectic mix of time-tested favorites, collected surprises, and one-of-a-kind prototypes and homemade (or home-adapted) tools. His favorite tool today – as he is finishing Cannondale-Cyclocrossworld team bikes and prepping to glue tires ahead of the UCI season opener in Rochester next weekend – is the new Pedro’s Rx Micro-9 multi-tool, customized with all the bits he needs to dial-in the team equipment. But even Mike admits that is likely to evolve as the season progresses, so stay tuned to his Instagram feed (@mikeberrymech) for updates!
That’s all for this week! Thank you for following along with our series and sharing our support for our fellow mechanics. We’ll be back next week with a new feature. In the meantime, we are still in need of nominations!! You don’t need to be a PBMA Member to nominate or be featured! (All that we ask is for no self-nominations, please.) Click here to learn more about our 2018 Mechanic Monday series, and here to learn more about how to nominate your favorite mechanic!
This page is a collective of articles relavant to consumers, enthusiasts and the whole of the cycling industry in general.