Wednesday, May 13, 2009

Staff Profile: Doug Charnock

Doug was one of our very first customers in the Medina store, and he was in the store so often, that we figured we may as well hire him! He has been working at Century Cycles since 1997. He is now the Sales Manager in the Peninsula store, and he also lives in Peninsula. He is so plugged into the local gossip that his co-workers refer to him as the unofficial "Mayor of Peninsula." He also serves as one of Century Cycles' staff photographers; look for him with his camera at most events!

The Northeast Ohio winters aren't that big a deal to Doug, as he spent some time in Northern Minnesota while earning his college degree in Parks, Recreation, & Interpretation.

Q. What's your favorite thing about working at Century Cycles?

A. The ability of my co-workers to bring me out of a bad mood. It's a great group of people, and we really just have a good time together!

Q. How many bicycles do you own?

A. I have five bikes - two road bikes, two mountain bikes, and of course, a Surly Cross-Check, which I mainly use on the Towpath Trail.

Q. Which is your favorite bike?

A. That's a tough call, but I'd have to say my Vicious Cycles Electric Warrior road bike, only because it's the newest. I spared no expense in putting it together--custom paint job, carbon handlebar, Chris King hubs and headset, and Shimano Ultegra SL drive train.

Q. What was your first bike?

A. I don't remember much about the bikes I had as a kid. The first that I got when I started cycling as an adult was a Bianchi Ocelot mountain bike. It was one of the first 10 bikes that they sold at Century Cycles when they first opened the store in Medina!

Q. Road or dirt?

A. Definitely dirt, because it's just me and the bike; no worries about traffic and other stuff.

Q. What is your favorite trail or ride?

A. The mountain bike loop at Mohican State Park. There is this one section there that goes through some trees with smooth, swoopy curves that is my favorite bit of trail of all time, and I look forward to that section during the whole ride. It makes the other 24 miles of hell all worth while!

Q. What is your biggest accomplishment on a bike?

A. Last year, I took a vacation to New Zealand, and part of it was a 7-day mountain biking tour, where we covered 160 miles over some fantastic terrain, going from one secluded village to another.

Q. What do you like to do when not riding a bike?

A. Fly fishing and photography.

Q. What is your most-asked question by customers?

A. "Do you have a seat that won't hurt my butt?" People ask this both when buying a new bike, as well as when looking to upgrade the saddle on their current bike. The answer, of course, is yes. There is no right or wrong choice when it comes to bike seats; it's a matter of personal preference more so than any other part on a bike. We have a wide selection and can make a recommendation for just about anyone.

Q. What advice do you wish you could give to every customer?

A. There is some basic advice that I DO give to every customer, such as wear a helmet, and keep your tires inflated well. What I wish I COULD say to every customer is to not take cycling too seriously. I'm passionate about it and it "Defines my life" as much as the next guy. But I see too many people who worry too much that they are not getting fast enough; they set their goals too high. You need to set realistic goals, and just enjoy being where you are; that is, on your bike.

Q. What's the best cycling advice you've received?

A. I don't really have a good answer for that, since much of what I know about cycling was self-taught.

Q. What three words describe how you feel while riding a bike?

A. "Post. Ride. Beer."

Q. What is your favorite beer?

A. Stone Arrogant Double Bastard (not a reflection of my personality!)

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