A Cut Above: James Young

James Young, a native of Kent, England, is heading to Kona for the 2nd time with his Dimond on one side and his wife, Claire, on the other. Both requalified this year at IM Canada. James, in his 3rd place finish, PR’d his  bike split and the race in 9hrs 49mins.

James made two key changes in 2015 and 2016:

  1. A shiny new Dimond
  2. Coaches Matt Dixon and Sean Garrick of PurplePatch Fitness

Both added speed and smiles, with Matt adding the structure and proper feedback for this man who also coaches triathletes for PB&J coaching. Seems like a proper one-two punch as Dimond pro Jesse Thomas and AG slayer Emily Lanter did the same.

Last year James famously described his Dimond as “an armchair strapped to a Ferrari.” And he’s spent some quality time aboard his rocket in 2016, raising his FTP from 310 to 340. Like many, he thinks of a myriad of things during his long rides, describing his mind as “a hyperactive, coffee fueled 9 year old randomly abusing Google.” But one thing this designer never worries about is his Dimond.  Never one for sugarcoating, James states, “If you don’t hate a bike after five hours in the saddle – you’re golden. It’s the perfect long haul partner.”

James, and his wife Claire now lives in British Columbia where he has the opportunity to slash the big descents regularly. A la Jesse Thomas in Lanzarote, Young feels he gains as much time on the descents as he does the flats. “The descents are a stay-in-aero, stress-free grin fest. The bike feels as though it’s ‘on rails.’”

Update: Over the weekend, James was involved in a bike accident near his hometown in Kelowna, British Columbia. James somehow walked away with only minor bumps and bruises, but will be needing a crash replacement bike before Kona. Wish James a speedy recovery, and if you see him in Kona give him a nod as this hard nose Brit is still full steam ahead with his eyes set on that Kona shoreline.

Meet the Miners: Home Course Advantage

Once a year Des Moines, Iowa, hosts a triathlon. As a local triathlon company, it would be a shame to miss it. This year, six individuals from the Dimond Mine competed…and succeeded!

Olympic Results:

CEO & Founder TJ Tollakson finished his first post-surgery race in 6th Place in the men’s pro division. He lead the swim and was 1st off the bike in typical Dimond fashion.

Chief Engineer Matt Cymanski took names and a 3rd Place finish in the men’s open division with a blazing fast 35:15 run following a tough 70 mile training ride the day before. Matt will be participating in Ironman Chattanooga in the upcoming weeks, wish him luck!

TJDesMoinesTri2

Sprint Results:

Quality Control Engineer Eric Greenley swept the men’s 25-29 AG, winning by more than 5 minutes and placing 2nd overall in the sprint.

Board Member Hank Norem and Marketing & Sales Director Brad Bach had a tough fought battle in the 35-39 AG. A pre-race bet for lunch had been placed, and Brad ended up just edging out Hank for 2nd in the AG and the lunch of his choice!

Dimond Van Pilot Reed Strauss completed his first ever triathlon despite a flat tire adding two miles to his run. 

Board member and Dimond owner Jason Hellickson placed 2nd in the 45-49 AG with a PB 1:00:10 bike split.

Board member Frank Levy helped his team win the overall relay division by posting a 1:01 bike split with minimal training atop his Dimond steed.

Dimond Bikes is a triathlon company devoted to the sport and the endless pursuit of speed.

Dimond Is Hiring

Dimond Bikes is looking for a Dimond Concierge. This person must be highly organized and good on the phone. This person will be responsible for many roles, but most importantly ensuring our customers receive Brilliant service.

The job will be located in Des Moines, Iowa. We are not accepting work from home applicants. Starting pay is $35,000. 

Job Requirements:

  • Complete customer orders
  • Facilitate customer build orders
  • Help set up test ride leads for our outside rep
  • Answering inbound calls
  • Traveling to Ironman Expos
  • Assisting Dimond Club members with post sale orders
  • Assisting with different marketing & sales initiatives.
  • Eagerness to continue learning industry specific data and language

Education and Experience:

  • High school diploma at a minimum
  • Highly organized
  • Flexible in roll
  • Outstanding customer service qualities

Work Environment:

Dimond Bikes is a team of ambitious, hardworking, young professionals promoting an active and healthy lifestyle. We are a startup company set on maintaining a rich company culture while growing a successful manufacturing operation. Dimond Bikes is a nicotine-free work environment.

Please email resume/cv to info@dimondbikes.com.

A Cut Above: Jonathan Recchi

Jonathan Recchi is a professional poker player and nurse in Philadelphia. He became a triathlete in 2012, and, after being passed by a woman three times his age, was quickly addicted. In July, Jonathan completed in Ironman Lake Placid.

But there is so much more to Jonathan. Twelve years ago, Jonathan was a junior in high school with a benign tumor on his parotid gland in his neck. After multiple surgeries with limited success, Jonathan had a big decision to make. Despite previous attempts to remove the tumors, they continued to grow. Jonathan was in pain all the time, and the tumors lead to issues with his hearing, chewing and talking. The surgery, however, required him to sacrifice his facial nerve, leading to major palsy for the whole right side of his face.

“I had finally reached a point in life where vanity did not matter anymore. The people who mattered in my life would not care that only half my face worked – I was still me.”

In October of 2015, Jonathan headed to Johns Hopkins to meet with a team of three surgeons – one to dissect the tumors and remove the facial nerve, one to drill into the base of his skull to find the facial nerve, and one who would remove a nerve in his leg and implant it into his neck to act as a new facial nerve. A return to 50% functionality on the right side of his face would be an outstanding result.

Prior to surgery, Jonathan had a very strong triathlon season, ranked 17th in his age group in his home state. He had trained for countless hours and was in the best shape of his life. He was strong. He was happy. And he was healthy.

In December and January following the surgery, Jonathan returned to Johns Hopkins for 25 doses of radiation over the course of 5 weeks. He could taste nothing, had painful sores in his mouth, and swallowing was difficult. His ears and nose were constantly bleeding. At 29 years old, Jonathan was completely miserable. His body just wasn’t the same.

The surgery and radiation side effects made it easy to enter a negative state of mind. He struggled to stay positive despite knowing that his 12 years of struggle would soon be over. To keep himself motivated and positive, Jonathan entered into an Ironman and bought himself a “get well soon” present – a brand new Dimond.

On March 1 of 2016, just four months before Ironman Lake Placid, Jonathan walked one mile. It took him 18 minutes and 35 seconds, and he was completely exhausted. The next day, he biked at 100 watts for 10 minutes. Again, exhausted. Slowly and surely, he worked to regain what the radiation had taken away.

In July, Jonathan set out to not only complete IMLP, but to do it in under 12 hours. Many people, including his oncologist, thought he needed a psych eval.

“During the race when my legs felt like giving out, when my lungs were burning and my body was screaming for me to quit, I remembered those dark days and what I had been through – the road that lead me to IMLP. I remembered barely being able to eat. I remembered every trip to the basement of the Weinberg Building at Johns Hopkins in Baltimore for radiation. I remembered the Bee Gee’s “Stayin’ Alive” playing during treatment and laughing at the irony. I remembered bawling my eyes out in the arms of my oncologist – telling her that I didn’t think I could make it through treatment. No one and no condition can take away my determination, my perseverance, or my spirit.”

Jonathan used his memories as fuel. IMLP couldn’t even compare with what he had been through.

“One of my favorite things at IMLP was immediately bonding with other athletes on Dimonds – one look, one smile, and you could tell that they were loving life just as much as you. Five hours and 59 minutes flew by. Most people remark how happy they are to get off the bike in T2, but it was the opposite for me. I didn’t want to get off! I was not only amazed at how well I felt during the bike, I was also surprised by how well I felt starting my marathon. No aches, no pains – just ready to get out there and run.

I will never forget hugging my mother at mile 24 of the run. I told her that I had 40 minutes to run 2 more miles to finish under my goal of 12 hours. We both cried for a bit, and off I went. I will never forget the feeling of crossing that line.”

Jonathan continues to set challenging goals for himself. He’s already signed up for Alaskaman in July of 2017. And that is just the start.

Jonathan Recchi, YOU ARE AN IRONMAN! 11:47:32.

Thank you for your inspiration!

Dimond in the Rough: Aero Box

Little things can make a big difference. In triathlon, it might be the value of 100 calories or a mere two minutes too long above threshold.

And at Dimond, we care about the little things. So much so that we set some time aside to design our “little black box.”

Sure. We know. It doesn’t look like much. A little box. But this little box can do big things. It’s worth nearly 5 watts. And we think it makes an already sexy bike even sexier.

The Dimond was built to be modular in nature. It is meant to be compatible with a variety of components, allowing for upgrades and incredible flexibility. While other companies may lock you into a certain bar or specific fit, we want our frame to work for you…for years to come.

So, in our first round of designing we intentionally left a little room behind the stem. This allows the use of many different bars, including the current 3T Aduro bar (which can be seen on our premium build!). But with some other bars, that empty space stuck out to us, so we asked ourselves a tough question: “Is this slowing our athletes down?”

The short answer: Yes.

How exactly did we arrive at this information? We took a trip to the A2 wind tunnel. In the charts below, you can see the benefit. The red line indicates the resistance of the Dimond in wind before adding the Aero Box. The blue line shows just what the Aero Box can do for you: just over 40 grams of savings!

But what does that mean? Fewer grams of drag is better. It’s not a perfect science, but 10 grams of drag is approximately equal to 1 watt. The second chart with the green line shows the difference in resistance at different wind angles, or yaw.

At Dimond we never stop improving. 

Need to order yours? Click here to save time and energy!

Meet the Miners: Reed Strauss

What does a swiss army knife have to do with a Dimond bike? Reed may be the only person on the planet that knows the answer. And if you’re one of the many Dimond customers who has had the pleasure of working with him, you can probably imagine why.

In his year and a half with Dimond, Reed has been the guy on the other side of the phone for many happy Dimond owners. But now, prepare to meet the man up close and personal in the coming months: Reed’s hitting the road as our new Dimond Van Pilot!

If you want to impress him upon your first face-to-face encounter, have some random facts or riddles ready to go. Better yet, bring a guitar or some great new music for him to listen to. Reed is constantly on the up and up when it comes to interesting facts and new music. Lately, he’s been really into Panda, by Desiigner, don’t ask us why! And if you must ask, be sure to ask Brad. 

ReedStrauss

A few more random facts about Reed: he lived in NYC for a brief period, was a pretty huge band geek in high school, is often times an all-too-serious kick ball player, played running back in high school, rode his bike across Iowa multiple times and even ran cross country in middle school. And recently, he’s been attempting to “tame” the bunnies in his back yard by coaxing them in with carrots… This guy has done it all, but he has yet to toe the line in his first triathlon. (Don’t worry, we know you’ll convert him.)

So now that you’re basically best friends with Reed now, so be sure to stop by at one of our upcoming events (listed below!). We’re going to miss his wit around the office, but we are happy to have him continuing to spread the Dimond love!

08/7/16:     IM Boulder
08/12/16:   USAT Nationals
08/21/16:   IM Mont Tremblant
09/04/16:   Des Moines Triathlon
09/11/16:   IM Wisconsin
09/25/16:  IM Chattanooga
10/08/16:  IM World Championships
10/22/16:  IM North Carolina
11/05/16:   IM Florida
11/20/16:   IM Arizona

A Cut Above – Justin Samples

Discovering Brilliance: A glimpse into the polished performances of our Dimond Club AG athletes.

Justin raced for 8 years chasing down his ticket to Kona. After several trips to the fitter and some difficult travel arrangements with his Cervelo P5, Justin began looking into Dimond. Specifically, he recalls racing IM Texas and was passed by only two people…both on Dimonds.

After Texas I decided to test ride one the next time I got a chance. While at IMCDA, I learned a little more about the company. I loved that it was US-based and had a boutique feel. I loved the thought process of a tri bike being built for and by tri-geeks. I loved that I could put my own front end and control the fit adjustability versus being fit into whatever box a company deemed aero. So when I test rode it, it wasn’t fair; it’s an amazing ride. The best part was the personalized service. Regardless of any issue, I was actually talking to someone trying to help me solve it or find a solution. That is increasingly rare these days, and as someone who owns a large service-oriented business, it really stood out to me. Dimond’s “client comes first” attitude breeds loyalty, and it earned mine.”

After purchasing the Dimond in 2015, Justin raced IM Arizona almost immediately. Personal and professional obligations had reduced his time for training, so his plan was to dial down wattage to ensure he could finish the race.

“All told, IMAZ was a breakthrough race. I had one of my fastest bike splits. My legs, back and body felt fresh. Let’s say they certainly did not feel like I just TT’d for 112 miles. That allowed me to crush the run getting a PR split of 3:17, running my way to 3rd place with a 9:22 overall and my first-ever Kona slot.”

The next two races were a regional half and Olympic called Pacific Crest Sport Festival outside of Bend, OR. He was using the races as a training weekend for Vineman at the end of July, so he signed up for both back to back without a taper.  Much to his surprise, he PR’d the long course triathlon by over 40 minutes, nabbing the 3rd best run split behind only a couple of WTC pros (Tim Reed won). Justin won his AG field by more than 10 minutes, finishing only behind the pros who had entered the race. He then raced the Olympic the following day – on tired legs – and managed to pull off another AG win, taking 5th overall. 

“That to me is a huge testament to the bike, and not so much in a quantifiable way. Yes, the bike is aero. But the bike is also comfortable, which allows me to stay aero, and I know we can’t put data behind it but the slight dampening effect of the beam has allowed me to achieve very real breakthroughs on the run. Those breakthroughs and blistering fast bike splits are what has allowed my to nab my first-ever Kona slot and my first-ever race wins, on back to back days even!”

Justin is looking forward to Vineman at the end of July and his trip to the big island in October. And we’re looking forward to helping his wife with her next bike. “On Sunday my wife turned to me and said “Hey, your record on that bike is pretty good. Have you ordered mine?” We may have to think about an addition to the family…

A Cut Above – Corie Young

Discovering Brilliance: A glimpse into the polished performances of our Dimond Club AG athletes.

Corie Young seeks a crown of her own aboard her Dimond, Pharoah (affectionately-named after Triple Crown winner American Pharoah!)

Hiking and climbing mountains, trailing running, kayaking, paddle boarding, “dabbling” in mountain biking and ultra-running. Anything outdoors makes Corie Young, a 44 year old mother of 3, and her family, happy. So it’s no surprise that Corie is also a triathlete.

Corie started running in 2008 to help raise money for Team in Training, and just kept running. In 2010, Corie became a triathlete, training with her husband and friends in Oklahoma. Becoming a triathlete included learning to swim and buying her first bike since childhood. Just one year later, Corie completed her first Ironman, and she’s been hooked ever since. She loves to train, and competes in only a select few races each season.

She raced her first and only race bike, a Cervelo P1, for 5 years before deciding to make her dream of owning a Dimond a reality. She had friends who encouraged her to pull the trigger, claiming they were enchanted not only with the bike but with the process of working with the Dimond team to build the exact bike they wanted. In September of 2015, after years of working to “deserve” an upgrade, Corie officially joined the Dimond Club. “I wanted every advantage on my quest for Kona, and I knew that this bike would somehow be the boost I needed to believe in myself.”

Corie’s first race aboard her Dimond steed, Pharoah, was the Pacific Crest Long Course Tri in June of 2016. After injuries that set back her training, she didn’t know how the race would go. She entered T1 with an unexpected delay – her timing chip had been ripped off during the swim. But after a longer-than-anticipated transition, Corie jumped on the bike and began picking off her competition, one by one.

“The bike is so crazy light and responsive. Every ounce of effort seems to translate into “GO!” I still have to pedal and work hard up hills, but the result for the effort is so rewarding and fun! I was passing guys left and right, athletes on nice bikes. Men who started 6-10 minutes ahead of me. Pharoah and I probably got a dozen compliments as we zoomed by, many to the tune of ‘sweet bike.’ The course had just over 3000 feet of climbing, with some steep 6-9% grades and a wicked 12-mile descent. Pharoah handled it fabulously.”

At T2, Pharoah was one of just a few bikes in transition…and Corie started with the fourth wave. She took off on her final leg, running conservatively with no computer for pacing. Corie didn’t see another woman for the rest of the race, finishing the day with an AG win, a bike PR on the toughest ½ IM Course she’d ever done, and the fastest female amateur bike split. Keep an eye out for Corie and Pharoah at IM Coeur D’Alene next month!

Meet the Dimond Team – Matt AKA “The Chief”

Position: Chief Engineer

Roles & responsibilities: I do a little bit of everything, from new product design and overseeing the manufacturing process, to working on new layups and even making bikes myself if we need some extra work done.

Where did you grow up? I grew up in Hiram, Ohio, a small town in the northeast part of the state, often referred to simply as “God’s Country”. For you Cyclone fans, I recently learned it was the birthplace of Jack Trice. After high school, I pursued an engineering degree from The Ohio State University, and during that time got a job as an intern at Rüster Sports. The rest, as they say, is history.

Sports as a child? Growing up I played a lot of baseball and basketball. At some point, I realized I was better suited to run long distances than short, so in high school I ran track and cross country and dabbled on the swim team. It was at that point that I also got into riding bikes and even did a few triathlons in the summer months. When I became a Buckeye, it was a no brainer to join the triathlon team. It was at that point that I really got into the sport and learned about slowtwitch.com.


Fondest memories of bikes? I have a couple vivid childhood memories from riding bikes. One is from when I was probably about 8 or 9, when my dad would go out for long runs I would sometimes ride along. On some of the big hills, I couldn’t make it up so my dad had to push. Another memory is from spring time when we were spreading mulch, I decided it would be a great idea to use the mulch pile as a ramp. Needless to say, this didn’t end up very well and I think I still have a scar on my knee.

On a bit of a brighter note, I can remember one year in high school I was injured during cross country season. Fortunately, I had just gotten my first road bike that summer. My coach would make me go out and ride, and during that time, I did my first ever workout on a bike. I think that was what really got me hooked.

What are you most excited about bikes today? I just loving helping people go fast. When a customer first gets on their bike and report back about how great it felt, that’s what makes it all worth it. Once in awhile, they let me out of the office and I get a chance to go to a demo event, and seeing the looks on peoples faces when they come back from a ride on the Dimond is just priceless.

If I had to do something else for a job, what would be it be? Realistically & without limits? For sure an astronaut. I actually considered applying when they opened up applications last year. But I think I needed a few more years of experience first. As I kid it was my dream to be the first man on Mars. I actually wrote a book about it.

Wish you had this skill? This is a tough one. But since I’m a true engineer I’d say better people skills.

Racing this year? This may be sacrilegious to some of you but I actually haven’t finalized my 2016 schedule yet. I do know that I’ll be making my Ironman debut at Chattanooga in September. Between now and then I’ll do some local half and olympic distance racing, potentially a 70.3, and maybe even try to win a few Cat 4 crits. Then next spring I’m hoping to tackle Rim2Rim2Rim with my college friend and my dad if I can convince him.

May Bike Of The Month

Have you ever been seated at a Chili’s or Red Robin and discovered a tablet on your table with a full menu, interactive games and even the Microsoft Cloud? That tablet was created by a company called Ziosk. More specifically, by a radical guy named Jack Baum. And while we think his restaurant invention is really great, what we really like about him is that he has an pretty sweet looking Dimond!

Like many of our current bike owners, Jack was convinced to switch from his Cervelo P-5 to a Dimond after a test ride. He said it was so comfortable, he wanted to stay in aero position during his entire 7 hour ride.

So Jack jumped on the Dimond bandwagon. And he really turned it up with his custom paint job. Major kudos to his digital designer, Chris Adams, who created this branded Ziosk Dimond bike. Check out his fully decked out bike here with the custom imprint technology on the NSW’s from Zipp Speed Weaponry. 

As one of the founding members of Ziosk (he started the company with 3 of his students from an MBA class!), Jack obviously has a lot on his plate. Jack first admits to us that he’s one of those lucky people who doesn’t require a lot of sleep to keep functioning. This makes him super human in our minds. He also fits all of his training in during the wee hours of the morning so he can make it to work during the weekdays and be home for lunch with his wife on the weekends.

In fact, Jack has one of the best philosophies we’ve heard for balancing work, family and training. He says life is akin to a three-leg stool, and all must be in balance for the stool to stay upright:

“The first leg is represented by family and friends and these relationships must be cherished, respected and nurtured. Most of our worth comes down to the relationships that we have with others. The second leg is represented by what we do with the bulk of our waking hours, for most of us that is our job. I believe we all must figure out how we are “improving the world” within our job and elevate it to a point where it is not about collecting a paycheck…The third leg is a personal leg and maybe even a selfish leg. This is where you need to find a way to recharge your batteries. This could be reading, gardening, video game play or maybe swimming, biking and running.”

Jack says his priority is first family, then work and then training.

With his new Dimond in tow, Jack’s goals for this season are to podium at IM Texas and qualify for Kona. In addition to his tricked out bike, he has a secret weapon in his pocket: Hillary Biscay.

We at Dimond know Hillary as the better half of Maik Twelsiek and founder of Smashfest Queen. She also coaches many of our favorite athletes, including the Smash Dimond women’s triathlon team. Jack attended her training camp last year and discovered why Hillary breeds champions: her caring nature, intuition, intelligence and unparalleled experience.

“I am fortunate to have her as a coach given my lofty goals. I have never been coached before and Hillary has been amazing about taking my feedback and planning around what she believes are my biggest physical and mental limiters to take me to new heights.”

Bike Build

DuraAce Di2, Zipp NSW (custom printed), Profile Design Svet 0 + T4 Extensions, Quarq Elsa R + Aero Rotor Q Rings, Torhans Bento Box, Shimano Pro Aerofuel Tri Saddle, and of course the fast TriRig Omega X brakes.