2015 Sea Otter Classic day 1

Another Sea Otter Classic has arrived and this is now the 25th edition. Thursday is usually the calm before the storm and the weather played along nicely as I wandered through the massive expo area to see what is new and unique, but also what makes this event so special and popular. If you live anywhere near the Laguna Seca Raceway outside of Monterey, California , you ought to drive here and check it out yourself as festivities continue through Sunday. Here though are some impressions from today.

Prologo unveiled the T.Gale saddle here at the 2015 Sea Otter Classic and will be available in a few different variations. Frederik Van Lierde is already testing one and this saddle should be available by July. MSRP starts at Euro 180 and an optional bottle carrier mount will also be available. The nose of this saddle is about 1.5 inches wide or 3.82 cm.

Quark introduced the Riken AL power meter, and this one will retail for $799 and will be available starting tomorrow.

I bought Nutcase helmets for my little boys and this cute space version is one of many new offerings from this brand.

GU has redone their graphics and brought a couple new flavors to the 2015 Sea Otter Classic.

The Rivet is a new aero helmet from Giant and we have seen John Degenkolb storm to a big win in it at Paris-Roubaix just a few days ago. Plus he won Milan - San Remo too, under that Rivet.

There was a lot of bling in the Raleigh booth and the sun certainly played along to aid the effect.

A passionate youngster gets a wrist band that allows him to get onto the pump track.

Robbie McEwen is currently in the USA for a bit of vacation with his 13-year old son, but also to spend some time in the Infocrank booth.

The Ryders Eyewear crew was ready for rainy and windy conditions, but were not complaining about sun and blue skies.

The Open Cycles crew soon will offer a new gravel frame set, lovingly referred to as UP, or Unbeaten Path. Frame and fork will retail for $2,900 or Euro 2,900, but first consumers need to vote for either this orange color...

...or the brown one that is slowly becoming the favorite of Gerard Vroomen.

There are always interesting vehicles in the expo area and the parking lot. Shinola Bikes out of Detroit showed this green beauty in their booth.

The umbrella came in handy for the Pedro's crew, even though it did not rain a drop.

Tifosi is now offering this Pro S.F.H. kit for $150. Basically that is 3 different shades (Shield, Full and Half) with spare lenses included. How about that?

Meanwhile the kids were busy flying, jumping and cruising around.

Action during one of the criterium races held today at Laguna Seca.

A bit later the Cat 3 and Cat 4, plus Masters 35+ women were at the start for a 40 minute crit.

As the day came to an end and most folks started to leave, a bunch of Fizik folks returned to Laguna Seca Raceway in the spirit of the event.

All images © Herbert Krabel / slowtwitch.com