by Steve Mondek
For the second year in a row, over the weekend of August 24–26th, the Tucker team from sales regions five and 32 hosted a Dealer Appreciation Ride in the Taylor Park region of Colorado. For those unfamiliar with the area, Taylor Park boasts some of the best and most sought after single-track offroad riding in the state. The base camp for the event was once again Harmel’s Ranch Resort located along the Taylor River between Gunnison and Crested Butte.
For this year’s ride, we had 29 dealers represented, which equated to roughly 40 dealer staff. Including Tucker employees and vendors, we had a total of 55 in attendance, which is 15 more than last year. Dealers began to show up on Saturday and were greeted by the Tucker team, vendor representatives, a warm meal and happy hour, and top-notch swag bags.
On Sunday morning, participants hit the breakfast buffet, followed by a riders meeting led by Kent Stockman and Eric Croy. After that, we hit the trails for a fun-filled day of riding in the Rocky Mountains. Riders were split into beginner, intermediate, and advanced groups and Eric and Kent were gracious enough to each lead a group along with local trail legends Mike Thuillier and Morrill Griffith. Each group rendezvoused mid-day at local rider Steve Weidner’s cabin located at the base of Flag Mountain where he hosted lunch. If you’ve ever been on a Colorado 500 or Malcolm Smith ride through the years, then you’ve likely been served BBQ by Steve and his brother Dave. After lunch, riders worked their way down the mountain and back to Harmel’s Ranch where they were greeted with cold beer, dinner, and a bonfire.
That evening, we recognized one of Tucker’s own, Kent Stockman. After 26 years of service with Tucker, Kent has decided to retire this year. In front of the dealers (most of them his) and vendors at the ride, we thanked him for his years of service and presented him with a framed Answer jersey with his name and rep number on the back that all of his dealers had signed. We also presented him with a new Arai moto helmet, a fancy bottle of scotch, and thanked him for his years of service. It was a heartfelt moment, and Kent received a standing ovation at the end.
Monday ran similarly as Sunday, with a breakfast buffet, and more riding with most packed up and on the road by 1:00 pm. The list of Tucker brands in attendance that supported this year’s ride included VP Racing, Answer Racing, ZULZ, FMF, ProTaper, 100%, XTrig, Arai, Hinson, KYB, and Motion Pro. Each stepped up in a big way to help make the second annual event a success. The Tucker marketing team also created and helped subsidize an awesome event t-shirt that each person in attendance was able to take home. Dealers had a blast riding the mountain trails, the weather was excellent, and the level of enthusiasm among those in attendance off the charts. We’re already getting excited about next year’s third annual Tucker Colorado Dealer Appreciation Ride! In the meantime, here are some video highlights from this year’s ride.