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Ere Research: Revolutionising Cycling with Swiss Precision

Piet van der Velde and the team at ERE Research are quite achievers in the bike industry. But having designed for such brands as Pro-Shimano, SRAM, Colnago, FSA, Prologo, Selle Italia and Rapha, they have quite the story to tell.

In the realm of high-end bicycle parts, one brand with several significant points of interest stands out and that’s the small but surprisingly large ERE Research. 

Founded by a group of seasoned bike industry veterans, the Swiss company has quickly become synonymous with cutting-edge design, impressive technology, and regular innovation.

Since its inception on April 1st, 2017, ERE has been on a mission to ‘redefine the cycling experience.’ 

Piet van der Velde of ERE Research.

With a pedigree rooted in designing and creating products for industry giants such as Trek, Specialized, Shimano, and numerous other big bike brands, the founders bring over 20 years of collective expertise to the table.

At the heart of ERE Research is founder, Piet van der Velde. A former elite cyclist turned product design maestro, Piet’s passion for cycling permeates every aspect of the brand. With a keen focus on aerodynamics, performance ergonomics, and saddle design, Piet is the driving force behind ERE Research’s quest to elevate every rider’s experience.

We spoke with Piet to find out a little more about ERE.

Bicycling Australia: Thanks so much for speaking with us, first up can you give readers some background about your career in cycling? 

Piet: I started racing at 13 years old. At that time my doctor suggested I go cycling as a therapy after I broke my knee in a football match at school. It stuck, and I never turned away from cycling and ended up as a continental rider. 

When I had to stop racing due to heart rhythm failures and had a heart operation, it stopped me from moving up the pro-rider ranks. I did later race again in the USA as a master rider and won some more races on the Road and Cyclocros scene and became a Lunchride WorldChampion when riding for Specialized – a very honourable race to win.

The company now make a wide range of wheels and tyres along with numerous other products.

BA: How did you then morph from pro rider to a key player in the bike industry? 

Piet: During my race career as a Conti rider I was working for then Sponsor Koga Miyata. That was the time I suffered heart rhythm failures and had to stop racing. I decided to join that company 100 per cent and started my career in the industry.

BA: Many readers may not realise it but you’ve worked with some surprisingly major brands – can you list some of the companies you’ve designed parts, accessories and components for? 

Piet: Well there’s Pro-Shimano, SRAM, Colnago, FSA, Prologo, Selle Italia, Selle San Marco, Rapha, Trek-Bontrager, Specialized, Koga, Mate Bike, Supacaz, Velo, Senso, Browning, Vandervelde, Sportourer, Batavus, Oval Concepts, Cannondale, Kodiak. 

BA: One of ERE’s more left-field products is the Comfort Trigger Saddle designed for Paris-Roubaix.

ERE’s Comfort Trigger Saddle designed for the Paris-Roubaix

Piet: Yes, the Paris-Roubaix is a very odd demanding race, I was lucky to ride the recon with Team Saxo Bank the day before the race in 2010 when Fabian Cancellara won it. The problem there is transferring your power effectively to the bike/road while bouncing around on the saddle/cobbles and not losing half of it in the process.

Shock-absorbing rims, tyres and other parts of the bike then come into play to dampen the road rage of the cobbles to ultimately reach a more effective power transfer along with grip and the build-up of speed. Then while doing that as a product designer you start to think about “What can I do to make this better?” for the riders. Later I came up with the “Comfort Trigger System” where you can change the tension in the saddle by hand during riding and create more flex in the saddle and therefore a less bouncy ride when the road surface is demanding it.

BA: ERE has surged ahead since 2017 – a period that includes the notorious COVID years. Can you tell us about some of the product development in this time?

Piet: ERE Research started making performance tyres for the simple reason that my last paying job at Selle Italia I had a non-compete that did not allow me to make saddles for a while, so a tyre seemed the right challenge.

The tyre brought the issue of tubeless compatibility, that back then was new for road bikes and that sparked us to make wheels as well to make the whole tyre-wheel system work well together. Then it was time to get back into saddles, bartape etc … till the range we have today.

In terms of global presence, the ERE Research brand has distribution in 26 countries worldwide at the moment and is producing products in Asia, and Europe. So we’ve come a long way since 2017 and that includes the COVID years.

BA: Are there any new products we can expect to see in the near future? 

Piet: Yes … I can’t say much but we have more aero stuff and more saddles on the way … stay tuned!

For more about ERE Research and their product range visit www.ereresearch.com

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