Massan’s Low – a San Francisco Giant!
Photos and words by Kyle Kelley
Massan has been around since the beginning of all this track bike shit. His fluid riding, effortlessly controlled hill bombs and huge Sugino Zen chainrings made his name a staple on bike forums and in bike shops long ago and his timeless style have earned him a lasting place in the bike industry as a whole. Unlike many of the early track bike videos, which are easily dated by old fixie tricks or bunny hops, Massan’s videos are only dated by the bike he is on. From the era of his blacked out Bianchi Pista Concept (remember the HUF bike?) to his time with Leader, his videos have always highlighted his effortless style and amazing bike control.
To say that Massan just rides is an understatement though. He never looks like he’s smashing, but he is. He never looks like he’s flying, but trust me, he is. Like many of the skateboarding greats, people have said Massan is boring to watch because he makes this shit look too damn easy. There’s never been a hill he wouldn’t drop or a gap he wouldn’t shoot. Massan’s calm/cool demeanor translates well to the bike, making him one of the most graceful cyclists on a track bike.
Years ago I was visiting San Francisco and made plans to hangout with Massan. Usually we spend our time talking about cassette tapes, hip-hop and b&w photography, but on that day I needed to swing by Andrew Low’s place to say hi and asked Massan if he wanted to come along. Andrew makes exactly the kind of bicycles that Massan likes to ride – oversized aluminum tubes, aggressive geometry and fast as hell! And it doesn’t hurt that they’re made in the city that he came from. The rest, as they say, is history. Andrew and Massan have been working together since that day and this bike is their latest collaboration.
Massan’s new Low is the SS Crit, the first production track bike designed specifically for the track bike criteriums happening these days. The first thing that comes to mind when I see this bike is the San Francisco Giants! I’m not sure if that was Massan’s intention, but what better way to show San Francisco pride than to paint your bike Giant’s orange. This build has Massan written all over it with the massive Sugino Zen chainring, Thomson post and stem, Vittoria rubber, Phil Woods and of course some HED Belgium Blacks!
Massan..I salute you!