'Specialized' fit out improves Mooloolaba bike shop
CYCLE Zone Mooloolaba owners John Carey and Sarah Pollett moved to the Sunshine Coast from Victoria for lifestyle.
With their background in triathlon, ironman events and long-distance cycling, they were keen to live in a place that offered some of the world's best training locations.
Life had other plans.
Their good friend and fellow ironman Tavis Johannsen died suddenly in his sleep in October 2009 at the age of 42.
He was later found to have died of an enlarged heart, a tragic event that saw wife Fiona left behind to care for their two girls, Sophie and Lani, and his cycle shop in Mooloolaba.
John and Sarah came to Fiona's side and helped out with the business initially, before buying it outright.
The business, on Brisbane Rd, held a relaunch recently to show off a complete store re-fit.
"We carry Specialized bikes, and they helped us with the design and layout of the new shop fit," Mr Carey said.
"We gutted the place and started from scratch, so it all looks and feels different.
"We changed everything. There is the same stock but a lot more open space.
"The layout is improved, we have better changeroom and storage facilities and the workshop had a huge upgrade.
"It is just neater and tidier."
Mr Carey said business was steady and he was still able to "pay the bank". They count triathletes Caroline and Dave Dellow as customers, as well as Coast businessmen Garry Crick and Brett Graham all the way down to local mums, dads and kids.
"We can cater to anyone who wants a good quality bike that is reliable and enjoyable to ride."
Sarah does the business' books and works there Sundays, and is a physio at the Buderim Private Hospital during the week; while John is there most days.
He said they both regret not having enough time right now to get out on their bikes or go for a run.
"We'd love to...it's on the list, but not at the top.
"But we can't complain. There are lots of good people here in terms of customers. Garry Crick and Brett Graham are very good as a knowledge base. I can always talk to them for advice."
Also keeping the pair busy is the regular schedule of public events, including bike maintenance workshops, and a wedding to plan.
But Mr Carey said the original owner was never far from their minds.
"We wouldn't be here without Tavis and what he started, and we definitely acknowledge that," he said.
"We still see Fiona and the kids.
"Our aim is just to look after everyone as they come in. And we are planning on being here for a long time."
SECRETS: willing to deal with people, choose to sell good quality products, excellent staff