Over at Portlandize.com they’re expressing a similar sense of dissapointment in the Oregon Manifest’s ultimately braindead judging.

A few things that I feel were anti-utility about all three of the top picks: They all have aggressive geometry, for an urban utility bike. They are all “upright” in the sense that they don’t have drop bars, but they all have saddles even with or higher than the bars. They all use disc brakes which, while strong, are easily bent out of shape, and lose strength and squeal like mad if they are out of true. They are not as weather resistant as hub brakes, and they are more awkward to fit into a design, as you have to have braze-ons on the frame for them to attach to, whereas most hub brakes can simply use a generic clamp to clamp the brake arm to a standard frame. They all have completely exposed chains, not even a chain guard. They all technically meet the requirements for the competition, but just by a hair’s breadth.

And this is it the requirements of the competition perhaps did not mean what I thought they did. My bad. Portlandize added that BikePortland got the scoop on why the judges went the way they did:

As reported by Jonathan at BikePortland, who had a chat with the judges about why they chose the Pereira bicycle as the winner, they chose this bicycle 1) because it had electric assist, 2) because it is a replacement for a car. Their rationale for it being a replacement for a car, is because it has electric assist, because it has a lockable “trunk” (the carbon-fiber box on the front), and because it has a stereo. They also, despite being adamant that the field test was not a race, made note of the fact that the electric assist allowed him to beat other contestants who didn’t have electric assist, in a 50 mile ride over a small mountain range with offroad sections – because that’s a common usage of an urban utility bike, right?


Disappointment at Oregon Manifest | Portlandize