Most kids from the 80’s and 90’s era would remember this fictional character well enough. Axed by his own countryman, he had to take a stand to defend himself. Sylvester Stallone did not bow down; instead he gave it all he had. Flashed forward thirty years later to the heart of Malacca, Cycling Malaysia came across a cyclist’s version of Rambo, Michael Goh. And instead of a survival knife or an M60 machine gun, Michael’s companion consists of none other than his bicycle shop, Let’s Cycle Sdn Bhd.
Familiarizing with your Environment
A quaint shop located next to a mechanic shop, the bright blue signboard presented XDS Cycle World proudly. A few steps within, splashes of green accompanied the black walls. “My favorite color’, Michael grinned. Hung from the ceilings were bicycle wheels and frames stood proudly at the side. This was no ostentatious bike shop, it clearly sent one message, and “you’re in the hands of a professional who places his trust in the XDS brand”. This can be further emphasized as he is decked in an XDS jersey. Michael focuses more on the XDS bicycles itself, not its accessories. His believe is that the bike geometry plays a huge role compared to pricing. Thanks to his years of experience in cycling, his concerns lie more on servicing.
He is the mechanic in his shop. He is also the sales assistant and the cashier. To sum it up, Michael is the only person running his shop. However this often leads to customers having to wait. However, they are perfectly happy with waiting as not many bicycle shop proprietors have this much cycling experience. Hence, his customers will take heed to Michael’s recommendation when purchasing cycling products. His customers come as far as Negeri Sembilan, Ipoh, Penang and Kuala Lumpur. Due to time constraints, he does not custom build bicycles. Instead he only caters complete racing bikes to his cliental.
So why choose to establish a bicycle shop in a neighborhood instead of a bustling town? Even he knows strategically it is not an ideal location. There are very few walk-in customers, most of the time his shop is filled with his regulars. However he had to opt to locate there since it is a stone throw away from his house making it more convenient to send his children to school. Michael charges 100 ringgit for a fully bicycle servicing. His business caters more towards amateur cyclists and not professionals. The customers’ most frequent add-ons to their bike would consist mostly of bike meters and lights.
The heap of shiny medals piled up on the glass table sang glorious tales of Michael’s golden days. They were the existing proof of Michael’s deep passion in cycling. He was no war veteran but he had contributed to Malaysia’s cycling era on his two-wheeler. The wrinkles on his face were not due to age but from years of experience. The owner of this humble bike shop was actually Malacca’s former state rider back in the 1980’s. He was under the state government for two years so he was given allowances, training, equipment and apparels. Behind that creased smile, a painful history flickered under.
Just like how Rambo was deceived by his own nation, all the endless promises uttered by the government was nothing but dust. The journey continued with another hit to Michael’s passion in cycling. He had to quit cycling for a while after getting into a severe accident. The deeper blow beneath the tale was that the government did not have the finances to support him anymore.
Just like Rambo, Michael stood alone in his cycling journey. His parents pleaded for him to stop so Michael had to abandon his interest in joining races with other Malacca state riders. He attempted to work in different industries but cycling was what lied in his heart. His roots pulled him back and he rejoined the cycling industry after many years.