Meet the Clarks in our three-part interview
Our local dealer spotlight takes us to the sunshine state to meet the Trikke world’s best-selling local Trikke dealer of all time, a brick-and-mortar store that has sold an estimated 10,000 Trikkes. How do they do it? Find out in our three-part interview with the dynamic duo behind Trikke Tampa, Andy and Jana Clark.
They met the three-wheel wonder by accident—in a parking lot, of all places. Since then, they’ve gone on to establish what some would call a mini-empire, selling more Trikkes than any other local dealer, cornering the early market for online sales and staging several group rides that were well attended.
In short, they’ve created their own Trikke scene and some would argue, made Tampa, Florida, the very first hotbed of the carving culture. Yet in this ever-changing world, so too is Trikke Tampa, which now operates inside the Clark’s newest creation, a bike store called Street Fit 360.
Can they remain America’s Top Trikke Dealer while peddling bicycles? TrikkeWorld went in search of answers in this Q&A with the Clarks.
TrikkeWorld Magazine: How did you first discover the world of Trikke?
Andy Clark: Jana and I used to own a fitness center and one of our clients, Connie, introduced us to it. She owned three of them, one of which she won in a Trikke testimonial contest. She brought it in to us at the Fitness Center and had it in the parking lot. I couldn’t quite figure it out initially but thought it was an extremely intriguing machine, thought it fit right in with our line of business, so we ordered a T8 and T12 in July, 2005.
TWM: What made you act on it so quickly?
AC: We’d never heard or seen the Trikke before and whenever Connie brought it in, I was just, like, oh, my gosh, and thought: what can we do to make people more aware of it? At that point I started a conversation with John Simpson [CEO of Trikke Tech, Inc.].
TWM: Jana, what was your first reaction to the Trikke?
Jana Clark: Really, you wanna know?
TWM: Give us the truth.
JC: I was a typical person trying to learn. It took me practicing every day, trying to figure it out, but I was intrigued. I get bored kinda easily and the Trikke is the one thing that, after almost six years, I still enjoy. I enjoy the riding, the fitness aspect. I just don’t get bored with it.
TWM: How about you, Andy. What do you love about the Trikke?
AC: It’s a constant discovery when riding the Trikke. You don’t just pick it up or just learn it. It takes time to master it. One of the big things I always remember is, one of the first times I talked to Gildo [Beleski, inventor of the Trikke]. He told me, ‘Andy I’ve been riding since 1990. You gotta constantly experiment with your ride. Every time I ride I still experiment, to make the ride go efficiently, to make it go smoother.’ It’s one of the things I’ve always remembered and something I continue to do today. I’m always discovering different ways of making it go.
TWM: How often do you ride these days?
AC: Not quite near as much as we used to, since we diversified our business to become a full-service bike shop. Jana is pretty religious about riding 3-4 days a week. Jana is a very health conscious person. She’s a lifetime member of Weight Watchers and a very fit lady.
TWM: So you go from hearing about Trikke in the parking lot of a fitness center to becoming the best-selling local Trikke dealer of all time.
AC: And we have been since shortly after becoming a dealer. Whenever I advertise we’re the top dealer in the US, it’s true.