Titan Racing has joined forces with design guru Hasie & the Robots, to create two Switch gravel bikes for Valley Electrical Titan Racing’s HB Kruger and Matt Keyser as unique as the man’s art. The idea started when the UCI announced earlier this year that for the first time ever there will be a Gravel World champs that will be held in Italy on the 15th of October. The Titan Racing team recognized this as an opportunity to provide participating team riders with bikes that will inspire and reward at the same time.
As avid followers of his work, they reached out to Hasie and The Robots, and soon after the project was set in motion. Hasie & The Robots is a brand created and owned by artist and illustrator, Johan Johnston. Based in Cape Town South Africa, he creates original designs, focusing on limited edition and individual creations by collaborating with brands that produce quality products. Always on the scout for projects that will stimulate his senses, keep his skills sharp and creative monster fed, Johan jumped at the opportunity to collab with Titan Racing on this unique project.
The hunt to get the bikes together was on, with gravel being such a fast-growing discipline and bikes being in high demand, this was a struggle. Titan Racing were able to get two framesets from the factory and had them airfreighted out to South Africa. The two frames arrived with a little over three weeks to go until the riders had to line up at the start of Around the Pot.
Jared Mahaffey, owner of BMC: Bicycle Maintenance Company and custom spray painter extraordinaire was tasked with prepping the frames, the red and white fade spray jobs and applying the clear coat to keep the paint jobs fresh. The art was hand drawn by Johan Johnston with digital mock-ups, that were used for sign-off, the only form of guidance for the project.
“Initially, we were looking to have both frames done with some reference to our corporate colors. Johan sent us two design options with black and red as the base colors. After some discussions, we asked for an option using white instead of red just to see how it would look. In the end the only choice that would make sense was ‘one of each, please!’ Along with that, we settled on a design that was a bit more linear as we felt it worked well with the lines of the frame. Once we had the reference designs locked and loaded, we left Johan to do what he does best – and he knocked it straight out of the park.”
– Iwan Kemp, Titan Racing Marketing
“Working with Titan Racing is a nice and refreshing opportunity. As a brand, Hasie & The Robots has always been aligned with the underdogs, and with this project, we showed that you don’t need to be the biggest and the baddest to make the most noise.”
– Johan Johnston, Hasie & The Robots
“The team has had plans for a while to go race Swiss Epic and looking at the dates there was a Gravel World Series event in Belgium about 5 hours away from where we will be a week later, so the timing works well. The bikes are built and the next step is to get ourselves some slots for gravel world champs with the qualification race we’re doing on the 27th of August. And after that, hopefully racing these incredible bikes at world champs in October!”
– Rossouw Bekker, Valley Electrical Titan Racing Team Manager
“The first time I saw our new Titan Racing Switch bikes I fell in love. It is really great to see how a couple of South African brands like Titan Racing and Hasie and the Robots are able to collaborate and create such a work of art. The bike rides just as good as it looks and I feel super privileged to have a one-of-a-kind gravel bike that will make heads turn at every event it lines up.”
– HB Kruger, Valley Electrical Titan Racing Team
“HB and I received one-off custom gravel racing bikes from Titan Racing who collaborated with Hasie and the Robots. I have ridden the bike a few times and it definitely pulls a lot of attention. I can’t wait for the next few gravel bikes so we can do these bikes justice.”
– Matt Keyser, Valley Electrical Titan Racing Team
The special edition Titan Racing Switch frames are based on our stock carbon model. The Switch is definitely on the racier side of gravel bikes with close attention being paid to offer an all-round versatile bike that can take on a variety of off-road terrains as riders look to push their limits of racing and adventure. A through-and-through gravel grinder, the Switch has been designed for the beaten path, weight has been kept to a minimum at every point whilst maintaining value, a key element for most as a gravel bike will not be your only bike.