The 2020 Rothrock GRIT Gravel Grinder Race Gets Branded

by Mar 20, 2020Uncategorized

It’s probably no surprise to many of you that biking is one of my favorite activities…it’s referenced in my company name for goodness sake. So, when I get the opportunity to work with clients in the biking industry, I get super gitty. That’s exactly how I felt the entire time I had the privilege to work with Tanya Hampton in her planning of the Rothrock GRIT Gravel Grinder. 

Women’s Representation on the Trails

Tanya has abundant energy and is determined to change women’s representation in the biking world. Having jumped on a bike trail for the first time within the last few years, she found what seemed impossible achievable and took it to the next level by signing up for races. Noticing few women on the road, trails and racing, she found there were a lot of women who didn’t even know what they were missing out on. So Tanya is always encouraging more women to enjoy the great outdoors on two wheels – because she knows it can become any lady’s paradise.   

The Project

Tanya planned the June 6, 2020 Rothrock GRIT Gravel Grinder with an equal number of men’s and women’s spots and filled her 300 racer quota in just 2 months. Working with Freewheel Creative and other vendors to get it all done, Tanya has set the stage for a successful event now and in the future. Her project with Freewheel included logo design, branding, social media posts, flyers, graphics for giveaways and t-shirts.

GRIT Logo and Branding

Starting with the logo, Tanya wanted something that represented Rothrock Forest and the 7500 feet of climbing that transpires over the course of the 65 mile ride. Named GRIT, the fonts needed to invoke that teeth clenched, dirty shins, do-whatever-it-takes feeling riders are sure to experience along the way. We went with a grungy font for the word GRIT that is rotated to seemingly climb the outline of a mountain represented by a curved bike chain.

Tanya was able to brand her Bike Reg listing, single-page website and team uniforms with the logo, and give it to Dronediculous to add it to the video promo. Freewheel Creative added the logo to Facebook event headers and posts and other materials.

Flyer Design

The next step was to design a flyer for distribution at various biking events and to bike shops and cycling groups around the greater Central Pennsylvania area to promote the Rothrock GRIT Gravel Grinder. Utilizing the same fonts used in the logo, information about the event was arranged to pull your eye to the main points on the flyer. The background design depicts the appearance of Rothrock’s Seven Mountains from various viewpoints throughout the State Forest.

Rothrock GRIT Gravel Grinder Flyer
Rothrock GRIT Gravel Grinder Waterbottle Design
Designing the Waterbottle Giveaway

Every great race has merch—giveaways or items available for purchase. To start, a waterbottle was designed to give away to all race participants. The design included the GRIT logo and sponsorship logos for Specialized and Happy Valley Women’s Cycling. The race had evolved at this point into three lengths, which were referred to as Gritty (25 miles), Grittier (49 miles), and Grittiest (65 miles). I used a sketch of the elevation changes and broke it into three distances separating them with the sponsor logos. 

I then included the names of all the trails traveled within the elevation diagram…because sometimes, that’s what you remember most! You’ll recall the trail that took you to the best view, where you got a flat, or which one tested your limits. Like Thickhead Mountain Rd…anyone that’s ridden Rothrock knows Thickhead is the grittiest gravel trail of all! 

A few different designs were submitted for consideration but this one won out for 2020.

T-shirt Design

25-65 miles with up to 7500 ft of climbing is something worth remembering – whether for the pride in the accomplishment, a reminder of the beautiful scenic ride, or simply bragging rights. So, a t-shirt was designed pulling elements from the waterbottle design. We placed the Rothrock GRIT Gravel Grinder logo on the front of the t-shirt and the elevation design on the back with sponsor logos. A heathered color was chosen for the t-shirt to go with the gritty event in green…to represent the luscious green landscape of Rothrock State Forest.

GRIT T-Shirt Design

Social media posts

To promote the event online, Tanya set up a Facebook page and a website page through the local bike shop with details. For Facebook, I created several posts to get her started that included the logo and design we had come up with together. 

In addition to the logo, a word collage was created with synonyms to the word ‘grit.’ We also used various pictures that she and friends had taken while riding in rothrock. 

GRIT Word Collage
GRIT Ladies Post
GRIT Ladies Post 2
GRIT Ladies Post 2
GRIT Sponsors Post

An Integrated Design Project

It’s been an absolute joy working on the GRIT Gravel Grinder project. Seeing the elements come together and grow into a complete set of branding and marketing tools that they can utilize now and for future races. 

If you’re interested in learning more about the race, check out the Rothrock GRIT Gravel Grinder Facebook Page and BikeReg page for further details. 

If you have a project you’d like to discuss with Freewheel Creative, reach out.