Many many many years back i had a bike buddy , i guess we are now talking 93/94 or so, who was riding a BARRACUDA.
Unfortunately he does not have the bike anymore because he had to leave it behind in order to save his life, he went biking on it's own in a very hot area, got lost, did not have any water left,...long story short,it's gone.
When I was riding along with him here in the Netherlands I was amazed by the bike handling and the build quality.
You do not see that many of them either.
A few months back I came in contact with Mark from Toronto Canada, and he is a big fan of BARRACUDA bikes.
He also has a fan based internet site , you should check it out, it is great, and if you have some info/pictures about the BARRACUDA brand you should drop him a line, he would love that.
I asked Mark why BARRACUDA is so special for him and this is his story:
My fascination began like most people who are back into the Retro MTB hobby. I was in my late teens back in the early 90's, and loved the sport. Unfortunately, since I was a kid, just then, I didn't have a whole lot of money. I frequented a few bike shops in my town, but they were mostly influenced by Roadies.
After a year or two, a new shop opened up. This was something quite different. They had the racks of bikes, but they also had some old livingroom furniture in the front, and tons of MTB magazines lying around. It was like the fusion between a Starbucks and a bike shop!
They also carried a new bike I had only seen in the magazines: Barracuda. I looked around and my eyes fell upon the Dos Equis XX Team bike. I couldn't take my eyes off of it. A sales rep asked me if I needed any info on it, and I simply asked for 15 minutes on the bike. They said "Take your time, have it back in 30 mins). Luckily for me, there are trails right near the shop!
I was sold on the bike but could only manage to scrape together $600. I planned on using the frame with some second hand bits I had lying around. So I purchased the frame and off I went. I couldn't believe all the stares and double takes I got on the walk home with this frame.
Now, right around this time I lost my job, and with a girlfriend, most of my money went into dating. I ended up taking the frame back to the shop and told them not to sell it as I would be back shortly to reclaim it. Unbeknownst to me, the shop folded up. The internet wasn't much back then and I had no other Barracuda resources in town. The dream died and the bike went with it.
Fast forward a few years, and the internet was a bit better. Ebay had taken off and I managed to find a 97 Dos Equis XX Team bike at auction. I won it for a few hundred dollars and was stoked, since it was NOS. It wasn't the same frame as what I had in 95, but it was close. It's been a good bike to me.
Not long ago, I'd say within the past year or so, I purchased a nice little application called Craig's Pal. This thing scours all of Craig's List for whatever searches you want to save. Of course, I put in a few Barracuda strings and have since come up lucky a few times now. I have in my posession once again a cherry 95 Dos Equis XX Team bike, but I've also managed to find a mint 94
A2X and even a custom built, professional Team Only frame, never offerred for public sale.
As with most out on the Retro MTB forums, this has become quite a hobby. We are now fortunate enough to have the money we wished we had when we were younger, and the sport and the bikes help us to hold onto our youth. Me? I'm not building wall art or trophies. All of my bikes will be ridden daily, and will see plenty of mud and dirt, as they were meant to.
Now, my web development background usually plays a part in my hobbies. I found it so difficult in obtaining information about Barracuda, I decided to put an end to it and create my own site. (http://www.barracudabicycles.com/)
I managed to track down former Pro riders, a Manager and I even spoke to some frame builders who were contracted to build up the team bikes. All had similar things to say in that Barracuda was EXTREMELY poorly run, and that when it folded, a lot of bills and debts went unpaid. Because of this, most people in the know, don't like to hear the word Barracuda.
I had no idea that it was that bad, or that (Barracuda owners) Jonathan Wege and Dave Southwell made so many enemies. It was hard for me to get information, as the people I spoke with often thought at first that I was glorifying them or the company. I had to let them know up front that it was the bikes I loved and that I simply wanted to document what happened. I kind of became an investigative journalist!
I'm pretty comfortable with the info I've collected so far, and actually stumble upon some more info now and then, as people find their way to the site. I also get a lot of kudos for creating it, as people from the USA, Canada, England, Australia, Germany and even small places like Finland and Holland still ride these bikes and love them.
so if you want to find out more about the BARRACUDA brand : visit his site or join the BARRACUDA forum and spread the word..
Mark: Thanks for your input dude!
Mark's internet site : http://www.barracudabicycles.com
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