Brandon Semenuk and Brett Rheeder are among several big-named international riders attending this year.( Photos: 3 )
Around the time that the new Enduro rolled out, Specialized also announced an update to their Butcher tire with a new Grid Trail casing. This thicker casing sees beefed up support throughout, and is said to have “increased its pinch flat protection by 15% and puncture protection by 30%”. The tread pattern and compound have also been updated compared to the original Butcher from a few years ago. Roughly speaking, in terms of duty, this new revision falls between the previous “Grid” casing and the more rugged “Black Diamond” casing – meaning it should be better suited to modern trail riding. Details 29 x 2.3 “, psi 25-50, approximate weight 900g (994g, our scale) 29 x 2.6 “, psi 20-40, approximate weight 960g (1032g, our scale) Additional casing support over past models Tubeless ready Foldable, butyl wrapped bead $ 60.00 USD Originally designed by Sam Hill way back in the day, the Butcher’s current layout hasn’t strayed far from its original tread pattern. In the last update a couple years ago, the knobs received some tweaks to their shape – namely the “sawtooth” inside edge on the corner knobs as well as on the outside edge of every other center row. While the widths didn’t quite stack up to be perfectly accurate, it’s worth expanding on more that what’s revealed in the photo above. The 2.6 came in at just over 2.4 “, and the 2.3” came in at 2.34 “. While that might suggest that there is hardly a difference in size due to their closeness in width, that isn’t quite the case. The 2.6” had quite a bit more volume, was taller and had a rounder shape. Personally I prefer a slightly rounder tire up front and a slightly more squared off tire out back, so no gripes from me. Speaking of inaccuracies – it’s worth noting that these did come in at 166 grams over their claimed weight for a pair, which is substantial enough that it warrants mentioning. A big part of the story here is the new “Grid Trail” casing – as mentioned earlier, it sits between the old Grid casing and the Blk Dmnd carcass. By adding new layers of reinforcement, this brings the Butcher to a very usable, middle of the road weight and thickness that will appeal to most trail riders. For longer travel applications in extra rocky areas, some riders will still want to consider the Blk Dmnd – at least out back anyway. On the trail Out of the gate I was able to run the new Butchers at lower pressures than I had been able to before – and not just two to increased confidence that I wouldn’t pinch flat … There is also the issue of sidewall support in the corners. Right away it was apparent that the new casing lands right where it should in terms of duty and I couldn’t definitely feel the increased support on trail, mainly in snappy corners and on flat landings. Personally, I’m not one to mess with low pressures, but for what it’s worth these felt just right at around 23PSI front and 25PSI rear. Considering how aggressive the knobs are, and how soft the rubber is, the Butcher actually rolls along pretty quickly, without too much fuss. With absolutely no science to back this up, Braking and cornering are both standouts with this tread pattern, as you can really feel the tire dig in nicely in a wide range of conditions, from hardpack to loose to deep loam. If there was one complaint with the tire, it wouldn’t be that the rubber compound isn’t soft enough, but rather that it isn’t slow enough. Generally, when a rubber compound doesn’t have something in it to slow down the rebound, it can be a little pingy and slightly unpredictable – particularly in loose over hardpack type conditions. While I think the rubber compound does strike a pretty good overall balance between traction, durability and frequency absorption, I think the ride quality would improve if the knobs didn’t snap back as quickly and the tires would be less nervous in hairball situations. As far as clearing mud goes, the Butcher did seem to pack up in mucky conditions a bit more than its slightly spikier competitors like a Schwalbe Magic Mary, but with rows of 4 knobs across and broad channels for clearance, it was pretty darn good overall and rolls faster than Magics. Lastly, on the topic of size and volume, I personally wouldn’t run a 2.6 “front and rear, and most likely wouldn’t go 2.6 out back with any tire. But the combination of 2.6 up front and 2.3 out back was nice – suitable for modern trail riding. Added volume up front provided a bit more give and float up front, making it easier to confidently weight the front end. Out back, the lower profile and more squared off tire didn’t fold as easily under heavy weight, and was easy to punch into ruts and catch berms. If I remember correctly, the last 2.6 ” Butcher was a bit bigger than this. Riders who aren’t really a fan of “plus” size and high volume tires should not shrug off the new 2.6 “- the volume isnot overblown, but rather, it is right on the mark. Overall In the grand scheme of things, the big story here is the “just right” casing. In the past, the lighter duty version of this tire was a bit flimsy, but now it has received the beefing up that it deserves. It also sees a few other small, but worthy refinements … The Butcher is a classic tread pattern that isn’t going anywhere anytime soon and rightly so. It’s a great all around tire that zips along pretty quickly despite its aggressive looking tread. While I think most riders in most situations will appreciate the soft compound, I can’t help but wonder if the tire would be that much better if it remained just as soft, but had more of a slow rebound feel. In any case, one thing is certain – at just $ 60 per tire and pretty darn good long term durability, Specialized is offering far better value than just about all of the competition – that’s for sure. www.specialized.com
The rider list includes some legendary DarkFEST veterans as well as some young guns.( Photos: 5, Comments: 1 )
Yuba Bicycles Launches Three Transformative Products To Kick Off 2020 Information provided by Yuba Bicycles Yuba Bicycles (Yuba), a global leader in cargo bicycles and accessories, today announced three new product additions to further define its position as a forerunner in the cargo space. Designed by the team in California, these products include a new feature-packed compact cargo bike for the entry-level market, an industry-first weather-protective rear canopy for longtails rear canopy for longtail weather protection and an entirely new kickstand design to increase bike loading and unloading safety and stability. Yuba’s Pop Top Cover is the first and only longtail cargo bike rain and snow cover for kids. One of the most requested items from customers, the Pop Top Cover shields precious cargo from rain, snow and frosty winds when riding around town. It also protects passengers from strong sun in the summer and includes front/rear windows (with zippers and hook and loop straps) and easy-open side panels to let in fresh air. The new Kombi compact cargo bike was designed for those seeking to join the cargo lifestyle at the entry-level with a high-quality product that is in line with Yuba’s stellar reputation. Melding the functionality of the Yuba’s Boda Boda and Mundo models, the Kombi was designed in-house by a veteran team of engineers to give the end user the highest level of confidence in ride quality and safety. Priced under $1K and loaded with strong features, including mechanical disc brakes, puncture-resistant tires, the ability to be stored upright, and a carrying capacity of two to three kids or up to 440 lbs (including rider), this bike has already seen incredible momentum in Europe since being launched there last fall. “Our mission has always been to create the highest-quality, game-changing products that let people commute by bike and carry cargo without compromising ride quality or safety,” said Justin Gottlieb, sales and marketing director and US business leader of Yuba. “All three of these innovations are aligned with our ultimate reason for being – to limit environmental degradation by making distinct, active, boundary-pushing mobility solutions – and we’re confident about their success in North America.” Finally, the other problem Yuba solved this year is the tippy cargo bike conundrum. With a cargo bike fully loaded with stuff and/or kids, it becomes more difficult for some riders to keep the bike balanced when mounting and dismounting. Enter Yuba’s new Roots Double Kickstand.The widest longtail kickstand on the market (at 30 inches) now makes loading and unloading a heavy-laden cargo bike a breeze. Controlled by a cable-actuated hand lever within the cockpit, the Roots’ unique design eliminates the need to step off the bike to set the kickstand, increasing rider balance and safety. When ready to park, pull the lever down and each leg of the Roots drops down simultaneously, “rooting” the bike and offering unprecedented support for little riders who want to climb on and off all by themselves. When ready to ride, roll the bike forward and the Roots folds up and out of the way. See the Roots Kickstand in action! The Kombi, priced at $999 MSRP, is available in two colors, gold and blue. The Pop Top is priced at $200 MSRP and is compatible with all Spicy Curry and Sweet Curry models. The Roots Double Kickstand is priced at $200 and is compatible with all Yuba Spicy Curry and Sweet Curry models. All three products are available for shipment to retailers now. ABOUT YUBA BICYCLES Everything we do at Yuba Bicycles is done to help change the way people commute while carrying gear, humans, pets and more. Our bikes put smiles on people’s faces as the wind hits their cheeks, as they reduce their carbon footprint and as they realize a more economical and sustainable alternative to a motorized vehicle. With more than 19 years of experience solely focused on the cargo bicycle category, Yuba Bicycles designs and manufactures award-winning bicycles and accessories, and is considered a global leader in its niche. Visit yubabikes.com to learn more about our lineup of premium cargo and e-cargo bicycles, or to find a dealer near you. THERE ARE SO MANY WAYS TO GET ELECTRIC BIKE ACTION In print, from the Apple newsstand, or on your Android device, from Google. Available from the Apple Newsstand for reading on your iPad, iPhone or iPod Touch. Subscribe Here For more subscription information contact (800) 767-0345 Got something on your mind? Let us know at hi-torque.com The post Yuba Bicycles Launches Three Transformative Products To Kick Off 2020 appeared first on Electric Bike Action.
The organizers of NEMBAfest announced today that the 2020 edition of the festival would not take place on Vermont’s Kingdom Trails, while they search for a more suitable venue for 2021. The announcement comes amid trail access changes on Darling Hill, where three landowners recently decided against allowing mountain bike access on their respective properties Read More The post NEMBAfest Cancelled appeared first on BIKE Magazine.
Joss Winter was one of our Decathlon Summer of Cycling winners in 2019. After spending two years at a desk dreaming of bike adventures, Joss embarked on her ‘tour of friends’ ride, cycling around the UK on a Triban Women’s RC 520 to visit friends and family, camping along the way. Here Joss tells the story of her adventures on the bike. My ‘tour of friends’ last summer was partly about riding my bike more, and partly about reconnecting with friends and family, and it was a fantastic experience, like no other. My goal was to visit the people that I felt like I’d neglected over the past two years as work got in the way. No more excuses of trains being too expensive to travel on – just me and my bike and a whole load of adventure. Since picking up my Triban bike from Decathlon earlier in 2019, I’ve managed to explore a lot more of the country than I was expecting! I have loved having the freedom to stick to the road, or switching it up and going off-road for a chunk of my ride, and the bike has also helped me reconnect with friends who I haven’t seen for a long time. Decathlon Summer of Cycling winner is back in business on gravel Decathlon Summer of Cycling winner finds it’s a case of mind over matter Interesting-looking, impromptu turns helped to make Joss’ rides more varied. Joseph Branston My favourite ride to date on the Triban was my journey home from the Northumbria coast on the scorching August bank holiday weekend last summer. I had a rough plan of places to see but I also wanted to follow my nose and take interesting-looking turns instead of just sticking to a set route. My first stop was the Drift Cafe on the east coast of Northumberland for the best veggie haggis breakfast and to meet family friends, who told me about a military road through the Coquet Valley. On the bike, the journey was spectacular – and I was lucky to have some of the best weather of the summer They were right – it really was the best road in the county, following the Cheviot Hills to the Scottish border, where I followed a fire track to Kielder Forest with no end of gravel tracks to navigate. Having passed Hadrian’s Wall, I bivvied close to the dark-sky observatory near Alston, and was treated to a few shooting stars. The next day, I made it to Carlisle to meet a friend for a McDonald’s breakfast. The ride from here took me across the Yorkshire Dales, following National Cycle Network routes 68 and 71 down to the village of Malham, where another friend met me for dinner. Decathlon’s Triban bike is designed and tested in Flanders. Joseph Branston Having the bike has actually reacquainted me with friends and family more than I thought. I would never consider driving or getting the train between Carlisle and Malham, but it seemed to make sense on the bike, and the journey was spectacular. I was lucky to have some of the best weather of the summer, too, and had the good fortune to bivvy in the dry, as I did through south Wales earlier in the season. As well as sticking to the road, Joss also went off-road – just to mix things up. Joseph Branston Since getting back from that Northern England trip (and a journey on the Triban to the Purbeck peninsula to celebrate my grandmother’s 90th birthday), my plans changed slightly as I found a new job working for cycling charity, Sustrans. I have now converted my Triban into a beastly commuting machine, ideal for my silly near-50km commute. My summer of cycling might be over, but my riding won’t stop!
[Golden, Colorado] – The Yeti / FOX Factory team was announced today and will include two-time Enduro World Series (EWS) champion Richie Rude, who has raced with Yeti / FOX since he was fifteen and signed for an additional three years, and local Colorado racer Shawn Neer. Neer finished strong in 2019, including being a key member of the three-man USA team that won the Trophy of Nations title and finishing 15th overall in the EWS Series. As one of the most decorated riders on the EWS circuit, Rude claimed a spot on the podium for every race he competed in during the 2019 season. “I’ve been racing for Yeti / FOX since I was a kid. The team is dialed, I’m stoked on the bikes and look forward to another great year,” Rude said during a recent trip to the Yeti factory in Golden, Colorado. Teammate Shawn Neer plans to carry this momentum into the upcoming season and recently headed to California to train with Rude for two-weeks. The Yeti / FOX Factory race program is unique in that it has three tiers – the World team, a National and a Development (Devo) team. This structure has been in place for over a decade and has been integral in developing some of the best riders in the sport. The Yeti / FOX National Team will be led by Carson Eiswald and Jubal Davis. Eiswald, from Bellingham, WA, made the jump to the National team early in 2019 after multiple podium appearances and though he was sidelined at the end of the season with an injury, looks to be a force on the circuit this year. Veteran racer Jubal Davis returns for 2020. Davis is a consistent podium contender on the national circuit and his international experience will help fast track younger Yeti riders in their development. Davis also battled injuries in 2019 and is looking forward to getting back on the bike for 2020. The Yeti / FOX Devo Team has an exciting and promising core of young racers. Quinn Reece and Lauren Bingham will lead the Yeti Devo team. Reece secured his first pro podium in 2019 and Bingham is the current US National Junior Enduro Champion. Both return with plans to step into the national circuit. New additions of Warren Kniss and Dillon Santos puts the team in a strong position to reclaim the Big Mountain Enduro title. The team will also benefit from expanded development and coaching opportunities. Expect to see some of these athletes compete in the North American Continental Enduro Series and other high-profile, international events. Yeti Cycles president, Chris Conroy, is excited about this year’s riders “This should be a great year for Yeti racing. Richie and Shawn are at the top of their games and our National and Devo teams are packed with strong and talented young riders.” Long-time Team Manager Damion Smith will continue to oversee the successful Yeti / Fox Factory Race Program. Team mechanical support will be provided by the experienced lead mechanic, Shaun “Polar Bear” Hughes and assisted by Mark Hild. “I’m excited about the upcoming year of racing with legacy riders and the new upcoming talent. Our roster is as strong as ever. We’ll have the best combination of equipment, support and mentorship for the entire team. We’re all prepared and ready to compete for podiums around the globe.” – Damion Smith The Yeti / FOX Factory Team continues to thrive with the support of long-time and generous sponsors that offer high-performance products put to the test on the most grueling racecourses in the world. Sponsors for 2020 include: Fox, Maxxis, Shimano, DT Swiss, Ergon, Toyota, OneUp Components, Giro, Renthal Cycling Motorex, CushCore, Backcountry Research, Chris King, Stages Cycling, Victory Circle Graphix, Honey Stinger, Thule, Smith Optics, Skratch Labs, Big Mountain Enduro. Yeti / FOX Factory Team will kick off the season at the first stop of the EWS circuit in Manizale, Colombia March 28 & 29, 2020. About Yeti Founded in 1985, Yeti Cycles makes race-bred, obsessively engineered, masterfully crafted mountain bikes proven by the fastest riders in the most demanding conditions. Based in Golden, Colorado, Yeti is owned and staffed by riders who are more likely to be out riding the company’s latest creation than sitting in a conference room. Visit www.yeticycles.com to learn more.
Richie Rude is back on the Yeti / FOX Factory team for another three years alongside fellow countryman Shawn Neer.( Photos: 1, Comments: 2 )
Campagnolo has added a 33mm depth to its line-up of carbon fibre Bora WTO wheels. The new wheelset is available in rim and disc brake versions, both tubeless-ready. The Bora WTO range was initially launched in 2018 with 60mm and 77mm wheels. The WTO 45 followed last year and is now completed by the WTO 33, which Campagnolo describes as “a truly multi-purpose wheel”. It’s pitched as an all-round wheelset designed to offer an aerodynamic advantage on flat roads or in a sprint, while significantly reducing weight when the road heads uphill. Will UAE Team Emirates be using tubeless tyres this season? UAE Team Emirates The Bora WTO 33 has been tested by the Campagnolo-sponsored UAE Team Emirates and, given that Campagnolo hasn’t announced a tubular version, suggests the WorldTour outfit will be using tubeless tyres at some point this season. “This profile is a further option when we have to adapt to the different kinds of terrain we tackle over a season,” says UAE Team Emirates rider Marco Marcato. The Bora WTO 33s weigh a claimed 1,395g for the rim brake wheelset and 1,485g for the disc brake wheelset. Campagnolo hasn’t offered any numbers for comparative aerodynamic testing between wheels in the range, but says the WTO 33 offers an advantage of 7.5 watts at 45 km/h “compared to a wheel that is not wind tunnel optimised”. The streamlined aluminium hubs are said to improve aerodynamic performance and run on ceramic bearings. Campagnolo That’s a significant number but it shouldn’t be altogether surprising that an aerodynamically profiled wheel is faster than an (unspecified) non-aero wheel. The Bora WTO 33 wheels have the same aluminium hubs and USB ceramic bearings as the rest of the range. The streamlined hubs are slim in the centre and curve upwards to taller flanges; a shape said to improve aerodynamic performance. Campagnolo’s distinctive G3 spoke pattern sees the spokes laced in groups of three on the rear wheel. The wheels are compatible with clincher and tubeless tyres. The 19mm rim width is designed for use with the 25mm tyres common in the pro peloton, though Campagnolo also says it’s suitable for 23mm and 28mm rubber. Both the rim brake and disc brake wheelsets are priced at €2,160. Campagnolo WTO 33 rim brake wheelset Weight: 1,395gRim depth: 33mmInternal rim width: 19mmTyre compatibility: Clincher, tubelessSpokes: Steel, 18 front, 21 rearNipples: Aluminium, self-lockingWeight limit: 120kg (rider and bike)Price: €2,160 Campagnolo WTO 33 disc brake wheelset Weight: 1,485gRim depth: 33mmInternal rim width: 19mmTyre compatibility: Clincher, tubelessSpokes: Steel, 24 front and rearNipples: Aluminium, self-lockingWeight limit: 120kg (rider and bike)Price: €2,160
Known as “Denim Destroyer” for his knack fo competing in jeans, South Tyrolean Johannes von Klebelsberg will race the 2020 season with the GT Factory Racing Team. Here is our interview from a few months ago. [Press Release] – GT Bicycles, and GT Factory Racing (GTFR) today announced exciting changes the 2020 team roster. New riders Johannes von Klebelsberg (IT) and Ethan Craik (UK) will join seasoned vets Wyn Masters, Martin Maes, and # 2 ranked Noga Korem. “I’m stoked to have Johannes and Ethan join the crew for some fast racing and good times,” said Maurissen, GTFR Team Manager. “When you add Martin, Noga and Wyn into the mix, you know we’re in for another spectacular season. Fans can expect some more crossover between EWS and DH too. We’ll see you soon at the races! “ No stranger to the UCI Downhill World Cup series, Johannes raced for MS Mondraker during the 2018 season, then as a privateer in 2019. Working in his family’s restaurant in Munich, Germany funded Johannes’s race season. He even raced with a phone in his pocket in case of a work emergency. Johannes is excited to shed his privateer status because, “Being part of GTFR means that I’ll have bigger opportunities and more time to work on technical aspects of the sport.” He added, “I will have more free time at race weekends next season, and I will use that time to work on skills that could make me a faster racer.” Aside from being one of the fastest privateers on the circuit, Johannes quickly became a fan favorite last season for his unconventional use of denim jeans as racing pants, earning him the nickname “Denim Destroyer.” Johannes has no plans of hanging up the jeans any time soon, “I’ll keep my denims, and Alpinestars can help me finally get some good-looking ones!”