The long wait has an end. After the announcement of the RockShox AXS-Reverb the Reverb Stealth gets his longed-for update. With 200 mm of travel, Vent Valve Technology and new inner workings the wait seems to worth it. Here you’ll read everything you need to know, directly from RockShox: XX Wir haben die RockShox Reverb Familie auf ein neues Level gebracht, kürzlich mit Reverb AXS und jetzt mit der neuen Reverb Stealth. Das neu entwickelte Innenleben sorgt für ein deutlich leichteres Betätigen und größere Zuverlässigkeit. Die neue Vent Valve Technologie erleichtert den kleinen Service. Mit reduzierten Gesamtlängen für alle Hub-Optionen profitieren Fahrer aller Art und Größen von einem erweiterten Verstellbereich. Die neue Reverb Stealth hat die Bedeutung der Dropper-Post neu definiert. Features Minimale Länge für maximalen Drop. Die neue, kürzere Gesamtlänge der Teleskopstütze ermöglicht mehr Verstellbereich in vielen Bikes. Was schnell nach oben geht, geht jetzt auch noch schneller nach unten. Überarbeitetes Innenleben reduziert die benötigte Drop Force um über 50%. Neues Schmiermittel, neuer Trennkolben (IFP) und das neue Maxima Reverb Fluid reduzieren die Reibung und führen zu einem schnelleren Rückstellen unter allen Bedingungen. Die neue Vent Valve-Technologie, eine einfache und zuverlässige integrierte Servicelösung ohne Ausbau der Sattelstütze. Mach es ordentlich. Interne Stealth-Leitungsführung für ein sauberes Finish. Individuelle Geschwindigkeitseinstellung zur Feinabstimmung der Rückstellgeschwindigkeit. Erweiterung des Serviceintervalls auf 600 Stunden Betriebszeit. Details Durchmesser 30.9mm, 31.6mm, 34.9mm Verstellbereich 100mm, 125mm, 150mm, 175mm, 200mm Längen 301mm, 351mm, 414mm, 467mm, 519.5mm Remote 1x, Standard (L-unterhalb, R-oberhalb) Preis Standard Remote $349 / €390 / £345 Preis 1x Remote $399 / €445 / £395 Wenn es auf die Größe ankommt Den Sattel so weit wie möglich aus dem Weg zu bringen, bedeutet mehr Selbstvertrauen und Kontrolle auf dem Trail. Durch die kürzere Gesamtlänge und fünf Hub-Optionen der neuen Reverb Stealth, kann man nun das Maximum an Sattelfreiheit aus jedem Bike rausholen. Innere Angelegenheiten Die neue Reverb Stealth wurde um einen schwimmenden Trennkolben (IFP) gebaut, der Reibung reduziert, schneller auslöst und zum Versenken weniger Druck auf den Sattel erfordert. Durch eine neu erdachte Schmierung verringern wir den internen Widerstand nochmals und sorgen für eine seidenweiche, zuverlässigere Funktion der Stütze. Du wirst merken, dass du die Stütze öfter, viel leichter und in allen Bedingungen nutzen wirst. Immer und immer wieder. Vent Valve Technologie In den Genuss dieser Erfindung sollst du nicht kommen müssen, weshalb wir die robusteste Teleskopstütze gebaut haben. Manchmal aber passiert das Unvermeidbare: Mit der Zeit gelangt etwas Luft ins Öl, die Stütze wird schwammig und braucht einen Service. Dank Vent Valve kannst du diesen kleinen Service nun mit einem Knopf selbst erledigen. Du drückst das Ventil, komprimierst die Stütze kopfüber und stellst sie zurück. So wird die Luft in die Luftkammer gedrückt und nur das Öl bleibt, wo es soll – deine Stütze ist wieder wie neu. Mehr Informationen findet ihr unter sram.com
We went to Virginia’s Blue Ridge to see how it’s become a heaven on earth for mountain bikers The 100ft neon star at the top of Mill Mountain in Roanoke, a city on the East Coast of the United States, is comfortably the most distinctive man-made landmark in the Blue Ridge Mountains. After all, it’s a 100ft neon star and it’s on top of a mountain. Come on now. It also happens to be surrounded by a plethora of mountain bike trails, and there’s something quite comforting about that, isn’t there? If the number one attraction on TripAdvisor is also a hotspot for mountain biking then you can safely presume that the place is probably a ‘mountain biking town’ by definition, and that you’re going to meet a lot of ‘mountain people’ while you’re there; the type that don’t mind if you’re covered in mud and won’t ask if you’ve ever competed in the Tour de France when they hear you’re there to ride a bicycle. “The Roanoke Star has at least 94ft on the Bollywood legend” The Roanoke Star is the largest freestanding star this side of the stratosphere. A quick Google search for the ‘biggest star in the world’ suggests that Indian film star Shah Rukh Khan is actually the biggest star in the world of course, but we doubled checked the maths on and Kahn is only 5ft 8”, so the Roanoke Star has at least 94ft on the Bollywood legend. The star was originally installed on the 1738ft Mill Mountain in 1949 as a Christmas decoration, but like a student household who leave their fake Christmas tree up so long that eventually, there’s not much point taking it down at all, the locals in Roanoke liked the star so much that they decided to make it a permanent feature, and it’s now an icon of Virginia’s Blue Ridge. Rigged up with 2000ft of neon tubing, the star lights up each night, and on the way up to the star, and particularly on the way back down, there’s a lot of fun to be had. Photo: Stuart Kenny We spend the best part of an hour or so weaving and winding our way up to the top of Mill Mountain. You can see the star from almost any street in Roanoke, so we’d been a little wary of the climb – the star being so high up and lurking over us in the days and nights previous – but it wasn’t as punishing as we feared. The sidewinding trail was merciful and offered enough variety and trail features that the climb was actually, dare we say it, pretty enjoyable. Looking out from the star back out over Roanoke, you get a fantastic sense for how green the whole region is. It’s really, really green. Extremely green. There’s a bit of city in the middle where you can see downtown Roanoke, and the neighbouring city of Salem (not that Salem), and then everywhere else is just… green. Green as a vegan cafe. Which is good, isn’t it? That’s what you want from a trail town. Bit of city. Lots of hills. Best of both worlds. Pictured: Downtown Roanoke. Photo: Creative Dog Media When you’re actually downtown in Roanoke it can feel like any other small city. It’s got the coffee shops, some great brewers, art galleries and an intensely chaotic pinball museum, but not every city can boast views of the Blue Ridge Mountains and access to the world famous Appalachian Trail (which strictly, sadly, doesn’t allow mountain biking). Still, there are no lack of options when it comes to getting your turns. “Within an hour of downtown Roanoke there’s over 200 miles of singletrack” There are 13 miles of trail on Mill Mountain alone, a 10 minute cycle from the city. We take a trail called ‘Monument’ back down to the bottom and whizz over bone-shaking rocks, root and dirt in a fifth of the time it took us to get up the trail. There’s plenty of room to connect trails and make the mountain more of a rolling ride though if you wanted to make a day of it. The good folks at the Roanoke Outdoor Adventures hub, where we rent our full-sus bike, tell us they often head up Mill Mountain to ride over lunch or for a ride after work on weekdays. “It’s one of the few places where you can be downtown, then get on a bike and be on mountain biking singletrack in 10 minutes,” says Richard Blackwood, my guide to the trails in Roanoke. Richard is Ride Coordinator of the local Blue Ridge Off-Road Cyclists (BROC) group, dedicated to preserving and enhancing the trails in the area. Pictured: Starr Hill Brewery. Photo: Visit Virginias Blue Ridge The Mill Mountain trails are just the start of the riding in Roanoke, a city whose newly-received status as an International Mountain Bicycling Association (IMBA) silver-level ride centre is quickly establishing it as the mountain biking capital of the East Coast. “Within an hour of downtown Roanoke there’s over 200 miles of singletrack,” says Richard. “And that’s not counting fire roads or double track. That’s just pure singletrack.” “That’s what you want from a trail town. Bit of city. Lots of hills. Best of both worlds” All-included, there’s a whopping 320 miles of trail within an hour of downtown Roanoke. With that in mind, it’s almost remarkable it’s not become a mountain biking mecca before now. The trails aren’t particularly new, either. Most of them were built within the last 15-20 years. The difference recently though, and something that sets Roanoke apart from a lot of places with great mountain biking potential, is that the city is doing all it can to help mountain biking grow in Roanoke. Bureaucracy doesn’t get in the way here. Photo: Stuart Kenny “It started off as just a few trails,” says Richard. “There was a trail called Four Gorges built by four brothers. It had been ridden a lot but it was unofficial. The city knew they could fight it and just constantly have people putting the trail back in, or just say ‘okay let’s make it a trail’. “That was one of the first ones out and then it expanded from there into the lowers. Once they realised there were people who were willing to come on out and work on the trails, and that they weren’t having to dump a bunch of money into it, they really gave their blessing.” We rode the ‘lowers’, a section of the nearby mountain biking paradise of Carvins Cove, the previous day, taking us through enchanted forests, up winding climbs quickly rewarded with technical downhills and past wild deer and turkeys and below hawks. We hear stories of the black bears that often roam the trails though sadly, or perhaps luckily, none pop up. Carvins Cove Natural Reserve is the second largest municipal park in the country, covering 11,363 acres. It includes McAfee Knob, one of the most commonly photographed spots on the Appalachian Trail, and more importantly, boasts 45 miles of mountain bike singletrail. Photo: Stuart Kenny The area can be divided into the upper, steep climbs rewarded by stunning panoramas of the surrounding mountains and reservoir, and the lowers, which offer up an enormous variation of rolling forest mountain bike trails expertly maintained and always expanding. “There’s a really strong volunteer organisation and its stepped up since the city stepped up and started backing the riders and giving permissions to expand the trails,” Richard says. “It’s made a huge difference in people’s willingness to help out and do more instead of just going out to ride occasionally. We have a couple of different crews now, and they’re all volunteers. They build trail because they love doing it and they get enough out of it that they want to give back and help build Roanoke into an even bigger mountain bike destination.” One of the things that strikes us when we ride is how well the builders have made use of the forest; with what must have been meticulous planning in order to map out trail routes which offer variety in both feel and views, without ever feeling like they’re imposing on the forest or taking away from its beauty and wild feel. As a mountain biker, these are the sorts of trails you like to dream are in every forest you drive past on a daily basis, but rarely actually find. Pictured: Carvins Cove. Photo: Sam Dean Photography It was in May 2018 that Roanoke were recognised by IMBA for their efforts. IMBA say their Ride Centres denote the “pinnacle of mountain bike communities”, and there are currently only 39 in the world. Roanoke is the first spot on the East Coast to be awarded silver status. “It’s very recent but we’re already seeing an influx of people coming in and riding from different areas,” says Richard. “Roanoke might just be on the brink of becoming one of the most visited mountain biking destinations in the United States” “I think that’s really going to ramp up as the weather gets better through spring and summer.” There are plans to develop certain areas of Roanoke, including the camping and luxury camping options in the city; in anticipation of the expected influx. The trails are always developing too – we pass three new builds underway in Carvins Cove on our route. The half-finished ‘Rock and Roll’ route makes a fantastic out-and-back, flowing both ways, with beautifully sculpted stone bridges and river crossings, and the trail will make for a tantalising prospect when it’s done. It seems the trail network is always growing more, alongside the other essentials that Roanoke already has covered. Photo: Stuart Kenny The 10-stool Texas Tavern dates back to the 1930s and will whip you up something cheap and greasy if you want to put those calories back on after your ride, and the craft beer scene is flourishing – check out Starr Hill on Tuesday for a pub quiz or Deschutes on Wednesday to drink a huge variety of beer to a soundtrack of traditional string band Americana music. We’re told on more than one occasion that most people who grew up in Roanoke used to get out as soon as they could, and only came back when it was time to raise a family or to retire – but that’s changing now. The mountain biking community has given the city a new focal point; and a new pull for the youth to stay. There’s award-winning bike shops – check out Just The Right Gear – a diverse and developing trail network, and it all offers such variation. Roanoke might just be on the brink of becoming one of the most visited mountain biking destinations in the United States, and they’ve got there in the best possible way – through the hard work of a community that just loves digging trails, and loves riding bikes. Do It Yourself We flew from Heathrow to Washington (Dulles) on British Airways, then got the Amtrak (train) from Washington D.C to Roanoke in Virginia’s Blue Ridge. We rented bikes from Roanoke Mountain Adventures, rode at Carvins Cove Natural Reserve and on Mill Mountain Park, ate at the Texas Tavern, Tuco’s Taqueria Garaje and Fortunato and drunk at Starr Hill brewery. For more information on travel to Virginia and the wider Capital Region visit: www.capitalregionusa.co.uk You May Also Like Mountain Biking In Saint Martin | How One Small Caribbean Island Is Bouncing Back From The Devastation Caused By Hurricane Irma The First Time I Went… | Mountain Biking The post Stars and Bikes | Riding the New Capital for Mountain Biking on America’s East Coast appeared first on Mpora.
You’ve spent months in the off-season training hard. Your legs and body are feeling good. Those months of effort — hours spent on wet road rides and endless turbo sessions — has been time and investment spent to get ready so you can perform your best in race season. But how many of us have spent as much time preparing our heads? Are our brains ready for racing? Just 30 minutes to learn these three mental skills will help us do full justice to our training Some of us have a habit of leaving mental preparation off our to do list, opting instead for winging it and hoping for a big dose of good luck. Unfortunately, using this as a strategy leaves an awful lot to chance and risks wasting all the physical efforts we have made. Instead, taking just 30 minutes to learn these three mental skills will help us do full justice to our training and boost our performance this season. 7 essential road cycling skills Get your nutrition right with our guide to pre-ride, during and post-ride fuelling The ultimate sportive nutrition guide 1. Chunking Chunk up the task or race into smaller sections, and get an endorphin hit each time you reach one of your goals Phil Hall / Immediate Media Co Nope, it’s not a typo. I’m not talking about chucking (either your bike off the side of a mountain in frustration or throwing up with the efforts) but rather chunking. Specifically, ‘chunking’ down your races into much smaller manageable pieces so they feel less intimidating and not so pressured. We need to check in with our bodies and to do so regularly Each time we tick off another section we get a shot of dopamine (a brain chemical linked to reward) giving us lots of mini-surges of pleasure. The more we achieve, the more often we get our shot, so we feel good and this in turn boosts our confidence. How to chunk A few days before your race look at the course and find some natural sections. Lapped courses obviously work well but if it’s one long loop or a point to point you can break down the route into specific distances or use natural landmarks to split it up. For each chunk develop a goal to focus on. It could be about the course, your effort level or your technique. Write these goals down, read through regularly and stick them on your bike frame if you can. 2. Checking your body Check in with yourself to help keep your focus, and ensure your monitoring your performance and energy levels In some endurance sports, mentally checking out of the race to distract yourself from the discomfort and pressure is a valuable strategy. But when you are on the bike, distraction like this could see you flying into a bush, or worse. So instead of checking out, we need to check in with our bodies and to do so regularly. It keeps our technique strong and our focus maintained, however tired we get. If we regularly monitor our body and adjust our pace, strategy or movement we can better master our environment, respond quicker to competitors and improve our technique. It helps us become hyper aware of our bodily actions and functions; heart rate, muscle tension, breathing patterns and so on, and it ensures we keep on top of all of these to pace well and push when we can. It doesn’t just help us perform better; studies have found that athletes using this technique find more pleasure in their sport. How to check Pick regular points in the race where you will focus on your body and your position, effort level and technique. Start with your feet and work up through the body, considering each key body part to ensure it is where it should be and is working as efficiently as possible. If it isn’t then shift your position. Regularly doing this in training makes it easier to do under the pressure of competition. 3. Change the chat We all have internal head chatter: the thousands and thousands of thoughts which run through our heads all day, every day. These thoughts have a powerful influence on how we behave, our levels of motivation and the confidence we exude (or lose). We can’t force our chatter into being relentlessly positive but we can work to make it helpful When the chatter is negative it can turn even an okay race into a disaster – self-sabotaging our efforts and annihilating our confidence. We can’t force our chatter into being relentlessly positive but we can work to make it helpful. Researchers have found helpful self-talk can increase the time it takes us to reach exhaustion, improve our attention, confidence and control and helps us see races as challenges rather than threats. These all improve our performance on the bike. Positive self talk can really boost your confidence and your performance, so start incorporating it into your training now Heidi Blundun To make our head chatter more helpful we can visualise it coming from a coach giving us instructions while we race, helping us to maintain great technique, use better tactics or keep us focused on trying to do well rather than unhelpfully concentrating on not screwing up. How to change the chat Think about the times in races when you struggle the most. Consider what you would do in these situations in an ideal mental state. Turn these strategies into short instructions; consider instructions around concentration, problem solving, accuracy, body position or tactics. The instruction needs to be positive (something to do rather than something to avoid) Boil the instruction down into a short sentence that you can remember and repeat rhythmically. Performing under the pressure of a race is not supposed to be easy but it can be far more manageable if we use the ‘chunk, check and chat’ technique to help build focus and confidence. This will in turn boost our performance.
Orbea has completely redesigned its Occam trail bike, boosting travel, geometry figures and updating the suspension’s kinematics to better suit trail riders. Its MyO program also allows customers to have a completely unique paintjob for no extra cost, while componentry can also be swapped out to suit individual tastes. Take full advantage of the program and you can rest assured that you’ll have a completely unique bike. The bike that almost made Tom sell his van Evil The Following MB review The previous generation Occam had two versions: a 650b Occam AM with 150mm of travel and an Occam TR, a 130mm 29er. With the introduction of the 29in Rallon enduro bike, with 160/150mm of travel, and the Oiz XC bike, which had a more trail orientated build available with 120mm of travel up front, Orbea decided to consolidate the Occam into a pure trail bike, with 140mm of travel and 29in wheels. The Occam is Orbea’s new 140mm 29er trail bike Jérémie Reuiller This follows what Orbea felt was the general trend in mountain biking over the past couple of years. Cross-country is getting gnarlier (hence the Oiz TR), and the Rallon was more successful than it imagined it would be. The Occam could, therefore, focus on what a trail bike really needs to be: capable up the climbs and very capable back down, too. Early developments of the new bike included the ‘R-Occam’, which took the Occam’s front triangle and bolted in the Rallon’s rear, with an angle-set to fine-tune the shape. This alloy mule let Orbea test various set-ups. Future developments included the use of its own 3D printers and testing facilities to help get the new bike dialled as quickly as possible. The offset link gives easy access to the shock and allows the use of a water bottle Jérémie Reuiller Orbea Occam frameset details It’s 2019, so you shouldn’t be surprised that the new Occam has a relatively long, low and slack frame. The key figures for a size Large with 140mm forks are listed below. Speccing a 150mm bike slackens the bike’s head and seat tube angles by around 0.5 degrees and lifts the bottom bracket a touch. Reach: 474mm (S –425mm, M – 450mm, XL – 500mm) Seat tube: 457mm (S – 381mm, M – 419mm, XL – 508mm) Head angle: 66 degrees Seat angle: 77 degrees Stack: 627mm Wheelbase: 1,224mm Chainstay length: 440mm Head tube: 120mm Bottom bracket height: 336mm The changes give frames that are almost one size longer in reach, yet with a seat tube roughly one size smaller for a given frame. This is definitely in line with where the market is heading: longer bikes are better suited to more aggressive riders and shorter seat tubes allow for longer dropper posts — and rarely have much significant downside. Furthermore, Orbea says that the steeper seat tubes have been put in place to help with more technical climbing. Race Face provided the majority of the cockpit on the Occam M10 we rode Jérémie Reuiller As you’ll notice, Orbea has opted for an asymmetric frame design with a spar joining seat and down tubes. This is to ensure frame stiffness was where Orbea wanted it to be. It claims it’s not too stiff, nor too bendy, and that it benchmarked it against other competitor bikes. Without the asymmetric link, the seat tube would have had to have been more curved towards the centre of the frame to get the necessary support for the rocker’s main link. This would then have an impact on the effective seat tube angle, especially for taller riders. Adding the link meant it was able to maintain the geometry it was hoping for, while also adding a bit of stiffness, and only 100g to the overall weight. Having the link joining the down and seat tubes together (rather than top and seat tube) means easier access to the shock’s controls too, apparently. In order to fit a bottle, the cage bosses are offset by 10mm to the left. The rocker link itself has received a fair amount of engineering. The two sides are joined like a splined crank. Orbea will be offering both carbon and alloy options of the bike. The carbon version has a monocoque front triangle, along with one-piece seatstays and two-piece chainstays. By minimising the number of joints in the frame, Orbea claims to reduce the resin content and therefore weight, and improve the efficiency of its construction. The medium carbon frame has a claimed weight of 2.3kg (without a shock, but painted). Orbea is also offering a lifetime warranty on the frame, with no riding quibbles. Orbea has specced bikes with a 150mm 36 up front, an ‘upgrade’ over the stock 140mm 34. Customers can make the change on Orbea’s online shop Jérémie Reuiller The hydroformed alloy frame has a highly polished finish. This not only looks better but also reduces the number of stress-risers, so performs better in fatigue testing, according to Orbea. Finishing off the frame package is a rubberised chainstay protector, with waves along its length to reduce chain noise. There is also a threaded bottom bracket, Enduro Max bearings and internal cable routing designed to minimise noise and wear. Orbea Occam suspension We tested the Occam on some pretty rowdy trails near Ainsa, Spain Jérémie Reuiller The 140mm of suspension is built around what Orbea calls its Concentric Boost platform. This is a four-bar system with the rearmost pivot placed around the rear axle. What’s neat is that the rear wheel’s axle effectively holds the rear triangle together. Remove it and the seat and chainstays can part, giving easy access to bearing swaps, as well as tool-free rear hanger replacement (the rear hanger has a finger-operated lock-ring, and keeps the seat and chainstays together when the axle is removed). Looking at its range as a whole, Orbea decided that the Occam now has a narrower customer profile and this has allowed it to give a more ‘specialised’ suspension feel. A Rekon is fitted to the rear for fast rolling in dryer conditions Jérémie Reuiller The suspension is now much more progressive through its stroke to give the supple early, supportive mid and ‘safe’ end of stroke that’s so often asked for in a trail bike. With higher leverage ratios on the shock through the linkage, the Occam runs on lower shock pressures, which Orbea says reduces friction and therefore improves feel. The Fox DPX2 and DPS shocks come with a 0.2cc volume spacer fitted as standard, but the bike arrives with a 0.4cc spacer for more aggressive riders, and Orbea says the bike will also perform nicely without any spacers if you’re into the more ‘XC’ aspect of trail riding. Finally, Orbea has increased the anti-squat figures on this single-ring only bike to give a more stable pedalling platform and reduced the anti-rise figures, meaning the bike remains more active under braking — which is helped by placing the brake caliper on the seatstays. Orbea MyO program Orbea’s MyO program gives a multitude of customisation options for higher level models in its lineup. Orbea has long offered the opportunity to alter the spec on your bike; for example, the bikes we rode had a 150mm Fox 36 plugged in up front, rather than the stock 140mm 34 fork. It’s also possible to change things such as stem length and bar width, alter the tyre choice, brakes and shock too. These have an at-cost upcharge and the bikes are effectively built to order at Orbea’s own facilities. Orbea has specced the Shimano i-Spec dropper lever to actuate its own branded dropper post Jérémie Reuiller The more ‘exciting’ aspect of MyO is the ability to change the colour of the frame, with no additional cost. On its site, there’s a ‘builder’ function that gives you various colour options for a range of the frame’s design. These include the main frame colour, the secondary frame colour, the Orbea logo and Occam logo, and a couple of other small touches. On top of this, you can also have your name (or any other phrase) put on the seatstays. While the Occam page wasn’t live while we wrote this, we did some quick maths with the Rallon’s MyO builder and reckon on colours alone there are just over 34 million options. Orbea Occam 2020 model specs and pricing Orbea is offering eight models of the Occam: four carbon, four alloy, all eligible for the MyO program. A Shimano 12 speed shifter — the first we had a chance to ride Jérémie Reuiller Orbea Occam M-LTD £6,599 / €7,599 / $7,999 This top-end model comes with the carbon frame, Fox Factory 150mm 36 fork and DPX2 shock, a Shimano XTR groupset with RaceFace Next R chainset and XTR brakes. DT Swiss’ XMC 1200 Spline carbon wheels are shod in 2.5in Maxxis High Roller II tyres. Orbea Occam M10 £4,399 / €4,999 / $5,499 This bike comes with a 140mm Fox 34 and DPX2 shock, both Factory level. There’s a Shimano XT groupset and brakes, with a RaceFace finishing kit. The wheels are a set of DT Swiss XM 1650, which are custom made for Orbea — effectively the rim from the XM 1501 wheelset with a slightly cheaper hub. DT Swiss made some wheels especially for Orbea — the XM 1650 Jérémie Reuiller Orbea Occam M30-Eagle £3,299 / €3,799 / $3,999 Factory is replaced by Performance level suspension on this version, and it’s a DPS shock rather than DPX2, while there’s a SRAM NX Eagle groupset combined with Shimano BR520 brakes. DT Swiss M1900 Spline wheels support the same High Roller II tyres as above. Orbea Occam M30 £3,299 / €3,799 / $3,999 The build of this model is nigh-on identical to the M30-Eagle, but you get a Shimano XT/SLX drivetrain instead. Orbea Occam H10 £2,899 / €3,299 / $3,499 The H10 is the top-level alloy Occam for 2020. It comes with Performance level Fox 34 and DPS suspension, DT Swiss M1900 Spline wheels and High Roller II tyres, and an XT/SLX mix 12-speed drivetrain. Shimano’s 12-speed shifting was impressive Jérémie Reuiller Orbea Occam H20 £2,499 / €2,799 / $2,999 Price savings largely come from the finishing kit and Mach1 Maxx 25c wheels here because you still get a 12-speed Shimano SLX drivetrain. Orbea Occam H20-Eagle £2,499 / €2,799 / $2,999 As you’d expect, this is the same spec as the H20 above, but with a SRAM NX Eagle drivetrain rather than the Shimano kit. Orbea Occam H30 £1,999 / €2,299 / $ N/A The entry-level Occam hits the £2,000 marker but isn’t available in the US. Marzocchi’s Bomber Z2 keeps the price down, as does the shift to a SunRace 11-51t 12-speed cassette, joining Shimano SLX shifting gear. You also get a lower specced Shimano brake, but many of the components are the same as much higher-level bikes — this looks like great value for money.
It’s June and most definitely summer time here in the UK (and the rest of the northern hemisphere). We’re still reeling from the second round of the downhill World Cup last weekend in Fort William, where Rachel Atherton triumphed in the women’s race in challenging conditions and Amaury Pierron came jaw-droppingly close to a horrific crash on the final jump but managed to hold on to take the men’s win. Here, at BikeRadar, we’ve released the first episode of our mountain bike tech podcast, delving into the much talked about but little understood topic of fork offset. Jack shared the ups and downs of his experience riding the Roll Massif Wild Horse Gravel event in Colorado. Tom’s been to Sea Otter Europe to sniff out loads of new bikes and kit, including this retro-inspired Cannondale F-Si. As if that weren’t enough to get you excited about riding bikes, we’ve gathered together eleven of the most interesting bikes and products to arrive in the office this week. Please enjoy. Wilier Superleggera The Superleggera is an old-school beauty with a modern twist Seb Stott The Superleggera is a celebration of Wilier’s heritage, combining a classic Italian aesthetic with modern technology. Wilier describes the Superleggera as “a tribute to a product that has made Wilier famous… A product that nods to the past, but in completely new and renovated fine finishes.” The Columbus steel frameset is handmade in Italy. It’s got a threaded steerer for the authentic old-school look, but a threaded bottom bracket for modern compatibility. The frame is claimed to weigh 590g ± 5 percent and the fork 690g ± 5 percent. Our complete bike, in size 58cm as shown, weighs 8.92kg. The retro steel tubing and copper finish doesn’t look out of place against modern Campagnolo parts Seb Stott €2,400 (frameset only) Find out more from Wilier NS Define 150 1 We’re excited to ride this carbon-framed 29er from NS bikes. Seb Stott Polish-based brand, NS bikes, is gaining a reputation for its good-value mountain bikes. The Define is a carbon-framed 29er trail bike, available in two guises with 130mm or 150mm rear wheel travel respectively. We have the latter, and it’s the top-spec version too. That means you get Fox Factory level suspension, albeit with the FIT4 fork damper rather than our prefered GRIP2 unit, and matching seatpost. The most interesting feature of the Define is the reach-adjustable headset, which allows the reach to be set to two positions, 10mm apart. There are only two sizes in the range, where the Medium has a reach of 450mm or 460mm, while the Large has 480mm or 490mm. Our bike in size large weighs 13.9kg without pedals. £5,495 / €6399 Buy now from MTB Monster Bryton Aero 60 The Bryton Aero 60 GPS is designed to be aerodynamic and affordable. Seb Stott This relatively affordable GPS bike computer includes a speed and cadence sensor as well as heart rate belt and features a 2.3in display, which can show up to 10 data fields simultaneously. Like most GPS units these days, it uses Russian GLONASS satellites for positioning as well as GPS, and communicates with sensors using Bluetooth and ANT+. It’s designed to be aerodynamic with its included mount, and is claimed to deliver up to (key phrase) 32 hours of battery life. Those are impressive stats for a computer costing less than £200. £170 / €222 Buy now from Wiggle Mavic Deemax Pro Sam Hill Edition Mavic’s iconic Deemax Pro wheelset is now available with a paintjob inspired by the even more iconic Sam Hill. Seb Stott Mavic updated the iconic Deemax wheelset last year. The Deemax Pro is the enduro version (as opposed to the Deemax DH). It features a 28mm internal rim width (slightly narrower than the now standard 30mm) which is apparently done to save weight and allow the tyre to deform more in turns, thereby helping the bike to corner tighter. Like Mavic’s older wheels, they use alloy spokes (not steel like most wheels), with spoke nipples which thread into the rim as well as onto the spoke. This allows Mavic to use an intact rim bed with no spoke holes, so the rim is sealed for tubeless use without need for fiddly, leaky rim tape. This limited edition Sam Hill version gets rim graphics inspired by the man himself, but otherwise they’re identical to the regular wheelset including the recommended retail price. The Sam Hill edition wheelset sports rim graphics which match the reigning EWS champ’s tattoos. Seb Stott Our 29in set weighs 1,946g for the pair. £899 / €999 /$900 Buy now from Chain Reaction Cycles Hunt SuperDura Dynamo Disc front wheel Wide-tyre compatible and able to power lights as you ride, these wheels should be ideal for long-distance adventures. Felix Smith As you read this, our Hunt SuperDura Dynamo Disc front wheel is currently being used by BikeRadar videographer, Felix Smith, on The Transatlantic Way — a 2,500km unsupported ride along Ireland’s wild west coast. The wheel is built around a Son Delux dynamo hub, which Son claims is one of the most efficient dynamo hubs available. Since the dynamo generates its own electricity, lights can be run free of heavy batteries requiring charge. The wheel combines Hunt’s trademark wide rim, at 25mm. Its durability and relatively low weight mean this wheel is perfect for those wanting to gain as much grip and comfort from their tyre as possible — particularly advantageous for ultra endurance distances. BikeRadar videographer Felix will be riding this Dynamo-equipped Lauf Anywhere around Ireland when you read this. Felix Smith Check out our Lauf Anywhere review Hunt says the rims can be used with tyres ranging from 25mm all the way to 50mm. When combined with dynamo lighting, this wheel would also be ideal for winter training or everyday commuting with no need to charge batteries again. Felix has the bike set up with an Exposure Revo front light which Hunt offers discounts on when bought as a wheelset. £379 — Front only Find out more from Hunt Scott Sports women’s mountain bike kit A cosy mid- or outer-layer that provides warmth while wicking sweat Aoife Glass Combining mountain sports know-how and mountain biking expertise, Scott Sports produces a range of kit that varies from on-bike specific to general, multipurpose mountain-wear, which is where the kit we’ve got in sits. Scott’s women’s MTB range is extensive with multiple options for shorts, jerseys, jackets and more. That said, the Trail MTN Tech shorts are definitely ones for riders who prefer their shorts short and aren’t particularly bothered by wearing knee-pads or having a gap between the ends of the shorts and the top of the pads. These fit more into the multi-purpose category, and would also work well for the gravel riders out there… but we know that UK-based mountain bikers generally prefer something a bit longer in the leg. The shorts are – well – pretty short actually Aoife Glass In the plus column, they’re lightweight with a popper and zip fly and adjustable waist band, plus laser-cut ventilation holes. The Trail Flow shirt looks to be a very handy piece of kit. A lightweight, loose-cut technical riding T-shirt, it has a scoop neckline and a drirelease knit back panel designed to help wick moisture away from the skin. Casual looks make it a top that’s work well for on the bike, in the cafe, in the pub, in the gym or just every-day wear. If you like your riding tops to feel more like performance T-shirts, this one from Scott foots the bill Aoife Glass If you’re looking for a little warmth on cooler mornings or at altitude, but don’t need protection from the wet, then the Trail MTB 90 jacket is for you. Another multifunctional garment, it’ll also work for hiking, walking and just hanging out. Made of a ribbed, quick-dry fabric, it’s designed to provide warmth without adding lots of weight. All of the kit mentioned above comes available in sizes XS to XL and in a range of colour options so you can go as loud as you like, or not. Scott Trail MTN Tech Women’s Shorts: £62.99 — Buy now from Tredz Scott Trail Flow Dri S/S Women’s Shirt: £39.99 — Buy now from Tredz Scott Trail MTN 90 Women’s Jacket: £80.99 — Buy now from Alpine Trek Schmolke Dauerläufer wheelset At a mere €1,380, this is Schmolke’s idea of an affordable wheelset Seb Stott If you’re into über lightweight road components you’ve probably heard of Schmolke. Our snake-hipped racer, Joe Norledge, used the German manufacturer’s TLO (The Lightest One) seatpost and tubular wheelset to create his dream (5.1Kg) hill climb bike. And you can find out more about its products here. While the TLO tubular wheelset Joe used weighs just 940g for the pair, these are more of an all-round wheelset. Dauerläufer means endurance runner in German, nodding to the all-round versatility of these wheels. Unlike the TLO, these are clinchers, not tubular, so should be much easier to live with as well as being considerably less expensive. On the BikeRadar scales of truth, they weigh 1,358g for the pair without rim tape. The rims measure 26mm wide, and 45mm deep. The wheels have a total weight limit (bike and rider) of 110kg, and are covered by a two-year warranty plus a crash replacement scheme which extends beyond two years. We’ll let you know how they ride soon. €1380 Find out more from Schmolke “Feed Zone Table” recipe book Loads of healthy, nutritious and (presumably) delicious recipes in here. Seb Stott This is a recipe book for sociable cyclists. It serves up over 100 sweet, savoury, vegetarian, meat and fish-based meal ideas. There’s an emphasis on health and nutrition, but also on the well-being benefits of eating good food together. Its authors, Dr. Allen Lim, an exercise physiologist and co-founder of Skratch Labs, and Biju Thomas, a professional chef who’s cooked for pro cycling teams, aim to simplify the experience of cooking tasty, healthy meals for athletes and ordinary people alike. They say: “We are not interested in perpetuating the idea that there has to be a certain way that athletes eat for performance that is somehow different from how nonathletes eat for health and well-being.” £21.99 / $24.95 Buy now from Amazon Michelin E-Wild tyre Many products that are marketed as e-bike specific aren’t. This toothy tyre is one example. Seb Stott Just like SRAM’s Guide RE brakes, this could be a product that although designed for e-bikes works just as well on a regular mountain bike. It’s available in 650b only, but there are two width options: 2.6in and 2.8in. There are front and rear specific options too. The tread pattern is based on the very grippy Wild Enduro tyre, but the e-bike version gets a bigger volume carcass and a slightly different casing and compound. This 2.6in front tyre weighs a pretty reasonable 1,010g, and Michelin says the compound has been designed to minimise rolling resistance for the purpose of increasing an e-bike’s battery range, but of course that suggests they shouldn’t be too draggy for use without a motor. £45 / €50 / $50 Buy now from Tredz Galibier Surveillance sunglasses Apparently, these specs “evoke the stylish eye shades of the 1950s.” Let us know what you think in the comments. Seb Stott These cycling glasses claim to hark back to 1950’s style, but are packed with modern features. Small slits between the lens and the upper frame allow air to enter behind the lens, apparently reducing lens fog. They offer 100 percent protection from UV light as well as reducing the amount of blue light entering the eye. Apparently this results in “greater contrast between colors and a more pronounced brightness of objects.” They also block HEV (high energy visible) radiation from the sun, apparently to offer further protection to the eye. However, a quick search on Wikipedia revealed this nugget: “Despite a lack of concurring scientific evidence, HEV light has sometimes been claimed to be a cause of age-related macular degeneration… Some sunglasses and beauty creams specifically block HEV, for added marketing value.” Ouch. Still, they feel comfortable to wear and offer a wide field of vision. £42 / €47.88 / $55.86 Buy now from Galibier Nukeproof Horizon Enduro Flexi Flask Our workshop manager, Will, felt in no way uncomfortable while posing for this shot. (Not really.) Seb Stott Mountain bikers’ increasing aversion to rucksacks has led to more minimalist storage solutions such as hip packs and storage bibs. This in turn has led to a market for flexible water bottles which can be stuffed into pockets and take up less space when they’re less full. Nukeproof is far from first to the party here but its flexible bottle is a little cheaper than Camelbak’s. If you’re interested, this 500ml flask weighs 21g. £11.99 / €14.05 Buy now from Wiggle