Added a comment about photo Remote Lock-out for Brendog 6/10/2017 4:09 AM
C138_fw17_x2_0247

Sounds like offset bushing hardware in the shock as well. Ben and Brendan talk about it a bit here: https://www.redbull.com/int-en/mtb-world-cup-2017-leogang-timed-training-video

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Added reply in a thread ALL THINGS LEOGANG WORLD CUP 6/9/2017 12:04 PM

Maybe should have gone for the nac nac instead of the heal clicker?

Added reply in a thread Should There Be a 29er DH Class and 27.5 DH Class at World Cups? 6/9/2017 10:17 AM

Keep in mind that development of dedicated DH apparel rather than repurposed moto gear was just taking form 8-10 years ago. Riders/teams' apparel sponsors do not make or sell skin suits, they want their riders wearing what they sell and be able to build ... more »

Added reply in a thread Should There Be a 29er DH Class and 27.5 DH Class at World Cups? 6/8/2017 10:31 AM

GM's bike also has different geo than previous? That might make it more comfortable but the fact that 29ers look horrible on track. If the UCI banned skinsuits because of image to the sport, they should ban the 29er as well. If/when all teams go 29er, ... more »

Added reply in a thread Should There Be a 29er DH Class and 27.5 DH Class at World Cups? 6/8/2017 4:34 AM

Casey Brown (5'3) and Katie Winton (5'2) have opted for 29ers the past 2 years. This whole 29er-is-unfair-to-short-people is, at this point, just internet myth. It clearly doesn't seem to apply with long travel enduro/all-mtn bikes, and no one under ... more »

Added a comment about video Greg Minnaar is on Another Level - Fort William Winning Run 6/8/2017 3:36 AM
C138x104

Also yes because he was not the fastest in any split except the one with the boggy woods. He greased the (different) woods section last year as well and also won by over 3 seconds, in fact the total gap between between Greg's winning run both years and the 5th place finisher changed by just -.058 seconds. So essentially the entire podium the past two years fell on the same spread of about 4.7 seconds even with three 29ers.. Of course our eyes will see what we want them too, but it remains according to the clock he was only the fastest in the slowest, most awkward sector. Ft. William did nothing definitive to settle the 29er debate, which unfortunately means we'll have to listen to it being hashed out all over again this weekend in Leogang.

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Added reply in a thread Should There Be a 29er DH Class and 27.5 DH Class at World Cups? 6/6/2017 2:04 PM

Not interested in winning anything, just pointing out that the hyper focus on the 'fairness' of wheel diameter ignores the multitudes of ways that the current bikes would have to be considered 'unfair' as well using the same standard. It just doesn't ... more »

Added reply in a thread Should There Be a 29er DH Class and 27.5 DH Class at World Cups? 6/6/2017 12:09 PM

Can't believe I'm getting drawn into an internet hair-splitting debate but one last thought and I'm outta here: I think a good number of skeptics would be well served to tune into the EWS and look at the variance of bike setups. Sure, there aren't direct ... more »

Added reply in a thread Should There Be a 29er DH Class and 27.5 DH Class at World Cups? 6/6/2017 11:51 AM

would argue the fact that Greg gets more travel on his bike already tilts the argument towards "it probably does disadvantage shorter riders." I would argue there's a burden of proof in proving that the extra travel doesn't provide an advantage, or some ... more »

Added reply in a thread Should There Be a 29er DH Class and 27.5 DH Class at World Cups? 6/6/2017 5:27 AM

And just 1 on a 29er, on a track he's now won on 3 years running, and with almost identical time differentials within the top 5 on both 275 and 29. Perhaps this is all much ado about nothing? The only real takeaway from the weekend seems to be confirmation ... more »

Liked a comment on the item RESULTS: Rachel Atherton and Greg Minnaar Qualify Fastest at Fort William 6/3/2017 11:33 AM

so track-side news is lots of crashes. sam hill twice and apparently a bomb-hole that was filled in w/ rocks that caught riders out, sending them OTB. not too sure how much this impacted results but seems like possibly. still, those who didn't crash are on top and...more

Added a comment about news blog RESULTS: Rachel Atherton and Greg Minnaar Qualify Fastest at Fort William 6/3/2017 7:52 AM
C50_taipeimtb_43_1385556690

Some big names scattered all over the place. Got to wonder if with so many unprotected they dialed it back a touch, Minnaar included? Could make for some surprises on Sunday.

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Added a comment about slideshow Timed Training Head Games - Fort William World Cup MTB Downhill 6/3/2017 5:30 AM
C138_day2a

Greenland running a semi-slick in the rear! No risk no reward.

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Liked a comment on the item The Haves and the Have-Nots - Fort William World Cup DH Pre-Race Show 6/2/2017 1:11 PM

Great photos, but I laugh at the guys saying they should keep DH to it roots/no 29 wheels, we want to ride loose etc. The roots are 26" wheels, no suspension, flannels and jeans. What year do they want to go back to? 1992 where everyone had 80 mm...more

Added a comment about video Why Loic Bruni Won't Race his Prototype Specialized 29er at Fort William 6/2/2017 10:52 AM
C138x104

I give him credit for admitting he hasn't had proper testing and that he's not ready to race the bike, but the rest came off a bit sour really. His team goes to greater lengths than most to squeeze every ounce of speed and performance out of his Demo. Custum geo, cutting braces on swingarms, custom linkages, a dedicated telemetry bike, and for some reason exploring wheel diameter as a means of going faster just isn't cool enough? Going faster = less safe, but being/feeling sketchy = okay? Fine tuning suspension with a computer for more speed/traction, fine, but faster rolling (allegedly) wheels crosses the line. So the bike's not ready and his testing wasn't how he liked but in the meantime look at all the World Cup field who has not so subtly spent the winter riding their 29 trail bikes. This move didn't sneak up on anyone, and while the advantage, if there even is one, is yet to be determined Loic comes off as a bit under-prepared. At least the f*ck 29er bit seems to be playing well with the crowd. For now.

Balls was the Syndicate going all in at round 1 and committing where no one else would. Clearly the big teams were all testing 29ers this offseason to test the waters, or at the very least with an eye on World Champs. Logic's stance is the easy predictable one.

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Added a comment about video Why Loic Bruni Won't Race his Prototype Specialized 29er at Fort William 6/2/2017 8:24 AM
C138x104

All of the above is the same thing everyone worried about with 26 moving to 275. The difference being that this time around 29 has actually been used for several years now in tight, tech, slow, muddy conditions. It's a fairly known quantity, look no farther than Graves, Keene, Calaghan, Ratboy, Loose Dog, Kelly, Strobel. The EWS is far, far more related to DH racing than XC or trail riding and 29ers are everywhere.

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Added a comment about video Why Loic Bruni Won't Race his Prototype Specialized 29er at Fort William 6/2/2017 8:03 AM
C138x104

Is it not already? Did this change with the move to 275? How can we be certain it suddenly will with 29 then?

DH racing has regulations, that they are not the same as unrelated spots or different cycling disciplines isn't really cause for comparison. I can pick any number of regs in the sports you mentioned that are not present in DH that you wouldn't care for. Weight, tire tread, tire width, seat length, longevity of key components, etc. As I wrote above, if we are going to compare why not start at the most relevant: other forms of mountain bike racing. If we can't find a compelling argument for regulation there, what is the sense of cherry picking an isolated data point from an unrelated discipline? Especially if we aren't willing to adopt any of the other regulations or rational that comes with it.

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Added a comment about video Why Loic Bruni Won't Race his Prototype Specialized 29er at Fort William 6/2/2017 7:55 AM
C138x104

It's almost like we've learned no lesson from the whole 275 entering DH debates of 2013/14. It'll look shit, can't handle tight tracks, will ruin DH racing, not as much fun, I won't watch it anymore, there should be a UCI regulation, it's only a tiny bit faster so what's the point, real mountain bikes are 26. Seriously, search back a few years in various forums and you'll read word-for-word the same arguments used against 275 as we're hearing now about 29 and all of them are based almost entirely on an emotional reaction or personal aversion simply to the diameter of a wheel, nothing based on actual measurable empirical evidence.

There is (and was) lots of comparison to F1 and moto, but DH racing is not F1 or moto, and cherry picking a single data point out of a sea of regulation while ignoring the rest doesn't work. Yes F1 regulates wheel diameter. But they also regulate tire tread and dimensions, weight, longevity or critical components, physical shape of a car, power steering, gear boxes, fuel, etc etc etc. You can't make a convincing argument by choosing a single example that fits and discounting the rest. And that's most of what the anti 29 crowd is doing, and the vast majority of arguments against don't hold up under the slightest scrutiny:

The don't work for small people: see Danny Hart. They can't handle tech: see Luke Strobel, or any EWS race. The riding looks shit: See Danny Hart, Luke Strobel, The Syndicate, the recent Joe Smith cornering edit, Bryn Atkinson, the latest Sven Vs EWS recce vids, Ratboy, Loose Dog and the 50to1 crew, etc. They make it too easy by smoothing out the bumps or rolling faster: see telemetry, tire compound/pressure/tread, geometry adjustments, 200mm disc rotors, long wheelbases, a steady increase in travel over the past 20 years, all of which are aimed directly at the exact same goal. So why is wheel diameter off limits?

Finally, if we are going to compare DH racing to other sports/disciplines it only makes sense to start at the most similar. Zooming out from 'DH mountain bike racing' brings us simply to 'mountain bike racing' and from there to 'mountain bikes'. And what wheel size is used in mountain bike racing? In XC it went from 26 to 29 for the rolling advantage. In enduro it went from 26 to a mix of 275 and 29 in some cases based on testing and in other cases rider preference. So outside of DH racing, or simply asking what size wheels does a mountain bike have the answer will frequently be 29. Mountain bikes have 275 wheels and mountain bikes have 29 in wheels. They've been around for 15 years in other MTB applications, and were first raced at a DH World Cup in 2007, this is not some new tech that was just invented out of the blue. It's just taken this long for them to shed their image as XC only and the stigma that came with it. In all other disciplines of MTB racing the bikes run almost exclusively or significantly on 29in wheels, so from the UCI standpoint what compelling reason is there that DH mountain bikes should not be allowed 29 wheels too? Given all the other advancements made to DH bikes in the past few decades, many of which were met with resistance and skepticism at the time (suspension and disc brakes immediately come to mind) why the sudden adverse reaction to wheel diameter? Fear of the unknown? Not owning the latest and greatest? Feeling a bit embarrassed after spending so many years making fun the 29 lycra crowd and can't admit we were wrong (guilty as charged, but lets be honest, we were wrong)? Makes no sense at all to me.

PS, I'm biased, but Vital has by far the best comment discussions. They aren't the longest but they're definitely the most civil and thoughtful. Cheers to that.

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Liked a comment on the item Why Loic Bruni Won't Race his Prototype Specialized 29er at Fort William 6/1/2017 11:50 PM

One of the best things about MTB racing (XC and DH) is the lack of regulations on the bikes from the UCI. The lack of regulations is what makes MTB racing what it is, and has allowed this sport to evolve with different types of bikes, suspension used...more

Added a comment about video Why Loic Bruni Won't Race his Prototype Specialized 29er at Fort William 6/1/2017 11:50 PM
C138x104

I try to avoid the F1 comparisons to DH as they really have little in common aside from both involving vehicles rolling on tires filled with air. That said, a significant number of the F1 regulations and restrictions being bent to fit the anti-29 argument are in place to keep a teams relative advantage in check, discourage cheating, and keep the racing close and competitive. No one wants to watch one driver 20 seconds ahead or the whole field strung out with zero passing. The regs are there with the goal of keeping mass start racing close, competitive, and entertaining. Non of this applies to the time trial format of DH.

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