Rachel Throop, now known as Rachel Strait, has been rocking it with the GT Factory team racing enduro. She walks us through her two favorite bikes, a GT Helion and GT Sanction. The Helion is her daily driver while the Sanction handles EWS and even DH duty. Dig into these 27.5-inch steeds and vote for your favorite at the end of the feature. -photos and interview by Dan Severson

Rachel discusses the bikes in the audio

Rachel Throop's GT Helion Carbon 27.5 Spec and Details

  • Fork: RockShox Pike, 140mm travel
  • Shock: RockShox Monarch XX with remote - 110mm travel
  • Bars: Race Face SixC 35, 750mm width
  • Stem: Race Face Turbine 35, 60mm length
  • Brakes: SRAM Carbon XX
  • Drivetrain: SRAM XX1 1x - 32t chainring, X1 1180 cassette
  • Pedals: Crank Brothers Candy
  • Wheels: Stan's NoTubes Crest 27.5
  • Tires: Vittoria Morsa 2.35 front, Barzo 2.35 rear (for now)
  • Seat post: RockShox Reverb, 150mm travel
  • Saddle: Ergon SME3 Pro Carbon
  • Grips: Ergon GA2
  • Weight: 25.8 pounds

Rachel Throop's GT Sanction Pro Spec and Details

  • Fork: RockShox Lyrik, 170mm travel
  • Shock: RockShox Monarch R Plus Debonair with rebound and compression adjust - 160mm travel
  • Bars: Race Face SixC 35, 750mm width
  • Stem: Race Face Atlas 35, 65mm length
  • Brakes: SRAM GUIDE Ultimate, 180mm rotors
  • Drivetrain: SRAM Eagle X01 1x - 34t chainring, XG 1295 cassette
  • Pedals: Crank Brothers Mallet E
  • Wheels: Stan's NoTubes Arch 27.5
  • Tires: Vittoria Morsa 2.4 front and rear (for now) 19 psi front, 20 psi rear (not a typo)
  • Seat post: RockShox Reverb, 125mm travel
  • Saddle: Ergon SME3 Pro Carbon
  • Grips: Ergon GE1
  • Weight: 29 pounds

Vote for your favorite!

Vital MTB Poll

Bike vs Bike - Rachel Throop's Trail Bikes

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21 comments
  • Verbl Kint

    2/6/2017 12:01 PM

    How tall is Rachel?

  • 49sub

    2/1/2017 10:46 PM

    Gotta love that Eagle, what a wide spread. Surprised it wasn't the golden color though!

  • onenerdykid*

    2/1/2017 9:49 AM

    Why do you (Vital) continuously refer to her as "Throop" when her name is now "Strait"? Seems kinda weird that you acknowledge it, but then continue to call her by her old name... Just curious.

  • jasen.gomez

    2/1/2017 5:34 AM

    As GT riders we ride to seriously have fun period ! 1st or last,,we're the ones smiling all day ! Rachel is a great ambassador for our sport at every race she attends and her bikes are badass !! Go Rachel Go ! #GTCoalition

  • chrisingrassia

    1/31/2017 9:59 PM

    It's weird that every single comment on this article is below zero. So odd.

  • T-Dawg

    1/31/2017 6:03 PM

    She's doing good for the sport. It's not all about spraying champagne in people's faces. I guess haters gonna hate tho .....that's life in the biz

  • hbelly13

    1/31/2017 5:54 PM

    Take it home today!!!

  • saraS

    1/31/2017 12:10 PM

    How is she sponsored by GT she gets last at every race.

  • jeff.brines

    1/31/2017 12:57 PM

    EDITED. All other comments were deleted and I don't feel like retyping.

    Good luck in 17 Rachel.

  • Kapoa

    1/31/2017 1:52 PM

    In our GT bicycles world, "Fun is serious business". I am GT bicycles ambassador for Portugal and I don't even race! Is not all about races and get the best results.
    Go Rachel, you are the best! We are GT Bicycles!

  • erik saunders

    2/1/2017 7:51 AM

    Absolutely... she is at the races and having fun, 100% good vibes... friendly and approachable, please and thank you... always time to chat... and she does actually out-jump 90% of the people there male or female... and people notice that... she is a crowd favorite and people like to see her ride, both men and women... thats valuable... especially when a lot of the riders in the top 5 can be quite focused on their race and come off as aloof or rude... it takes all types of athletes on the team to accomplish the goals a brand sets out... its not all about who is at the top of the leaderboard when it comes to "results"...

  • bikeboardorblade

    2/1/2017 9:35 AM

    She cheered me on at Sea Weasel last year, I definitely agree with the friendly and approachable part. I'd say she's a great ambassador for GT. Haters are always going to find something to complain about. Keep it up Rachel and GT!

  • saraS

    1/31/2017 2:48 PM

    I'm just tired of pretty girls with poor results getting full rides.

  • Oz_Taylor

    1/31/2017 3:57 PM

    I totally agree with you but don't blame the rider, blame the industry. Rachel can't help being pretty and into racing mountain bikes.

  • odin

    1/31/2017 5:35 PM

    Why do you care? is it stopping you from getting sponsored? she is making a living from what she loves and using her talent and looks to promote herself and the brand she represent,nothing wrong with that.

  • jive turkey

    1/31/2017 7:02 PM

    I once read somewhere: "Don't hate the player, hate the game."

    Nice bikes, Rachel.

  • chrisingrassia

    1/31/2017 10:08 AM

    She was selling her Sanction on PB not too long ago. May still be for sale actually.

  • jasen.gomez

    2/4/2017 8:12 AM

    older model.....new bikes,,sell the old ones...

  • headless chicken

    1/31/2017 10:08 AM

    The fact that she can only get a 125mm dropper into the Sanction says it all

  • trib

    1/31/2017 3:51 PM

    That she's not tall enough to need a longer dropper?

  • DarKmaN

    1/31/2017 4:15 PM

    I own a Sanction and know exactly what you mean. Still a damn good bike though for the money.

    I wonder what tune her Monarch has? ML? I never got along with the Monarch as much as my CCDB Air