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What a brilliant idea: Chiangmai Bike Park

So while I was scoffing lunch today I headed over to pinkbike.com to check out the latest the interweb has to offer in the MTB world where I saw a fantastic video “Wild Winter Jungle Shredding and Good Times in Thailand” based at BikePark Chiangmai.

A bike park in Thailand? Oh massive win!!

Anyway, I jumped onto Youtube and found this little nugget which shows one of the things available – a “real world” MTB Training Centre. Looks like it may have been created by “Loose Riders” as far as I can tell – but:

What a simply and utterly brilliant idea! Built on what looks like a fairly small footprint, the concept looks like a progressive way to practice all those gnarly skills you want to improve on.

I have to say, whoever came up with this as a plan is a flipping genius.

Anyone up for an Alps alternative??

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So I just can’t talk about it

Yeah. It’s true. I just can’t talk about it.

Despite the fact that I am in possession of some “hot off the press industry type spy shots” sent to me by a like minded sole which concern some genuinely innovative future mtb frame designs… I have promised I will not talk about it.

I just won’t…

*Sigh*

I ALSO cannot talk about the type of bike that the “individual who came by the above information” has recently acquired. Mostly cos that would sort of give the game away.

So I just can’t…

*Double Sigh*

And despite the fact this is the one and only genuine scoop I am ever likely to get in my life, a promise made to a mate is more important.

So moving on…

*Arse*

Anyway, to make myself feel better and because I’ve fundamentally got nothing to say in this blog post but mostly because the TFITers expressed a desire to see it – I thought I’d share a video for one of this summer’s “Gingerbread Tour” destinations – Tigne.

No-one has ridden there but if the little nugget below is anything to go by, oh yeah baby – bring it on!

Thanks to Mirko R for sharing the love

Transition Bikes: Engineered to Party

They’re having a busy year are those lovely people at Transition Bikes.

So aside from already launching two new carbon hardtails this year, namely the 27.5 Throttle (dribble…) and the 29er Vanquish (double dribbles…) they not only gone and done it again with the equally excellently named Transition Sentinel.

Transition Sentinel

PinkBike had some “spy shots” of the Sentinel the other day which I was deeply appreciative of but now you can see a +rider shot on Transition’s site, which 108% more awesomer…

So as I wrote a few days ago, PinkBike had a cracking article the other week about Transition Bikes new approach to bike geometry call “Speed Balanced Geometry”. I wondered out loud what that would mean for their 2018’s bike lineup. Well, it did not take them very long to answer that with the announcement of the Sentinel long travel 29er.

Looks like Transition have definitely found a bit of “Nicolai-esque” inspiration in this approach and totally made it their own, and I have to say – JUST WOW! OMG that’s a slack looking beast of a bike. And it’s grey. And that just helps. It just does. I’m also interested to see Fox fork, dropper (I think?), but can’t make out the shock.

If you want to see what Transition say about “SBG” (that just sounds so cool…), check out this video:

I cannot wait to see the full spec of the Sentinel when it’s released later this year. Of course I now have to try to work which of the three new bikes I would like most of all.

That could take months…

 

 

Longer, Slacker, Faster, Harder

Just been reading an fascinating article on PinkBike by Mike Kazimer about Transition Bike’s movement towards what they are calling “Speed Balanced Geometry“.

Mike talks to Lars Sternberg and Sam Burkhardt from Transition to give the lowdown on Transition’s take on ever evolving bike geometry but more specifically a brilliant breakdown of just exactly what the hell it all means when you actually ride.

With Mark T on his Nicolai G13 which has made the TFITers collectively go “Oooooohhh I see…” I can only wait with baited breath for some announcement from Bellingham’s best as to what this means for their upcoming bikes.

I thoroughly recommend you check out the article on PinkBike here.

Quote of the Day: Maxxis Minion DHF 2.5

Tyres for the Alps? The question is currently burning like Madras with too many chillis in the minds of the TFITers at the moment.

What do you take? Speed or grip? Which manufacturer? Which type?

Then like a poet sitting on the throne of truth (…!) Matt W sent through a sage Whatsapp this morning of a quote he read on BikeRadar about the Maxxis Minion DHF 3c 29 extolling the virtues of 2.5 over the 2.3…

… but if gravity is the gravy on your riding roast, the 2.5in is unbeatable…

Quite what the tyres are like I have no idea (although they get 4/5 on BR and are outrageously chunky looking) AND Mark T is sporting a close cousin on the front of his G13 at the moment.

But I have to say, Guy Kesteven – just wow, that is definitely my quote of the day…

Deathgrip

Brendan Fairclough, Brandon Semenuk, Josh Bryceland, Sam Hill, Andreau Lacondeguy, Sam Reynolds, Ryan Howard, Nico Vink, Andrew Neethling, Dan Atherton, Kyle Jameson, Olly Wilkins.

Yeah, that’s kind of a role call of the “somewhat super-talented” and “substantially fearless” right there.

So Mr Fairclough’s long gestating MTB monster of a film “Deathgrip” is out on various channels today. I’ve just pressed the hot and sweaty “buy” button on iTunes and will be enjoying this later tonight but in the meantime, check out the trailer if you are in any doubt at the size of these guys balls.

 

TrailAddiction no more

Wow. What a shocker.

While waiting for a code build this morning I had a quick browse of the interweb for all things MTB and Les Arcs related (37 days and counting) and came across the TrailAddiction site.

Or rather I didn’t, because all the site has on it is a “highly sterile notification” that TA have gone into administration.

This is super sad news because Trail Addiction have been stalwarts of Alps related fun for many a year and I know a couple of people who thoroughly enjoyed trips with them in the past. My heart also goes out to anyone who has (or had) a trip for this year booked with them as the statement on the site (related to package holidays):

These holidays will not be going ahead…

…seems fairly brutal and final to me. According to the TA site, it also looks like the Les Arcs Enduro2 event has been canned as well. That sucks. It really, really does. If you know anyone who has something booked – pass the word.

#Update – apparently this happened in March – shows you how on the ball I am! However, it still sucks monkey balls…

TrailAddiction? #TrailRehab

If only I’d fitted a tow bar

I’m lucky enough to live in a part of the world where I can ride out from my front door and get to a mass of excellent trails without ever having to look at my car. But, as with everyone else who likes to mix it up occasionally there comes a point where your MTB has to be attached to / inserted into your car to get to the trailhead.

And seeing as I live in the UK where a pickup truck is not really an option as a daily runabout that means using a bike rack of one kind or another. And that, if I’m honest, terrifies the living pants off me.

You know, that highly uncomfortable feeling when you catch sight of the “bike shadow” as you drive (clearly at no more than 65mph…) to the ride site and feel that slightly puckering feeling as you see it wobbling around in the wind or as you go round the corner.

So I’m always interested in any method of “securely” and “safely” transporting your beloved and highly precious bike that does not involve borrowing a van from your local friendly Bob. So it was with great interest I followed a link from James G this morning to check out Scorpion Racks.

This Surrey Hills based company offer a very sturdy and securely fixed mounting rack (with two fitting options – plate or towbar) which will take up to two bikes, is apparently Carbon Fibre friendly (they are from Surrey after all…), folds away and allows you to still access the boot if needed.

It’s not cheap at £349 but to be honest, securely fitting your bike to your car is not really something you want to skimp on. So all I’ve got to do is fit a towbar…

Trail Hazards, Mark’s G13 and a Jeffsy

Ah summer in Surrey. Dry trails. The marbles are in full blossom and the BOA (Bramble on Apex) have their thorny goodness available to snag the unwary rider on every corner. It is a thing of wonder and joy. Except of course for the little bitey bastard bugs or of course the ones with a death wish that seem to want to be eaten by you as you hurl yourself down your local trail.

However, mountain bikers of Surrey we should all rejoice – at least we have no bears! I refer you to the video James G sent me this morning posted by Dušan Vinžík on YouTube which shows what riders in Slovakia have to deal with. Kind of puts those “bitey bugs” in perspective doesn’t it – they may bite but they’re unlikely to eat you AND your bike…

I have to agree with panzerfaulst12345 though – just exactly why the fuck did they stop!?!

Anyway – for those that can there is a brief PB ridette this evening planned leaving mine at 7:30ish. After all we only have a rapidly reducing 58 days until wheels down in Les Arcs for “The Foam Tour 2017”.

And speaking of that, most have heard (and seen the results on Strava…) that Mark T has taken delivery of his Mojo/Nicolai G13. I think that’s what its called at any rate. I did catch Mr T taking delivery of it at Cycleworks and I’m looking forward to Mark leaving me in his dust on a TFIT in the near future. Hopefully now Mark has had chance to get a couple of rides in (and bagged some well respectable PRs and a 3rd on the TFIT roller) he’ll be commenting on his most considered of first impressions here soon.

And speaking of bike reviews – a certain Mr F spent last Friday at Swinley Forest at the YT Industries demo day trying out his current source of major temptation – the YT Jeffsy 29er – again, we hope for a post ride appraisal shortly

See you later or on Thursday

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