Wednesday, July 31, 2013

Team Transition Enduro update

Lars and Bars and Team Krunkshox were on hand at the World Enduro Freeride Festival Series at Winter Park, and they delivered some A-grade reporting. No idea what the results were, but here's what I do know:


Solid work guys. 

Saturday, July 27, 2013

The most anticipated World Cup round in a long time

If Sam Hill takes it, people will lose their minds. I'll have to eat my words (again), because a few years back I predicted no one would ever win a World Cup on flat pedals going forward.

If Aaron Gwin wins, people will lose their minds, and a whole lot of people will have to eat their words.

It's pretty rad that qualifying was on Friday, because now we get to sit around and guess. Racing is sweet.

The above video should also put a lot of things in perspective. If that video doesn't clearly spell out the tension and conflict between building and riding "sustainable trail" versus building and riding trail that actually prepares you for World Cups or any serious races, you probably need a coloring book or an episode of Blue's Clues to walk you through this dilemma.

Whenever you hear sustainability come up in trail building conversations, understand that sustainability will *almost* certainly come at the cost of fun. Not always, but almost always. Because as absolutely horrendous as that trail in France drains, everyone at the race seems to agree that it's the best, funnest course in a long time. Nine times out of ten, people using the word sustainability will ruin fun and make horrible trail.

Thursday, July 25, 2013

Chris King Buzz

Aaron Radford.
Alex McGuinness.
Carson Storch.
The Syndicate.
This guy:

Bikes are rad. The guys at Chris King get that.

Five tens

If you have a pair of Five Tens that you call your "trail building shoes," you're an idiot.

"Oh, but they're so grippy and stout." Find me a single trail-building crew on the planet that chooses to wear Impacts or Freeriders or Spitfires over, I don't know, hiking boots or work boots. And when I say "trail building crew" I don't mean all your bros and you who built half a shitty "flow trail" one time five years ago.

I mean the prison-crew kind that lays down miles of single track a day waaaay out in the boonies, where every guy could rip your arms off and looks like Jesse Ventura or The Rock or Michael Clark Duncan from the Green Mile, where they have to forage for food and weather out lightning storms and fight off bears and mosquitos the size of baseballs everyday. AKA profoundly not you. Find me that trail crew that's all "shah bro, Impacts are so practical."

Your know what shoes make great "trail building shoes"?



Proof that at least one of our shirts isn't being used as a shop towel or TP. 

Tuesday, July 23, 2013

Why Euros are faster than us

No, this was not taken at Winter Park or Northstar or Mountain Creek. This is freaking Yugoslavia, people. So while you're patting yourselves on the back for building your spoiled nine year old who failed out of karate class the ultimate dual suspension Jackson Goldstone Lil' Shredder™ bike with a full color-matched TLD kit and carbon D3, Sergei and Tatania over in Yugoslavia have Sergei Jr. on a POS walmart edition crushing out laps in kneepads over sweatpants.

Sergei Jr. doesn't give two shits. That's the eye of the tiger right there: no hesitation, no fear. This kid will be faster than all of us in three years. No, he'll probably never be world champ, but he and all his comrades will be owning 40th-80th place at every world cup you or I will ever go to, which is fast enough to bump most of the disappointing field of American riders out of qualifying position. At the end of the day, Americans are all afraid of their kids skinning their knee or *gasp* finding out that they suck at 99% of the stuff they do. Participation medals don't win championships.

Look at the helmet. Deep in your heart we both know you're more of a pussy than Sergei Jr.. And he probably loves freedom more than you do.

Monday, July 22, 2013

The brutal return of "Metal Monday"

I normally hate myself, but...

I'm pretty proud of the team effort we put in at last weekend's Port Angeles National Dirt Cascadia World Enduro Pro Cup NW (or PANDCWEPCNW for short).

Sort of a "how-to Enduro" tutorial in these four pictures here:

Big shout out to the Senior Vice President of Design at Transition Bikes, Darrin Seeds, for really dialing in my FRO graphics for stage 3 of the Produro, and to Lars Sternberg for dialing in some other graphics. Drifting through the vast sea of abysmal, soul-crushing failures that is my riding career, it's nice to land on a small island of "nailed it" every once in a while.

Also, everyone that I've talked to is still blown away and maybe a little confused that these Cascadia Dirt Cup races can be run so well in their first season, and that the Oregon Enduro Series can be run so badly in it's fifth (?) season. Sure, we haven't had a DJ or a boring recap video at Cold Creek or Port Angeles, but we have had sweet courses, a safe shuttle, stage results for all individual stages, and awards were over by five both times.

Sunday, July 21, 2013


BREAKING NEWS from Llangynog, North Wales.

For the fourth straight race this season, Gee Atherton has actually run his sponsor's helmet, the One Industries Gamma. Atherton has also won all four races, a huge turn-around from the last two seasons where no one really cared about anything Gee did except Rampage.

Industry experts are speculating that Gee's decisions to sacrifice his lighter, better looking, and more comfortable Troy Lee Designs carbon D3 and to actually use his sponsor's product have pleased the Sponsor Gods, leading to what the Keepers of the Temple of Sponsors refer to as "positive sponsor karma."

After taking the World Cup overall win in 2010 while using the Evo Carbon helmet provided by sponsor SixSixOne, Atherton was frustratingly unable to win races that anyone cared about during 2011 and 2012 while wearing an off-sponsor helmet, the Troy Lee Designs D3.




Here's the inside scoop, straight from the man himself:

"After the Norway race last season I finally realized that the Sponsor Gods, in their all-powerful and titanic rage, had cursed my last two seasons and doomed my greatest aspirations to failure. I sat down with my team manager Dan Brown and we talked about how to really dial in the program for 2013. During the off-season we ascended a massive volcano, summoned the angry spirits of the Sponsor Gods, and cast my TLD helmet into the fiery chasm to appease their monumental fury. We also performed a live human sacrifice of the agent that got us the Continental tires deal. 

It took a while before I was comfortable looking like a life-size bobble head rolling down the course in my enormous new One Industries moto helmet, but after the Sponsor Gods began smiting my enemies and laying waste to their villages and families, I knew we'd made the right decision. We think appeasing the Sponsor Gods has been a big part of the team's success this year, and we're excited to be on a four-race winning streak heading into Andorra. Back at Atherton HQ we've got a good feeling about this year."

Thursday, July 18, 2013

New Poll

New poll on the right side of the screen.

Tuesday, July 16, 2013

Pedal test

A long time ago the Internet decided that thinner pedals are better. It was quickly agreed upon as almost indisputable fact that good pedals were as thin as possible. Normally I trust everything I read on the Internet, but I'm gonna go with my instinct on this one and do some original research.

I've been waiting a while for the right pedals and the right pins, and the time has come. As usual I've got my own stupid theory as to why thicker pedals might be better, but for now I can just test and compare. Someday soon I'll explain my hypothesis with graphs and charts and stuff, but for now I will shut up and ride my bike. The Burgtec Penthouse II's and the Point One Podiums are ideal for this test, because they have almost identical dimensions in every respect except thickness, they are drastically different thicknesses, and they are both well-respected products with lots of race wins under their belts. We call that "Ceteris Paribus" in school. 

22mm thick Burgtec's vs. 11mm thick Point Ones. The battle begins.

Pins are tall. 7mm tall. Also, while I am open-minded to which pedal will actually perform better, I think the debate is pretty much settled on which of the two designs will survive Judgment Day by the Terminators and(or) multiple seasons of riding.

Big shout out to Matt Thompson and Todd Olson for making this test possible. I've already sampled the tall Burgtec downhill pins on my calves, and I can certify that they are taller and sharper than the standard pins. I rewatched that Brook MacDonald/Val di Sol foot out drift video, and now I understand why Brook is so determined to keep his leg away from his Burgtec's while drifting.

Monday, July 15, 2013

Industry banter

I wasn't there, but here are some thoughts on the recent Oregon Enduro at Thrillium, from someone smarter than me:
I don't think anyone died on Thrillium this weekend at OES but there was a ton of human shit in the woods near the parking area since they forgot to rent porta potties. I understand there was a professional DJ though so at least their priorities were straight. Enduro needs more DJ booths.
The list of curiosities about OES just keeps growing: making full face helmets mandatory a week before a race, not telling anyone about the discover pass requirement until 3 days before, 5-6 hour results delays, etc, etc. etc.
It's like Devon is going out of his way to make everyone take a really expensive bite of his homemade shit sandwich.

That's so enduro.

Everything about this video sucked.

The right way and the wrong way

We read the words on a page left to right. Podiums should be no different. Second place goes to the left of third, fourth place is to the left of fifth, etc. 

Why, ProGRT and Southridge racing? Why?

These are the same race promoters that can put their heads together and conclude that Fontana makes a good National track, so I guess a backwards podium/inability to read left to right doesn't come as the biggest surprise. 

For those less versed in the language of sarcasm and(or) mountain bike culture, that was a tried and true "Fontana sucks" joke. On mountain bike hate sites that's the equivalent of a layup. 

By the way, in case you saw the above 2009 Bromont podium and got a little misty-eyed for the good old days, here's a link to the Sicklines article I stole the photo from and a link to the Dirt TV from the race:

Bryn was wearing a Navajo blanket, Mark Beaumeant was STILL on GT, Fabian had half a knee, Aaron Gwin's second podium, and Sam Hill was in the leader's jersey. The good old days. The video quality sucks but whaaaaa...

Monday, July 8, 2013

Credible use of the word "slaying"

People who can get away with saying that: See above.

People who cannot get away with saying that: you.

Friday, July 5, 2013

Aaron Chase rides Highland brakeless

I can't embed this video right now, but check it out on vital when you get the chance.,21892/970biking,307

Here's what I learned from watching Aaron Chase take his brakes off and ride Hellion at Highland Mountain Bike Park in New Hampshire:

1. Math still works. I've only ridden Hellion once, and I never tried to ride it brakeless, but here are some quick numbers: 600 feet of elevation, 3 minutes and 30 second of trail, and 37 turns. Given those numbers and even a basic understanding of trail building and(or) mathematics would lead you to conclude that A) Hellion probably has the average gradient of a bowling lane, and B) yeah, not surprised it can be ridden brakeless. 

2. Aaron Chase still cannot scrub. 

3. Despite TEAM ROBOT'S best efforts to clarify the the term, internet caption writers still do not understand the word "scrub."

4. If you want to keep those Red Bull paychecks coming long after you've ceased to be relevant, you've got to hustle. Also see: Brett Tippie, Jeff Lenosky, and of course, the once exciting but clearly past-their-prime Diamondback downhill riders Charlie  Sponsel and Kyle Thomas. 

5. Oh yeah,
and nice kit, One Industries. Solid.