7 Downhill Bike Checks - Crankworx Rotorua

Mar 27, 2015
by Mike Kazimer  
Crankworx Rotorua
Eliot Jackson piloted his Pivot Phoenix to a second place finish behind Loic Bruni, showing that he's coming into the season with plenty of speed. He's running Race Face's SIXC carbon cranks and 35mm handlebar, with a Shimano Saint rear derailleur and Saint brakes. Jackson wasn't on the newest Fox suspension quite yet – so far that seems to be reserved for the very uppermost echelon of riders, but he's expecting to be running it a little later in the season.


Crankworx Rotorua
The combination of Gee's flourescent yellow GT Fury 27.5 and his white kit covered in World Champ stripes was hard to miss out on the hill. Unfortunately, a crash during practice left him battered and bruised, and he finished in 9th place on race day.

Crankworx Rotorua
Both Gee and Rachel are on the new FOX DHX2 suspension.
Crankworx Rotorua
Gee uses a trimmed down Shimano cassette with a couple spacers behind it to achieve a seven speed drivetrain.


Crankworx Rotorua
Rachel Atherton took the win today aboard her teal Fury 27.5, a victory that should help her roll up to the starting line of the first World Cup in two weeks time with a little extra confidence. Her bike was set up with the still-to-be-announced FOX DHX2 shock paired with a FOX 40 up front. It looks like Shimano have a new shoe in the works as well – the AM9, which keeps the lace cover found on the AM45, but now also has a velcro strap over the midfoot.


Crankworx Rotorua
Louis Hamilton is a Rotorua local, which meant he had an extra loud contingent of fans out on the course. His Commencal Supreme rolls on Mavic Deemax wheels shod with the 26 x 2.4” version Maxxis' Shorty, a tire that's well suited to the steep and rutted course.


Crankworx Rotorua
Any guesses as to which Aussie was rocking these pedals? Chunked is a small Australian company that makes crowns, stems, and the Flatout pedal shown here. Unfortunately, Chris Kovarik's podium dreams were thwarted by a flat tire, and he wasn't able to demonstrate his trademark loose style.


Crankworx Rotorua
Crankworx Rotorua
Crankworx Rotorua

Dean Lucas was putting in the runs for Devinci Global Racing aboard his Wilson SL. There was the possibility for rain, so in preparation two strips of Five Ten's dot patterned sticky rubber were glued to his Prologo seat for even more grip in the wet. Luckily the rain held off, and riders were treated to near-perfect dirt conditions.



Crankworx Rotorua

Sam Blenkinsop was looking fast and comfortable on the course aboard Norco's new carbon Aurum. He was another of the elite riders sporting FOX's DHX2. Given how prevalent the new shock was, it shouldn't be long before the final details and availability are announced.


Crankworx Rotorua
Crankworx Rotorua
Crankworx Rotorua

Bernard Kerr's made a name for himself over the past few months thanks to his insane stoppie skills, so a photo of his front brake on his stealthy Pivot Phoenix was a must. Turns out, it's a stock Shimano Saint brake that gets the credit for allowing him to nose wheelie down the back side of jumps that most riders would be happy enough to successfully clear. Bernard runs Maxxis Minion DHR tires front and rear, but he cuts every other side knob, turning the L-shaped knobs into rectangles, a cut that adds a little more rolling speed but without sacrificing cornering traction.


97 Comments

  • + 179
 Pumped to see Eliot Jackson on the podium!
  • + 61
 James Stewart of DH!!!
  • - 22
flag rjdelly (Mar 27, 2015 at 16:35) (Below Threshold)
 What makes him the James Stewart of DH?
  • + 100
 @rjdelly He is black and he is fast
  • + 19
 his smile
  • - 30
flag panzer103 (Mar 27, 2015 at 16:48) (Below Threshold)
 b.l.a.c.k....
  • + 35
 I was hoping he was going to take the win. He seemed super genuine, modest, and just happy to be there.
  • + 12
 Did James Stewart race in slippers like Eliot?
  • + 42
 Funny how fox didn't think he was important enough to get their shock, and he took silver.
  • - 6
flag rjdelly (Mar 27, 2015 at 21:03) (Below Threshold)
 @norcodudemanrises i thought maybe it was because they both take Adderall......
  • + 5
 definitly the most stylish rider out there
  • + 13
 He's got such a good, positive, contagious energy and personality - The sport needs him.
  • - 1
 Didn't he retire?
  • + 0
 Anyone else wondering why Blenkinsop is running cut down Dirty Dan's and not Magic Mary's?
  • + 0
 I think Shaums March unofficially claimed that title a while back. Black or white the guy has winning talent and personality.
  • + 1
 Care to elaborate?
  • + 1
 ...@Panzer103....
  • + 52
 The only fellow running 26" tires ends up with the "29" plate. Hilarious coincidence, or work of bike industry illuminati?
  • + 39
 I hate the New Fox fork decals so much.
  • + 10
 kind of makes it look cheap to me... I like it serious when I spend that much money...
  • + 12
 Just get new decals that you like problem solved
  • + 14
 I really like them, but the orange shock spring looks wack
  • + 16
 Thats funny, I love them!
  • + 4
 I wouldn't worry. With everyone running around covering everything from forks to shocks to rims in custom decals these days we probably won't have to look at them long.
  • + 6
 Ye and the orange spring reminds me of my old WalMart bike when I was a kid
  • - 2
 decals look sic bro, new spring looks sic too, about time they got rid of liberal conservatives vanilla black ugly looking shock and spring from the 60s, its 2015 pussies (HFU)
  • + 2
 The spring might be a little loud, but I don't hear anyone complaining about Öhlins. And if you hate it that much, springs can be replaced at least as easily as decals.
  • + 5
 Yeah I also thought about Öhlins, that is another thing first of all i think the yellow spring looks way better than the orange fox one and second its in their tradition to do it that way
  • + 2
 Ohlins yellow looks pimp in a glass cabinet but I wouldn't really want one on my bike. Yellow is easier to colour coordinate than orange though, and it screams "Ohlins!". This Fox orange rather screams "I wish I were Ohlins!" which is not quite as cool.
  • + 5
 I think the message FOX sends is: Hey Öhlins - Cool marketing you got there! We just made our own color inspired by Fox's fur - cool aye? Where is yours coming from? Tray in restaurant at IKEA? Hey Öhlins! Does your shock come in separate boxes and client assembles it by himself?
  • + 4
 Makes sense with the orange spring and white fork. Do you get clip on whiskers too? It would be rad if the box the fork came in had an orange and white fox head mask you could cut out from the back.
  • + 1
 That would be cool. My son would love it.
  • + 1
 Just be careful with putting anything FOX related on your child's face... yes, their products have THAT much stiction!
  • + 1
 I haven't really been a fan of fox until now. 20mm axle and now fold out fox masks... no one else is doing that kind of cutting edge shit.
  • + 2
 I have always been a fan of things of relatively high quality that come cheap and in good condition from second hand market...
  • + 29
 Is it just me or is the Geeman running two of the same smallest rings on his cassete!?
  • + 2
 It's not just you! I wonder why he runs 2 11 speed sprockets. Must ask Polish Pete!
  • + 20
 My guess is he does it for chainline; he just uses the 6, and the last one is used instead of a spacer b/c it has the knurling to lock the locking.
  • + 10
 it looks like the spacing on the last 11T cog is also larger then the more inner one. Wonder if its a 9 or 10 speed cog. Again this supports the theory that its just there for spacing to get better chainline. Still a rather hack mod though.
  • + 0
 I think some people do it to make sure they can't miss top gear too. I believe the large space between the upper jockey wheel and the 11t sprocket makes for slightly less crisp shifting than in the larger sprockets.
  • + 25
 Those pivots are the most beautiful DH bike out right now in my opinion. Stoked to see Eliot Jackson with a Podium!
  • + 8
 The stealth Phoenix looks really hot
  • + 3
 They not only look great, but ride outstanding as well!! Love mine!
  • + 1
 Im loving the new paint scheme for the wilson
  • + 1
 when people are talking bout a bike and yours is in the mail Smile
  • + 24
 Am I the only person that doesn't like GT's?
  • + 12
 I'm not really a fan either, the wing style rear triangle is strange. As if they have to add flare to make it a good looking bike. Where as the tr500's and pivot bikes are simple and not overdone, in my opinion.
  • + 5
 No, I don't like them, either. Like Katakalism said, it's the rear triangle. They've been ugly for years now.
  • + 6
 Its kind of part of their styling, GT's have always had funky tube junctions.
  • + 2
 I think is a looker...
  • + 6
 They always look like K-mart bikes. I don't know if its the logo or just how they brand themselves, but I never think elite when I see a GT.
  • + 1
 I think the new colors are bad looking liked the old black and yellow better but I don't see what you guys mean with the rear i think it looks pretty good
  • + 13
 Except I've never seen Kmart bikes win multiple world cups and world championships. ..
  • + 1
 The paintings were much better last year, that is true!
  • + 3
 Y'all crazy, they look great to me...complicated. Rachy's bike looks hot with that paint job!
  • + 23
 Forgive me my ignorance please, but why the hell do you need a grip on DH saddle?
  • + 12
 So if you slip a pedal and land on the seat in heavy mud you dont slide off the back. After not having one in the claggy mud at revolution, i can see the need if your expecting rain come race day
  • + 15
 Leonardo Devinci should be proud!!!
  • + 13
 sessions with orange springs
  • + 17
 Is that a request? Here you go: www.pinkbike.com/photo/12047717
  • + 9
 Hold on, is Pivot the same brand which dumped Micayla Gatto without saying a word?
  • + 8
 Bernard kerr is the manager
  • + 4
 errrrrrrrrrrrr..... I'm pretty sure Bernard cuts the side knobs in order to have a bigger channel between the side and center knobs for better cornering traction (hence why transitional knobs are shit in terms of absolute cornering grip). Doubt it reduces rolling resistance at all.
  • + 3
 Yeah I agree. The L shaped knob is there only for better braking bite. When the brake is applied the L shape provides a larger surface to dig into the ground. Cutting it into a normal size knob is going to make an uninterrupted channel for better cornering and slightly less braking bite.
  • + 4
 I gotta ask, does Bernard own any more clothes? Guy looks like dirty scrub in every photo there has ever been taken of him aboard a bike.
  • + 1
 Its hard to change clothes when you are stoppieing everywhere
  • + 5
 What is the point of the rubber strips on the seat if you are standing up 95% of the time anyways?
  • + 5
 That still leaves 5% where you could be gooch sliding around your saddle in the wet. The "Steve peat" tip is the same, but with a piece of tire zip tied.
  • + 1
 Why not take the 30 seconds it takes to put them on for the possibility of wet riding?
  • + 6
 Is orange now cooler than Ti?
  • + 2
 No But Ti Spings can do any color even multi coloured, Ti ti will always be factory kewel beyotches
  • + 5
 That Aurum looks sweet....
  • + 2
 Dunno if it's just me or not but I much prefer the look of Blenki's Aurum (with the Fox suspension) than the factory Aurum with the Boxxers
  • + 4
 Don't you just love Rachel? I do.
  • + 3
 I didn't know ed sheeran rode for pivot..
  • + 3
 Whats going on with those spring spacers on the devinci?
  • + 2
 Those are POM spacers from SA Racing springs for their coil springs,since SA Racing springs only come in 1 length.
  • + 1
 @fantaman what do they do?
  • + 3
 @ToonGTX - they take up the space between the spring and the preload ring. Otherwise there wouldn't be enough threads on the shock body to preload the spring.
  • + 1
 spring adapters. sa racing spring fits 200-240mm dampers. u need the extra on the vivid.

ep1.pinkbike.org/p6pb11980196/p5pb11980196.jpg
  • + 2
 Those spacers come in different sizes to fit each brand shock,the spacer system hold the spring in place with the best fit on a MTB coil shock.
  • + 1
 you barely notice them on a Fox shock
  • + 2
 pretty lame pivot doesn't get the fox double barrel, they got a great team and a solid looking bike
  • + 1
 Eliot may not be on factory suspension, but he placed 2nd......What will happen when he does get high end fox suspension?????
  • + 1
 Eliot Jackson: 'stuff ya factory suss, I'll get second anyway!!'
  • + 2
 boy those phoenix are hot as hell...
  • + 1
 Does nobody run hope brakes anymore?
  • + 1
 Are those two 12t cogs on gees cassette?
  • + 1
 No Carbon YT, umm, moar moar pse
  • + 1
 Didn't know the Athertons were running Stans Flow rims?
  • + 1
 Bad luck Gee was hoping to see you take it ...good on ya Rach
  • + 2
 Would love to try GT
  • + 1
 is Rachel's shoes a new shimano?

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