Ryan Howard is not a huge name in the mountain bike industry, however his name is well known around the dirt jump scene. Coming out of Aptos, California, Ryan Howard is one of the most butter smooth, dialed, and stylish riders I have ever seen. When Ryan rides it's evident why he took the "Most Steeze" title at the Ham and Steeze Jam.Here is a bit of information from the dog's mouth about what Ryan Howard has been up to
Ryan Howard is a local from the Aptos area that is known for his style, his attitude, and his drive. He will dig harder than anyone else, and still shred at that same high level once play time arrives. Ryan is a really well rounded rider, but seems to spend most of his time getting sideways as opposed to upside down. If you didn't understand that, Ryan is classified as a style rider, meaning he's not worried about busting tail whips and three whips on every other jump, he's more interested in flowing the jump pack, and making you look like a passenger.
Ryan Howard's bike is kind of a mish mash of parts from along the way. That mish mash is a bit of an Aptos trend that I noticed while there. Every rider would help another rider out to get him/her riding again. If you bust a crank arm and someone else has one that will get you riding again, they will let you use it. That being said, Ryan Howard's bike is constructed around being light, reliable, and quiet.
|Frame||2009 Specialized P3|
|Fork||2007 RockShox Pike - Lowered|
|Crankarms||Truvativ Holzfeller 165mm|
|Bottom Bracket||Truvativ Holzfeller|
|Handlebar||Blk Mrkt Bada Bing Bar|
|Grips||The Sensus Grips|
|Brakes||Avid Juicy Ultimate on the rear - 140mm Rotor|
|Front Wheel||Gravity Wheel|
|Rear Wheel||Gravity Wheel|
|Tires||Geax AKA and WTB Mutano Raptor|
|Tubes||the rubber kind, with LATEX|
|Saddle||SDG Patriot Proto|
Howard's bike was based off a 2009 Specialized P3 frame. He mentioned that the guys over at Specialized have been hooking him up with some frames, so it's good to see that the frames are holding up to the abuse. A fair amount of riders in the Aptos area ride Specialized bikes, along side Blk Mrkt bikes. Ryan's bike was pretty standard when it came down to components. A RockShox Pike 454 fork was on the front of his bike, with Gravity wheels front and back. Some Truvativ cranks, a Gamut chain guide, and a wide Blk Mrkt bar.
Howard is sponsored by SDG and he runs their I-Beam saddle setup. Unlike many of the riders in the Aptos area Howard runs gears, but uses a high end SRAM X.O rear derailleurs. The SRAM X.O is about as nice as it gets for rear derailleurs, so it's no wonder why Ryan was running it. It keeps his chain taught, and on his gears, and when it's time it can provide all the motion needed to either speed up, or slow down the pace.
Ryan Howard's bike had some unique stickers on it, such as the massive Howard on the drive side down tube, however, Ryan was also showing support for Stephen Murray
. All over the non-drive side down tube were Stay Strong stickers, showing his support for the cause.
Ryan Howard has managed to keep a fairly small name for himself, however, in the future you're going to be seeing a whole lot more of this guy. Wicked skills, awesome attitude, and the drive to make it big all ensure that Ryan Howard has what it takes to make it.