Video: The New MRP Ribbon SL Fork is Designed for Downcountry

Jul 10, 2019
by MRP Bike  

PRESS RELEASE: MRP

Are you “downcountry”? The new Ribbon SL from MRP is.

Easily dismissed as yet another sub-genre of mountain biking, “downcountry” is actually a perfect distillation of the type of experience that a lot of us are after. It’s not a type of riding or racing, nor is it a niche within a niche, and it’s definitely not just synonymous with “trail”. Downcountry is a way of life, it’s the “I’m gonna send it” mentality applied to bike and component choice, pace, and overall attitude. It’s not specific to a particular part of the ride, not the downhill or the climb, it’s the whole shebang.


It’s Tomac-era mountain biking: leaping before you look, two-wheel drifting, and sprinting to exhaustion. It’s squeezing every last minute out of your lunch ride, showing back up at work drenched in sweat, caked in dust, and possibly bleeding a little here and there. It’s that heart-skipping moment you think you might have cut a tight line too close and yet, miraculously, nothing happens at all. It’s that moment you catch yourself riding way outside your capabilities because you’ve somehow ended up between two faster riders on the weekly shop ride. It’s hanging it all out for an imaginary, virtual trophy that not even your parents will congratulate you for winning.

Downcountry is best experienced with components that can handle day-in, day-out punishment. You don’t have a World Cup pit setup awaiting you at the trailhead or a mechanic to tear down and rebuild your rig between rides. You can’t downcountry like a boss cowboy or cowgirl without a trusty steed. A downcountry-ready bike can’t suck the life out of you on the climb or hold you back on the descent.

Enter the Ribbon SL, a downcountry fork that’s both business and party in the front. Heck, its business is to party. It’s our award-winning Ribbon on the Keto diet — slimmed down, chiseled, and ripped. A chassis based around 35mm stanchions vetted for heavy lifting, but trimmed of all fat. With up to 130mm of travel, the Ribbon SL perfectly pairs with the new breed of rally-ready short travel 29ers. The FulFilll air spring is volume adjustable for control over progression, while its independent negative chamber produces a supple initial stroke that common self-equalizing air springs can’t touch. This pairing of tunability means you no longer have to concede comfort for capability; small bump performance for big-hit support. Consistent and exact damping is handled by the EssenTTial damper that features twin-tube architecture and a low-friction, low-pressure floating piston that outperforms and outlasts the typical bladder-based design.

A brawny chassis, purpose-built spring and damper, and a directive to charge any trail are what make the lightweight Ribbon SL definitively downcountry.

MRP Ribbon SL
MRP Ribbon SL Details
Stanchion Size: 35mm
Travel: 120 or 130mm (Internally adjustable to 110mm)
Weight: 3.95 lbs. / 1.79 kg
Spring system: FulFill independent positive and negative chamber system.
External Adjustments: 8-position low-speed compression and rebound.
Internal Adjustments: Travel (110-130mm), spring volume with Huck Puck™ system
Offset: 46 OR 51mm
Decal Options: Nine to choose from
US MSRP: $899.95
Product Page: Ribbon SL

Ribbon SL decal options:


Learn More: MRP Ribbon SL


163 Comments

  • + 100
 Blah Blah, Marketing blurb, *down country* blurb blah *aspirational* yawn, fad, new phrase...marketing BS
  • + 54
 But it's a way of life
  • + 124
 personally I think the sarcasm it's written with is actually marketing genius, wholly pointed at creating a stir in the comments section
  • + 24
 @sewer-rat: nailed it. If you know how MRP guys are...
  • + 20
 This post needs more giant closeups of the decals.
  • + 10
 @acali: Thank god there are 9 decal options. Of which 2.5 are white and 2 are blue.
  • + 83
 @sewer-rat: how dare you accuse me of simply stirring the pot, especially on International Downcountry Day of all days. A day when we shouldn’t be arguing in the comments, but rather we should be figuring out how our current bikes are holding us back and how we can justify new bike and parts purchases to ourselves or significant others. Get in the spirit, bro!
  • + 9
 If they made it for a 30" wheel I might be more interested, that way I can mullet but keep the 29 out back.
  • + 1
 I guess the term "all-mountain" never existed...... Well its better than all the kids saying, "LET'S GO ENDURO TODAY!" "WHAT ENDURO BIKE SHOULD I GET!?" "ARE THESE PADS GOOD FOR ENDURO-ING!?"
  • - 16
flag endurocat (Jul 10, 2019 at 6:42) (Below Threshold)
 Pinkbike is pushing so hard for this Stupid name to catch on . It's sad that companies are on the brink of failure because of this trends like this one that they will produce anything even if they risk going bankrupt.
  • - 11
flag GlassGuy (Jul 10, 2019 at 6:51) (Below Threshold)
 @Lagr1980: so you're saying the MRP guys are using this sarcasm in marketing so that the few people that actually "know" them can get the joke?? If this is being silly then they should be a bit more obvious to appeal to a larger group of people. I had to stop reading
  • - 1
 @endurocat: so you are saying I should stock up on MRP chain guides now?
  • - 5
flag wibblywobbly (Jul 10, 2019 at 7:01) (Below Threshold)
 @GlassGuy: this isn’t a very welcoming and accessible attitude towards new mountain bikers. We need to grow the sport and a fork with more than zero adjustments will be difficult for beginners to set up.
  • + 11
 @GlassGuy: it was pretty obvious sarcasm to me. "florida man doesn't get the joke"
  • + 2
 dey did it on purpose, and dey got it from dey momma
  • + 2
 Marketing 101
  • + 2
 @GlassGuy: read above. Somebody in the comment section owns this post.h ahaha. Use the hashtags accodingly Mr Sears ! Great video and I bet this fork rocks !
  • + 1
 @NoahColorado: yeah but does Randy downcountry?
  • + 6
 @acali: Only need red white and blue stickers; America invented downcountry.
  • + 3
 You all think your mad about the marketing, just wait till you get passed by a dude on a 100mm travel bike through the gnar. Thanks MRP!
  • - 9
flag GlassGuy (Jul 10, 2019 at 8:59) (Below Threshold)
 @arrowheadrush: Yep...we're all the same down here. Trust me, I have no pride in this state and the majority of the people here...including the vast amount of Canadians that flood my streets and beaches. Smile
Good for you that you get the "joke". Video shows a guy pushing for a Strava KOM, riding a lame trail...seems pretty serious to me. They could just say..."hey, we created a short travel yet beefy fork so you can rip around on your mountain bike and have a good time(or be a race guy and get your KOM)"
  • + 6
 @GlassGuy: lame trail? Joe's Ridge is rated 4.75/5 on Trailforks. I wanna see your trails!
  • + 7
 @GlassGuy: Joe's Ridge is friggin sweet, not the gnarliest thing ever but tons of fun and far from lame. Anyone who has ridden it and says they don't like it is bro-signaling and lying.
  • + 3
 @boozed: I went enduroing last week, and this weekend Im going downcountry-ing.
  • + 3
 @NoahColorado: meh.

I’m holding out for the “Down-Duro” version of the Ribbon.
  • + 2
 @sewer-rat: except I got board of reading it before l even got to the part about their fork. ????
  • + 1
 @NoahColorado: I just think you're a brit with a dry sense of humor in disguise,
  • - 1
 Enduro actually is a good term to describe a riding style. I know different types of riders who ride the same trail system. Some ride flat out the entire time and rarely stop for anything. Others pedal slowly up hill, rest and then blast downhill as fast as possible. Same trails, different riding style. Enduro perfectly communicates the riding style of the second group in this example.
  • + 0
 @dfiler: The term Enduro was created only to describe a racing format. All mountain is a term that's been around much longer and has always perfectly described this style of riding. Quit being silly.
  • + 1
 @scott-townes: when saying all mountain, few people understand that a distinction is being made about how hard you push on climbs vs on descents. I’m sorry that other people don’t interpret all mountain the same way you do. To many people, all mountain just means more gnarly trails than xc. It’s silly that you’re so worked up about it.
  • + 1
 'member the term bike magazine tried for about 8 months to shove down our throat. black diamond?
  • + 2
 @dfiler: All mountain simply means you ride everything from XC to DH trails with one rig... its not hard to understand. It was the term always used for mid-travel rigs that were designed to handle everything before the enduro race format existed. Its silly you have to adopt a term out of context to describe something that already exists. This is why the term "enduro" to describe a trail or a ride is most popular among those who only started MTBing in the past few years, its ignorance. Its all they know. You don't ride trails in timed DH sections and in block timed uphill sections on a normal ride, do you?
  • + 59
 I personally prefer crosshill to downcountry. Hopefully mrp will make a fork dor that too
  • + 2
 I prefer eDowncountry.
  • + 47
 I prefer Robert Downcountry Jr.
  • + 67
 We’re actually focused on the “aroundhill” segment for our next fork. It’s like downhill, but you go around all the technical parts and trail features. It seems very popular everywhere I go.
  • - 24
flag youknowitsus (Jul 10, 2019 at 7:19) (Below Threshold)
 lame ass joke guy. gtfo and do vr
  • + 9
 @scott-townes: have you seen the new mtb film, “No Downcountry for Old Men”?
  • + 5
 @nyhc00: Nah, but have you seen Eastbound and Downcountry? Its a hilarious show.
  • + 3
 Downcountry is mountain biking's version of "felt cute, might delete later"
  • + 38
 All in favor of adopting the term “Downcountry” if and only if the second “o” is removed?
  • + 4
 Can the riders then be "downcounts", with the second "o" removed?
  • + 26
 The most lifestyle fork I've ever seen
  • + 19
 leaning into the downcountry marketing, bold strategy. Although the Tomac-era paragraph did make me want to go out and ride my bike, so they did something right
  • + 30
 Pinkbike please make a Downcountry tag so that companies don't have to explicitly write it in the header. Thanks for them.
  • + 3
 @EnduroManiac: I just spit out my coffee laughing at this, hahaha. Well done!
  • + 1
 @EnduroManiac: I should be colorful, maybe in the colors presented for the decals on the MRP fork...
  • + 16
 Downcountry and keto diets. Well memed.
  • + 8
 I should have included something about how it allows you choose lines with the precision of a grape surgeon.
  • + 9
 I understand this video was released by MRP, but generally speaking Pinkbike has been pushing the adoption of this “down country” marketing BS by using the term in a lot of their videos. Every time Levy uses the term he puts weird emphasis on it and I don’t know why, but I find it irritating.
  • + 14
 How is the term 'downcountry' more marketing BS than the term 'enduro'?
  • + 5
 @Muckal: you need to have "downcountry" races to begin with..coming soon..
  • + 3
 @Muckal: There was a bike called the “enduro” long before they decided to refer to multi stage trail riding/ racing as enduro.
  • + 8
 I've said it before and I'll say it again: Mike Levy is the most influential person in mountain biking today. We have him to thank for the recent massive trends of downcountry, short-travel 29ers, water bottles, fanny packs, and soon "trail rated" seat packs.
  • + 2
 @Lagr1980: it's called Super D
  • + 1
 @dynamatt: there was a class of motorcycles long before Specialized made bikes. Real motorcycles with gas engines. So?
  • + 1
 @Lagr1980: so...downieville classic and all the old school point-to-point over-that-mountain biking races and rides from the early days?
  • + 9
 I see a TON of hate in these comments. Knock that shit off and go ride your bikes. MRP is the best suspension I’ve ever rode and one of the best companies to work with. If y’all are getting tore up over a little marketing, you’ve got bigger problems. Keep on keepin on MRP! @NoahColorado
  • + 6
 While I'm not against the term necessarily, I think "downcountry" embodies what most mountain bikers I know are. Most people I know aren't park rats, or endurbros, they just like to go out and go fast. Try to drop your friends on the descents AND climbs, and have fun. I think the genre of downcountry lends itself to this format, so I sorta like it. If you haven't rode a true "downcountry" rig, do it. You'll be amazed.
  • + 0
 wait...you mean mtn biking? What is a "true downcountry rig"... Is it a....mountain bike?
So I have to ride a certain bike in order to fit in this sub genre of me riding my bike on dirt?? Wait, what if I ride my 160 travel bike on a "true DH" course...or if I ride my 130 bike through trail but then onto the streets to do some urban assault...am I breaking laws?? Will my bikes explode because they aren't adhering to their proper label and "intention"?
We're going to need patches like the Cub Scouts to signify what classification we belong to.
And wait, if I meet a girl and she asks me what things I like to do and I tell her I ride "downcountry"....I'm pretty sure I'll then have to explain to her that I actually ride bikes in the dirt, and then she'll think I'm a douche for trying to seem cool with a nonsensical term.
I miss the category of "all mountain"...that covered all bases....the bike rides everywhere!
  • + 11
 Radical idea: what about the term "mountain biking"?
  • + 2
 @PeaFunk: that's a good one too. But of all the extra terms given I most appreciate "all mountain"
  • + 1
 I'm throwing my Ripley out and buying one of these things, wow!
  • + 1
 @GlassGuy: I kinda agree, but the term all mountain was mostly used for larger bikes. The 'downcountry' trend is kinds the opposite direction. I have a 160/150mm bike that pedals well and I feel like I ride anywhere including uphill hard. It's an all mountain bike. I also have a 120mm xc bike with a 66 degree head angle. It's a rocketship uphill and is capable downhill, it's attacking the same problem from a different angle it's kinda a downcountry bike.
  • + 1
 @jordanaustino: yes exactly. You will never get the same sporty/playful feel from a 160mm bike that you do from your 100mm short travel rig that's raked out. Regardless of how well the big bike pedals, or how you do 50 mile Backcountry epics on the Enduro rig...
  • + 4
 Swapped my Fox 34 Fit4 for one of these last month, lost weight and gained stiffness. It feels way better than the fox too, mostly because of the adjustable negative spring. Reminds me a lot of my DVO Diamond with less adjustments to worry about to get it dialled. #downcountry for the win!
  • + 3
 I don't really get why everyone is so angry (edit - oh, forgot pinkbike comments...). An XC full suss bike that's designed for fun, not to be raced.... It's a definite trend that manufacturers are building bikes for, and there for it WILL be given a name. You don't have to use it, but at least it makes it clear to everyone what the product is intended for.
  • - 2
 All these names are confusing to me, a new mountain biker. So confusing I think I am going to quit and take up rollerblading. Thank you bike industry.
  • + 3
 Sounds like you’re describing a trail bike.
  • + 5
 I have one and it is the best fork I've ever used, hands down. Plus Noah has been amazing in helping me get it dialed. MRP is the Randy of bike companies.
  • + 6
 patented by Levy industries
  • + 5
 Seriously, how is the sarcasm not readily apparent. Watch the vid. This is hilarious. I want one.
  • + 4
 Earning a STRAVA KOM while you constantly have to wait for the camera-guy to set up his stuff in the next corner, huh huh
  • + 23
 We had sixty camera guys. Huge budget.
  • + 1
 @NoahColorado: Really?! Then that's some great riding. Maybe you should have emphasized that fact in the video. Cheers.
  • + 5
 @NoahColorado: I almost spit out my coffee at that...
  • + 1
 @j-boom: Whoosh!
  • + 4
 MRP Bike, can my 27.5 bike be called Downcountry? Or is that reserved for 29ers?
  • + 1
 Its 120/130 with 2.4 or 2.6 tires, dropper, carbon errythang, can do enduro lines.
  • + 1
 Separate negative and positive air springs is the ultimate way to set up your fork.
I should run twice the pressure in the negative spring yes? Say 150 psi in the negative and 50 psi in the positive to give me moar supports.
Then I twiddle all the dials while I'm riding untill it feels good.
  • + 3
 I am still waiting for the "Bro-Country" fork with Tacoma colored lowers...
  • + 1
 Cement fork FTW!
  • + 3
 Funny read and video. Thanks MRP for making solid products and keeping the fun between the thighs!
  • + 1
 If that's not "trail riding", what the f*ck is? I ride like the examples given, but it's on a 160\160mm bike. Is that downcountry, since it doesn't suck the life out of me on the climbs?
  • + 3
 Downcountry is to the MTB community, as Duck Lips is to the Selfie community...
  • + 3
 It's only about 115g lighter than the full size Ribbon, doesn't seem like much.
  • + 4
 MRP forks are the cat's pyjamas
  • + 3
 I'm just here to watch @NoahColorado ride...
  • + 2
 MRP Ribbon SL, cool downcountry fork. Strava-bro KOM breaking marketing, priceless.
  • + 2
 Looks like the dropouts got put on the wrong side of a Manitou... I'd ride it.
  • + 3
 Downcountry forks are for degens from upcountry
  • + 3
 At least Noah didn't skid...
  • + 3
 Dawn patrol at 18rd is way better than standing at a computer in Denver
  • + 1
 I find this hard to believe. The KOM was 4`05 but the video was only 2`05...but in reality it was sub 1`40... I say it was a fix.... Or shadey marketing..
  • + 5
 We didn't show the WHOLE thing. I got the KOM the day before we filmed, BTW. www.strava.com/segments/20925786
  • + 1
 I didn't see that this was a press release when I started reading and assumed it was Mike Levy. I got as far as the second paragraph before I figured it out.
  • + 3
 clickbait title pinkbike's style
  • + 3
 Bro, that guy didn't look out for hikers or hourseesss
  • + 12
 Didn't have to, they could smell my Stetson cologne from a mile away and got outta the way. Stetson, the official cologne for downcountry men.™
  • + 3
 Word on the street is Randy uses Stetson as chain lube. The secret to the Ribbon SL is Stetson is used for the damper fluid, shhhh.
  • + 3
 @aquanut: You're confused, we Stetson for the bath oil. For the damper fluid we use fresh Copenhagen spit. Yeet!
  • + 2
 Doesn't the regular Ribbon adjust from 140, 150, 160 down to 120MM? And weigh 1/2 pound more?
  • + 5
 Thats kind of the point. If you don't need the travel or extra weight, its gone.
  • + 0
 if it takes 3 paragraphs to explain a new marketing name, you're doing it wrong. "I didn't have time to write it short so I wrote it long" comes to mind.
  • + 2
 I'm waiting for the Upcity fork, myself. Downcountry is so 2019.5.
  • + 2
 Followed by the Uptown for 2020, then the Uptown Funk with an extra 5 mm of travel when you wanna go big.
  • - 1
 looks like a mountain bike suspension fork for mountain bike trails. Too bad it isn't multi purpose. And huck puck is a hell of a word for a plastic reducer lol. Jargon blargon starvin marvin.
  • + 3
 F*** Strava
  • + 0
 Unashamedly advertorial. Wow Pinkbike, wow. The Apple has fallen far, far, far, from the tree.

Anyone want to setup a real MTB website for real riders? Not brands.
  • + 3
 It's almost like MRP were the ones who posted this!
  • + 2
 Downcountry dentists unite!
  • + 3
 #dentistcountry
  • + 1
 @excavator666: all dentists i know are not downcountry -dont wanna mess up those precious hands. seriously as a dentist i would care more too.
  • + 2
 Bros, I heard this set the KOM at, "Joe's Ridge", so there.
  • + 1
 I need this fark, I need this fark, I need this fark
oh, something is wrong!
Am ei Enduro ???
  • + 1
 Whistler: Pre-ride before you freeride.

MRP Marketing Intern: Leap before you look~
  • + 2
 Fork looks good. Marketing spiel is utter bollocks.
  • + 12
 It's satirical. I cant be mad at you though, you're english.
  • - 5
flag GlassGuy (Jul 10, 2019 at 6:57) (Below Threshold)
 @schofell84: How is it "satirical" and how do you know it is? If it is they should be a bit more obvious so it doesn't seem so...not satirical
  • + 9
 @GlassGuy: it’s clearly meant to be a funny write up/light hearted gesture towards the people who the fork is meant for - people who who don’t think themselves or their bike too seriously. Which obviously isn’t you. Downcountry from the beginning was a funny jab at the crazy number of ways we have tried to describe “mountain biking.” Truth is everyone has a very different idea of that and this is just one more way to laugh at it.

Chill out. It’s Pinkbike. Laugh a little.
  • - 2
 @HurricaneCycles: Hmmm..the guy in the video is riding for a Strava KOM....that's "light hearted"?
I've stopped using Strava and riding with Strava people because that takes all the fun out of riding!
Thanks for clearing things up for me and letting me know I'm missing the point
  • + 4
 @GlassGuy: did you miss that part about taking yourself too seriously? Are you too cool for strava?

I use strava and find it fun to compete with my friends on. It’s not world champs. It’s just fun. I don’t even care if I have KOM unless it’s my buddy I’m competing for it with.

Downcountry FTW. Chill out. Charge hard but don’t get you panties in a wad.
  • + 1
 @GlassGuy: Don't know why you got downvoted, I agree. Strava KOM dude is literally a world class athlete. Consumers get f*cked by this shit all the time. There's probably a figurative formula 1 team behind the best rider ever available. I think the point you're missing is nobody really cares, and that makes it funny. In history (early 1900's), hairy people were put in the circus, they were, "better"; but nobody gives a f*ck, I think that's the point you're missing.
  • + 3
 Fuckin' degens...
  • + 1
 @mikelevy, input into the marketing... Branching out?
  • + 1
 Can you downcountry in upstate?
  • - 3
 Interested in the fork. Not interested in the PR or all this bull in the comments.

Downcountry is an apt term for what a lot of us do, especially folks who live in places where trails are out and back climb-to-descent. However I agree that we've already named this style of riding "trail". Kind of like "all mountain" came before "enduro" when you sacrificed climbing prowess for the ability to ride any obstacle on the way back down. As for Levy's appropriation of the term and the subsequent permeation of this "new" style of bike? I don't care.

As suspension design promotes geometry change, the trail bike has evolved. "Trail" bikes today can do so much more than "trail" bikes of a decade ago. Do we need to change the name? Probably not. But this is the bike industry...(sigh) If it will sell a fraction of a percent more product, its time for a "new" category. I just care that the suspension and geometry work together to make my ride faster, more efficient, and more fun.

IMO, the bike industry has maintained the same rate of progress that we've seen for the last 20 years, and I'll continue to upgrade my gear every 3-4 years to reap the benefits, regardless of whatever name you slap on the newest product.
  • + 3
 You seem lost
  • + 1
 Why no ramp control cart?
  • + 2
 Looks like a Levy.
  • + 1
 What were they thinking with the music, gawd
  • + 2
 "Up Slalom"
  • + 1
 Up, down..boring. I'm looking for a Sidehill fork
  • + 1
 So “downcountry” requires you to leave the saddle up on downhills too?
  • + 1
 Downcountry causes uplunch
  • + 1
 ordered a shock from MRP in April... still haven't gotten it....
  • + 1
 Wheels left the ground, that's too enduro for my downcountry.
  • + 1
 Looking at that trail he would’ve been better off with a gravel bike.
  • + 1
 friggin doubt it
  • + 0
 Truth.
  • + 2
 29er jump fork...hmmm
  • + 2
 #LevyCountry
  • + 1
 and the link is borked. well done team!
  • + 1
 Sounds like we doubled back to freeride! Viva La 90's!
  • + 1
 "downcountry" in dutch is Nederlandse Wink
  • + 1
 Is this really "New" though? It's been out for over a year.
  • + 1
 Downcountry is ridiculous!
  • + 0
 I dunno, looked more like upcountry with all that nasty pedaling. :/
  • - 1
 Down Country is the stupidest expression EVER and it started on this site! Its EXTREMELY stupid!
  • + 2
 No, u
  • + 1
 North Downs Country FTW!
  • + 1
 what's a downcountry?
  • + 14
 The Netherlands
  • + 1
 @iamamodel: They're not *that* depressed.
  • + 0
 gross.
  • - 2
 Maybe if they spent less on marketing they wouldnt have to ask insane amounts of money for their chain guides..
  • + 2
 If they spent less on marketing they could afford the front part of their arch
  • + 1
 @TrevZ: if they spent less money on marketing we wouldn't even get the pictures of the decals...
  • + 0
 Too many words.
  • - 1
 TRAIL. Stop the DC BS.
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