Bike Check: Brook Macdonald's New Mondraker Summum

Sep 29, 2020
by James Smurthwaite  

After his horrific injury at World Champs last year, there were times when it was feared Brook Macdonald might not even ride a bike again. Feeding off his determination to get riding again, he's dedicated his life to recovery and just over a year after breaking his back, Brook will be back racing again at Crankworx this week and then will be thrust into the World Champs arena next week in Leogang

Mondraker released this new version of the Summum at the start of September, but it shouldn't actually be that new to Brook. We first spotted him testing on an aluminum prototype of the bike in Lenzerheide last year and then we saw further team testing on the frame in Lousa over the winter too. When the bike was finally revealed, it was not a huge overhaul from Brook's previous bike but it was now aluminum only and redesigned around 29" wheels.

With his season disrupted by recovery and COVID, Brook and his mechanic Ben are still fine tuning his set up for the year, but he's been spending some intensive time in Lenzerheide trying to get it dialed before he returns to racing this week. Let's get into the details of Brook's new ride.


Frame: Mondraker Summum, Large
Shock: Fox DHX2 coil, 550 spring
Fork: Fox 40, 86 psi fork with 4 spacers
Wheels: e13 LG1 race carbon, 29" front and rear.
Tires: Michellin DH34, 21.5psi front, 23psi rear
Drivetrain: Shimano Saint
Brakes: Shimano XTR 4 piston
Cockpit: Renthal, 775mm bar
More info:

No carbon here. Mondraker went with an aluminum-only frame at the request of its racers who found the metal bikes more responsive.

The reach has grown by 30mm on each size on the new Mondraker. Brook's mechanic tells us his geometry is a bit different from stock as he keeps the 63° head tube angle from last year's bike vs 63.5° on the new stock bike. Brook's BB is also 2mm lower than the stock bike at 348mm.

Chainstays are adjustable and Brook's magic number is 450mm.

Brook's Fox 40 fork is set up with 86 psi and 4 spacers.

Shimano 4 pot XTR brakes provide the stopping power for Brook.

The rest of the groupset is old reliable Saint.

Brook's bars are cut down to 775mm and he stands at 1m75cm (5'9").

A textured SDG saddle offers a bit more grip.

Brook might be hunting down a bigger mud guard when he sees the weather forecast for Innsbruck and Leogang.

bigquotesWe are still on the development process after Brook’s injury. To be honest seeing Brook on the bike this last few days, I can tell you that we are going in the right direction.Ben, Mechanic

The Bulldog is back!


  • 138 0
 This dude needs an "S" tattooed across his chest. Maybe a cape as part of his riding kit. To come back from that and walk is miraculous, but to be riding at a world class level again...incredible!
  • 55 0
 I hope the dude podiums worlds. He’s a fighter that goes hard all the time.
  • 57 0
 No Capes! Do you remember Thunderhead? Tall, storm powers, nice man, good with kids...
  • 4 0
 @dockboy: maybe a bat symbol then. "Every cape has to have a release mechanism." -Bruce
  • 10 1
 @dockboy: Capes and bikes are bad news....I wore one as part of a Halloween costume and my then flames painted retro cruiser bike became part of this ensemble. In my mind the vision of my costumed look, cape flowing behind me while cruising down the street seemed very very cool! Jump to reality and if you aren't going 20mph the cape wraps into the rear hub, or even bundles into the rear wheel, causing either sudden pull on your shoulders/neck or stopping the bike completely. And combine that with being quite intoxicated the reaction time is greatly reduced. I woke up the next morning with a cracked knee riding whatsoever for almost three months. Life lesson.
  • 1 0
 @GlassGuy: When the hell does The Bulldog go under 20 mph for that to matter anyway?!
  • 1 0
 @BaldBilly: One second slow down in a rock garden...cape loses lift and drops into cassette or wheel...drop off the rocks, rear wheel locks up....Boom. Cape no good. One time was enough for me, ha ha
  • 58 7
 No carbon here. Mondraker went with an aluminum-only frame at the request of its racers who found the metal bikes more responsive. No don't publish that please. All of the idiots are going to figure out that aluminum is better and then it's going to be more expensive . Just let them think that carbon is the best.
  • 15 0
 Yet word is the team is loving the e*thirteen carbon rims.
  • 20 0
 @DubC: yeah, probably cause they are more responsive ?! Big Grin
  • 11 0
 comparing materials for different components isnt really valid - shall they supply them with carbon tyres too? :')
  • 5 0
 carbon frames can deliver a better rider quality if done right IMO. sounds to me that the carbon summum had too much compliance for the team riders.
  • 7 0
 @striveCF15: I think the big thing with aluminum in DH racing are all the custom setups the riders want, and aluminum allows the company to produce these parts easily. Commencal has said this is why they stick to only aluminum, so they can refresh their designs at a quicker pace. I think we'll see more aluminum everywhere in the future now that we're all geo and kinematics nerds, but for sure in DH racing.
  • 3 0
 I've always thought that aluminum had better vibration dampening over carbon, but have no science to back it. There was a video of a weight dropping on a fork showing how strong carbon was over aluminum. What I took away from the video was yes the carbon was stronger and lighter but acted like a spring. The weight bounced longer. As where the aluminum was weaker and heavier but the weight came to a stop faster. Hope that makes sense?
  • 3 0
 @coletrane-mtb: yeah alloy (aluminium) is better in my opinion for DH racing because of the responses I have ridden both bikes in a carbon and a alloy- specialized demo 8 and the alloy for sure felt more responsive. although their will always be a market for carbon in the Xc/ trail/ enduro world because of the decreased weight. this is just my opinion but the stats speak for themselves 6/8 races last year were won with an alloy bike ( for DH)
  • 1 0
 I get that. I personally don’t like the feel of aluminium frames, they feel rigid and harsh to me.

My trail bike is carbon and it does feel too light over roots and rocks, where as my hardtail is aluminium and I find it sits well across rough stuff but kills my arms way quicker.

Still haven’t been able to recreate the feel of my old steel Cove though.
  • 1 0
 @coletrane-mtb: I believe the reason commencal does it is more to do with environmental impact rather than geometry changes. Max commencal is very strongly spoken about not leaving a big carbon footprint.
  • 1 0
 @jamesroxby: Vittoria tyres??
  • 1 0
 It's just a question of profit margin, not material property. Building a carbon frame is a much more expensive and slow process.
Has the price dropped down since they moved to aluminium?
The same story about Specialized
Maybe next year they will release a "special" full carbon version for merely 10000 dollars/euros
  • 29 0
 Je t'aime
  • 21 10
 As good as Saint parts are (not a fan of the m820 brakes...gasp), it would be cool to see a revision of the group. Even if it is just a graphic change.
  • 19 0
 Or at least drop the price if we are going to get the same parts each year.
  • 7 0
 Signature: brainwashed consumers
  • 40 0
 "Even if it is just a graphic change." Why, to render older parts obsolete because everyone wants the "new" stuff?

I get that companies want to pursue this strategy, but it kinda blows my mind that consumers demand it for themselves...
  • 17 0
 If it ain't broke don't fix it!
  • 23 0
 @seismicninja this is everything that’s wrong with consumerism. A great product is a great product. Embrace the fact it doesn’t need to change and accept that it’s right to pay a fair price for it.

End the obsession with new new new and the devaluing of anything older.
  • 3 0
 @threehats: agreed. I think this is what's so interesting about the Saint line, it's been holding it down in the gravity world for a long time with minimal changes. If I was building a DH bike right now it would be hard to stray from something so well proven.
  • 12 0
 awesome to see him back in the saddle!
  • 7 0
 Is nobody going to comment about Ben the mechanic's eharmony-ready photo? That moustache tho...
The bulldog will be screamed at the whole way down his world championship run, fair play to the man
  • 4 0
 Dude’s rocking a more sophisticated crocs and socks and jeans cut-off look. This is a Tinder photo, he’s not looking for anything long term.
  • 2 0
 @KiwiXC: not crocs, just stocks and socks. the OG pairing.
  • 9 0
 So good to see him back and ripping. get sum Bulldog!
  • 10 4
 Does anyone else find it a little weird that PB kept calling it a Fox 49, even though it is a 2021 40?
  • 28 0
 at least its not called the 36 26 831
  • 2 0
  • 2 0
 @wideopennewzealand: Just DJ things lol
  • 1 0
 @wideopennewzealand: I mean I'd take one of those
  • 3 0
 @wideopennewzealand: red beans and rice didn't miss her!! Oh wait...
  • 2 0
 Yeah, so the new 29er is now just a 40, not a 49?
  • 3 0
 @Waldon83: they're preparing for killing off 27.5". Everything twentyniner is just called the regular name.
  • 8 1
 Fox needs to make those white lowers available to buy
  • 5 0
 They were
  • 1 0
 you mean grey?
  • 1 0
 @NorCalNomad: While Fox calls it "battleship grey" they are pretty much just white.
  • 1 0
 @leon-forfar: they look more grey in person than they do in the pictures.
  • 1 0
 @hmstuna: I have one on my Dh bike, looks white to me when sitting next to my grey Bronson.
  • 1 0
 @leon-forfar: I've seen it on a session with white decaling and in comparison to that it looks pretty grey
  • 5 0
 The Bulldog sweats the deets. I/2 a psi, 2mm off the bb , .5 degree off the ha and 5mm off the bar. Dialed!!
  • 4 0
 happy to see the Sunday, but WAY STOKED for Brook Macdonald!!
  • 3 0
 Why do mondrakers look so looooong? I love the way they look, but man are they long.
  • 2 0
 Probably 1 part Loooong and another part skinny tubes adding to the optics
  • 7 0
 they look long because they are. lol. ride is ethereal.
  • 1 0
 @conoat: Is it really? Never been on one but would love to try.
  • 8 4
 @youknowitsus: I ride a Foxy. came off a Pivot Firebird. easily 2x better bike. And not in the, "yeah, this bike is a lot better" kind of legit double the bike. Like going from a Huffy to an entry level Stumpjumper or something. Quantum leap in ride quality, fit and finish, performance, etc. It's a different sport on a Mondraker.
  • 3 0
 Because it is long. Mondraker was one of the OG forward geometry companies. Fabians MSA Summon had a 59°HTA near the end of his DH career.
  • 2 0
 @gonecoastal: in reach terms this is the first long mondraker dh bike. The old bike was actually pretty small, but just had a massive range of HA adjustment. 61-65
  • 1 0
 Yep. They look long because they are. I ride a 2014 medium size Foxy and the reach is 480mm, soo... And also the top tubes are usually quite skinny.
  • 3 0
 648mm BB height? That dont seem right.
  • 2 0
 Super Boost BB
  • 1 0
 @kusa: Shhh! It's prototype
  • 2 0
 Man brook is an absolute beast. To come back from that injury in that kind of fashion is so inspireing. So stocked for him.
  • 1 0
 So Mondraker is setting a new head angle trend again by steepening it up :-) ? Revolutionary !
Mad respekt for the Bulldog. Bulldogs are my favorite animals :-)
  • 1 0
 Those RRP ProGuards actually work really well. I have one that lives on my XC bike year-round even though it's dry af in the summer.
  • 1 0
 Very "common mortal" tyre pressures, specially for such an aggressive charger. Interesting
  • 1 0
 Those Michelin tires are quite stiff i believe, never tried one soo i can't say for sure.
  • 1 0
 @c-radicallis: heavy as f*ck too so they better be stiff.
  • 1 0
 @Mondbiker: and yet, some dumb part of me is dying to try them on my enduro bike
  • 1 0
 No water bottle bosses!

Best wishes Brook! Stoked to see your back (and you're back).
  • 1 0
 Glad the signature hump is gone It's a smacking looking rig
  • 1 0
 Summon. They should have named it 'Phoenix'
  • 2 0
 Looks like Cube two15 Big Grin
  • 2 0
 Although the suspension design is completely different...
  • 1 0
 So they fit 29 in 27’5 frame?
  • 2 0
 bike looks so sick
  • 2 0
 Oh my days!
  • 1 0
 Nobody is talking about the fucking small wheel at the back
  • 1 0
 Iv had my summum for 5 years id never ride anything else amazing bike
  • 1 2
 Damn Brook has got a sponsor and a new awesome bike. I am so stoked, more so than when I heard he could walk again.
  • 1 0
 "Summum, get it right."
  • 1 0
 The bull dog is back Big Grin
  • 2 3
 He never left Mondraker did he? What are you on about?
  • 10 2
 He went to GT then back to Mondraker
  • 5 0
 @CantQuitCartel: Don’t forget his time on Trek...
  • 1 0
 @Skootur: oh yeah I had completely forgotten about that.

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