Bike Check: Danny Hart's Saracen Ariel LTX Carbon - Ard Rock Festival 2018

Aug 3, 2018
by Tristan Tinn  

It's Friday the 3rd of August 2018 at the Santa Cruz Ard Rock Festival, supported by Maxxis and Camelbak 2018. World Cup downhill rider Danny Hart is a relative local to these hills, hailing from Redcar UK. While this may not be his debut appearance at an enduro, it is certainly one of Danny's first high key enduros. Any household name downhill rider making at an appearance on the enduro scene is sure to draw attention, so we decided to catch up with Danny and see what he was using to take on the challenge.

Danny has moved teams onto the UK based Madison Saracen team at the start of this season, so for the Ard Rock Danny is riding a 2018 Saracen Ariel LTXc 650B, size medium. The frame provides 165mm travel on the rear delivered by a Fox Float X2, up front Danny is running 180mm travel Fox Factory 36 fork. When questioned on suspension specifics Danny stated that the bike was set up inline with his downhill bike, something that mechanic Dave Garland and Danny have been working hard on to perfect with fixed telemetry units previously seen online.

Saracen Ariel LTXc
Danny Hart // Madison Saracen
Age: 26
Hometown: Redcar
Height: 5'9" / 175 cm
Weight: 145 lb / 66 kg
Instagram: @dannyhart1

Danny's Ariel has gearing delivered by Shimano XTR Di2 11 speed, with a 46t sprocket on the rear cassette. The rest of the drivetrain was also XTR, along with a black and gold set of Crankbrothers Mallet DH 11 pedals. Danny runs a DT Swiss EX1501 650B wheel set with Maxxis DHR II 27.5x 2.40 in 3C compound, the bike had a DH casing up front with a Double Down on the rear which was unusual and unexplained, perhaps an anomaly.

Braking is taken care of by a pair of XTR brakes, with 180mm rotors front and rear. The bike was finished off with Pro finishing kit, a 100mm drop Kashima Fox Transfer post and soft ODI lock on grips. A Mudhugger front mudguard is also fitted to the bike.

Saracen Ariel LTXc

Saracen Ariel LTXc
Model Name Details
Frame: Saracen Ariel LTXc
Shock: Fox Float X2 165mm
Fork: Fox Factory 36 180mm
Wheels: DT Swiss EX1501 650B
Tires: Maxxis DHR II 27.5 x 2.4 3C DD/DH casing
Drivetrain: Shimano XTR Di2 11 speed
Brakes: Shimano XTR
Cockpit: Pro Bar and Stem
Size: Medium
More info:

Saracen Ariel LTXc
Saracen Ariel LTXc
Shimano XTR 11spd Di2 for the gearing

Saracen Ariel LTXc
Pro Bar and Stem

Saracen Ariel LTXc
Saracen Ariel LTXc
Fox providing the suspension, with an Float X2 on the rear and a Factory 36 180mm up front

Saracen Ariel LTXc
Danny also opts for soft collared ODI lock on grips

Saracen Ariel LTXc
Crankbrothers Mallet DH 11 pedals in black and gold

Saracen Ariel LTXc
Danny rides a size Medium and stands at 5'9

Saracen Ariel LTXc
Saracen Ariel LTXc
Maxxis DHR II tires - Danny runs 24psi in the front and 27psi in the rear

Saracen Ariel LTXc
Hopefully the Mudhugger won't come into play this weekend

Saracen Ariel LTXc

Saracen Ariel LTXc
Best of luck this weekend Danny!

MENTIONS: @crankbrothers / @SaracenBikes / @dannyhart / @Maxxis / @tris400d / @foxracingshox / @shimano

Author Info:
tris400d avatar

Member since Mar 10, 2007
54 articles

  • 48 0
 OMG those pictures of him smiling all decked out in helmet and camera, you just have to smile right back. Have you ever pulled up to a stop light and gotten SMOKED by a Honda Civic with rusty wheels or gotten your @$$ kicked by the kid that won the science fair? That must be what its like.
  • 19 0
 MaxxGrip front, MaxxTerra rear, hence the casings.
  • 3 0
 Yep can’t get maxxterra in dh casings obviously put rolling speed over protection.
  • 3 0
 Good point. I was thinking maybe dh Carl sing front and dd rear with a tire liner
  • 2 0
 Dh casing also gives better small bump dampening and less tyre roll, giving significantly more grip amd control over a dd casing.
  • 25 0
 @schralpknobslikecornonthecob: Are you the newest omnipresent a*shole on pb?
  • 1 0
 @ctd07: ^^ This... some poeple just love the DH casing feel up to front. That said, there is a DHF 2.5 WT EXO in MaxxGRIPP compound.... goes nice up front and lighter if you can get away with it..
  • 1 0
 @Lagr1980: yeah I’ve got one had it over a year and haven’t put a hole in it yet. Over 2.5 as well if that floats your boat.
  • 1 0
 You'd think Danny could get any casing and compound combination he wanted...
  • 1 2
 @Tinga: I doubt he’d have asked for a maxx Terra dh tyre though. It’s only the ardrock after all.
  • 1 0
 @thenotoriousmic: you ridden Ard Rock? Maxxis didn’t have a van at the end of stage 3 because it was smooth. You’d think they scattered razor blades before the event!
  • 2 0
 @woodyc: I meant Maxxis are going to make a max terra dh tyre just for danny hart to ride at the ard rock.
  • 9 0
 I am pretty sure Danny can run whatever length dropper post he wants. I imagine he doesn't want it too low so he can lean on it for certain cornering situations. I remember either Fabien Barel and Nicolas Vouilloz talking about not having the seat too low when they were racing EWS.
  • 2 4
 Aint that what infinite travel is for tho?
  • 4 0
 @mollow: In theory, it sounds good but in practise I hardly ever stop anywhere in the middle of the travel. It's either up or down for me. So 100mm to 125mm is enough clearance to get my butt out and low enough at the bottom position that i can control the bike with my thighs/knees.
I can't say for sure if Danny Hart rides like that but he might, seeing that he should be able to get any dropper length he wants.
  • 2 0
 Brb, increasing my seatpost and add more spacers to my bike.
  • 14 0
 But you have to remember that he struggles to sit down with balls so big
  • 13 0
 All the spacers.
  • 4 0
 Well to be fair he's used to a much higher stack on his DH bike. But yeah, full cruiser position.
  • 2 0
 On the dropper post
  • 1 0
 IIRC, PRO Components sells a 40mm riser bar (Gee used one in the past). They probably weren't able to get one for this race.
  • 1 0
 He's 5'9" and needs all those spacers. These bikes need longer head tubes.
  • 1 0
 @alexsin: Totally disagree. If the trails are lower angle you'll get way more front end grip with a lower bar.

Try riding a pump track with a high bar height.
  • 11 0
 Hart is only 26!?!? For some reason I thought he was way older.
  • 3 21
flag Joelukens00 (Aug 4, 2018 at 13:35) (Below Threshold)
 Ya He's 26. You were just wrong. Work on paying attention
  • 10 0
 Stay on ya bike Danny! Hope you crush it.
  • 1 21
flag Joelukens00 (Aug 4, 2018 at 13:36) (Below Threshold)
 That is a really old joke. Please grow up and find some new content. Nobody wants to hear it anymore.
  • 4 0
 @Joelukens00: Aren't yo just a ray of sunshine. The up votes speak for themselves.
  • 10 0
 I've heard he's fast
  • 3 10
flag chillrider199 (Aug 3, 2018 at 19:07) (Below Threshold)
 Oh hartly fast... get it?
  • 7 0
 Saracen needs to come to the US
  • 7 3
 100mm dropper... Too much stuff in the seat tube to fit anything longer? There's a lot of exposed post.
  • 1 0
 Yea man, I think he could use 125mm dropper. I'm 170cm and 100mm dropper is the worst thing for me, switched to 125mm and it's te best thing for me, but Danny is 175cm and he use 100mm dropper too, weird
  • 1 0
 @tulipanek: not necessarily some people have longer inseam to torso ratio or vice versa.
  • 1 0
 So this is a standard single pivot suspension design. I have ridden them and quite like it, needs some getting used to though, and it’s not not what Iam riding now. So of all the things we could discuss, I reckon that is the thing I would like to hear about most, not just theoretically, but from those of you who have ridden different kinds and thought about it a bit. For myself, I have found geometry rules, with suspension design coming after that. Never had the luxury of being able to do the proper experiments.
  • 3 0
 I like the hydration pack harness. Looks like it would keep the thing from shifting around.
  • 5 0
 USWE packs. they're awesome.
  • 1 0
 They're shite. And there customer service is even worse.
  • 3 0
 Someone please tell me what kind of a HYDRATION pack that is?!?! looks sleek and comfy!
  • 3 0
 Sweet looking bike for sure
  • 2 0
 Danny looks like an enduro racer, odds on him making an appearance at an EWS event soon!??
  • 2 5
 5 to shut up
  • 4 1
 Hanny Dart
  • 3 1
  • 2 0
 Dang that headtube is wider than it is long
  • 11 0
 That’s what she said...
  • 3 0
 That is an enormous headtube - more than likely designed to fit offset cups in there. Didn't catch anything about that in the article - but I ready pretty fast, maybe I missed it.
  • 3 0
 The Rocket's choad precedes a partly unfolded Gambler.
  • 1 1
 @pinhead907: Looks very Similar to a Pivot Head tube.. also the rear swingarm one piece design is super close to that of a Firebird or Phoenix!
  • 1 0
 is danny hart related to john oliver? real question, thy look like brothers
  • 4 3
 No bottle cage comments? What's happened pinkbike?
  • 3 2
 Where does the bottle go?
  • 1 0
 That is one beautiful bike!
  • 1 0
 Really sweet looking bike for a top athlete !
  • 1 1
 Downduro!!!! Such a nice bike!
  • 1 1
 Ugly fork strikes again..come on 2019
  • 1 0
 Still got beat by Peaty.
  • 1 2
 I guess we dont all need 203 mm rotors after all
  • 10 1
 We dont all weigh 66kg so no we do need 203 rotors
  • 2 2
 When you’ve got balls so big that you don’t need brakes....
  • 1 0
 I weigh only 60kg +- and 170cm tall(short haha) and I only use 180 rotors for big bike and 140 or 160 rotor for small play DJ bike Smile
  • 7 8
 The "Redcar Dentist"?
  • 7 9
 i would have taken the helmet and shades off for that pic
  • 52 1
 I’ll be watching for your bike check on Pinkbike
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