Bike Check: Gee Atherton's Trek Session 9.9 29

Sep 16, 2018
by Tristan Tinn  

Here is Gee Atherton's Session 9.9 29 - the winning bike from Red Bull Hardline 2018. Gee rides an XL Trek Session with 29" wheels and 190mm of travel front and rear, and the bike is specced with off the shelf components, although some parts have slight customisation to improve the feel for Gee's preferences. Gee runs 9 volume spacers in his fork and 26 psi in his rear tyre and 24 psi in the front. He does not run an insert unless the track is extremely rocky.

For this event, Gee's set-up remained the same except he dropped 5 psi from the rear shock, sped up the low speed rebound one click on the fork and wound the pedal pins on the Crank Brothers Mallet DH pedals out one turn, these adjustments were made only as the track became wet. Gee normally runs dry tyres for most conditions, however he opted for mud tyres in his race run.

Bike Check
Gee Atherton // Trek Factory Racing
Age: 33
Hometown: Llangynog
Height: 6ft 2in // 188 cm
Weight: 83kg
Instagram: @gee_atherton

Bike Check

Bike Check
Trek Session 9.9 29

Size: XL
Weight: 35lbs with pedals
Colour: Custom
Travel: 190mm front and rear
Tyre Pressures: 24/26 psi
Bar Width: 790mm

Bike Check
Bike Check
Wound out pedal pins and fender to fight the mud

Bike Check
Ground off angles at the lever tips give a smoother feel for Gee

Bike Check
Bike Check
Hope's 7 Speed DH cassette to keep him moving

Bike Check
Custom paint with layers of foil beneath the lacquer really makes this bike stand out

MENTIONS: @redbullbike / @trek


  • 74 2
 Looking at the 29er bikes (including this one) and they don't look that odd to me anymore. The wheels look like they fit in the frame way better now than some of the first protos that began to emerge at varying points last year. And what does look super weird to me are the XL 26" DH bikes from 5 years ago... they look like odd and missized.
  • 13 3
 yeah but compare some of the 29ers from 4-5 years ago to the current ones.
One of the reason they don't look odd anymore is we got used to them…. but the other reason is that most brands increased the length/reach of their frame, stopped putting 29inch wheels on S size bikes and stopped the aberrant "this is a 29er so it must have a road/xc geo".
When evil presented the following at the end 2014, nobody said it looked ugly… if yeti or intense had released the SB100 or the sniper trail at the time, 29ers would not have been called ugly and odd looking.
  • 4 2
 @zede: I was flicking through an old copy of Dirt yesterday from 2013 or 2014, and there was a photo of Neil Stewart winning the whip off on a 26" Wilson. Those tiny wheels with the big tyres look almost mini moto esque now.
  • 26 1
 I suppoooooose that was still ok to watch, eeeeven though i ALREADY KNEW THE RESULT!!! Smile

Nice one Gee Wink
  • 22 0
 So hope we see Gee smash it again in 2019, such a fantastic rider and top bloke!
  • 9 0
 Gee is back!
  • 6 0
 Gee's interviewing skills at Worlds were some of the best I have ever seen in any discipline. I know he will be racing for a long time, but dang man, I would love to see him announcing the races.
  • 3 0
 One of the sickest runs ever seen.
  • 20 0
 I guess dh race bikes and enduro race bikes weigh about the same now
  • 7 0
 Bearing in mind enduro bikes have wide range gears and dropper posts that weigh a lot, yes they do weigh about the same.
  • 2 1
 They both run pretty much similar wheels, tires things like that. Frame weights will be minor it use to be the burly stuff DH riders used now they are using lightest they can make survive for less than 10 min.
  • 3 0
 I guess the increased weight of the dual crown fork trades off against the wide range cassette + dropper seat post on the enduro bikes. Everything else is comparable as most EWS/pro level enduro bikes have DH casing tires and similar size rear shocks to DH bikes now.
  • 1 0
 Top spec'd Enduro bikes gonna be 4-5 lbs lighter than this.
  • 1 0
 He easily has 20lbs of mud on that bike though...
  • 25 7
 Looks like Session.
  • 17 1
 Stoked for Gee.

  • 16 2
 Why is he smiling?
  • 12 0
 Good to see gee back on form
  • 8 0
 Hell yeah Gee! You killed it! I had a feeling you were going to take it when I watched the POV footage. Congrats!
  • 5 0
 gee is so big that the bike looks like 27.5....redbull destroyed the race by not streaming it live but i'm super stoked for gee, it seems like he is coming back big and strong
  • 14 9
 Thanks pinkbike... Biggest spoiler of the year! Well done
  • 7 4
 the race was over before they posted this....
  • 14 0
 @loganskis: say that again, but slowly
  • 5 0
 9 volume spacers. That sounds a lot.
  • 15 0
 Not as much as 10 though
  • 2 0
 @Jack-McLovin: bit more than 6 tho eh
  • 4 0
 Sick paint job, bike looks frikkin awesome
  • 9 6
 I thought 29ers suck for aggressive riding?
  • 3 0
 Not a Trek fan but damn that looks great
  • 3 0
 Well don Gee, that was a dialed win!
  • 4 1
 Gee on Hope? Wow!
  • 1 0
 And on a SRAM drivetrain, after almost a decade on Shimano.
  • 3 0
 They (Atherton racing) have been on Hope all season
  • 2 0
 Trek Factory Racing but on Schwalbe tires..... Huh????
  • 2 0
 Trek (Bontrager) does not really have any mud option. Seems like the reason for the swap.
  • 1 0
 any ideas why he was running Schwalbe tires for the race run? are no mud tires from bontrager available in 29?
  • 1 0
 Just clicked on his insta - sends you to Example! G-man!
  • 7 8
 These Treks look so sweet, It seriously almost makes me wanna buy one despite their price. Notice that I said almost. Because Commencal.
  • 16 0
 Oh we noticed, because noticing
  • 1 0
 Super stoked on Gee winning this year!!!
  • 1 0
 Yeah, Gee! Mad run. Stoked for you and all the competitors.
  • 1 0
 Nice one Gee. Loving the 'school woodwork class' aesthetic on that trophy.
  • 1 0
 What grips is he running?
  • 4 0
 non lock on ODI's by the looks of it less vibration
  • 1 0
 @nojzilla: They wire the grips to keep them from spinning.
  • 1 0
 9 volume spacers in his fork??????what the hellllll
  • 2 2
 Crazy how he wasn't selected for World Champs.
  • 4 0
 What, he wasn’t selected for Worlds? First i’m Hearing of this.
  • 1 0
 @charmingbob: Maybe I've got the wrong Atherton....
  • 2 1
 29 ain't dead !
  • 1 0
  • 1 3
 I’m calling BS on the 35lbs weight. Not with pedals, DH casing tires, and Cush Core inserts front and rear. Put it on a scale and show the picture.
  • 2 5
 I find it very uncomfortable to see paint chips on that bike.
  • 19 1
 I find it comforting and satisfying. He uses that thing man!
  • 16 0
 buy it to break it. thats my motto for my bikes. whats the point of having a sick ass ride if you're going to baby it?
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