Photos: Matthew Delorme
The EWS is back this weekend for its second of three rounds in 2020. After the Rocky Mountain team were riding around in Zermatt on a 'secret'
new bike the 2021 Altitude
has now been revealed, so let's take a look at how Jesse Melamed and Remi Gauvin choose to run their race bikes and what differences there are between their setups.
170 cm/ 5'7" Weight
68kg / 152lbsInstagram @jessemelamedBike DetailsFrame Size
Medium (Custom Ride9 Chip)Wheel Size
Fox 38 (170mm // 44mm Offset // 80psi // 2 Tokens) and Fox DHX (425lb Spring)Drivetrain & Brakes
RaceFace and OneUpWheels & Rubber
RaceFace and Maxxis
177cm / 5'10"Weight
80kg / 180 lbInstagram: @remi.the.semiBike DetailsFrame Size
Large (Ride9 setting 2)Wheel Size
Fox 38 (170mm // 44mm Offset // 102psi // 3 Tokens) and Fox DHX (500lb Spring)Drivetrain & Brakes
RaceFace and OneUpWheels & Rubber
RaceFace and Maxxis
|We are in a unique position because what we ride at home is just really sick. So basically you ride at home and the bike that you want to ride is more supportive so it supports you in the corners and traction isn’t really as much of a goal because the dirt is so good. |
So you come to Europe and generally, there is less traction, it is chunkier and it is sketchier. You are less comfortable so you tend to need a more reactive bike that is focused more on the traction. Because you are never able to push that hard here where you need the support because there is just less traction and the corners are less built up.
We end up going quite a bit softer when we are in Europe compared to at home. I took out five psi in the fork since coming here and less compression and things like that. It is definitely a steep learning curve, especially on a new bike when you haven’t raced it in Europe yet. You get here and you have to just start again.— Remi
|Basically we had spent a lot of time on the Slayer, nearly all of winter, we were planning on racing that for the first two rounds then we would be on this bike. Getting on this bike and any new bike it is very difficult to dial in and find your place on it really. We were kind of struggling to set it up so we asked for a position between 2 and 3 as we liked parts of three and we liked parts of two and then it just happened that it was the exact leverage curve of the Slayer so that's maybe why we quickly felt comfortable with it.— Jesse|
The new Altitude has a flip chip that can adjust the chainstay length - Remi and Jesse have a custom one that splits the difference between the long and short position.
One of the few differences when it comes to their cockpit setup are Jesse's cut down grips for his smaller hands.
Jesse chooses to run the Mallet E pedals (right) whereas Remi chooses the Mallet DH.
Pinkbike should have a template for bike checks so that ALL of the details are covered off.
(It's awesome that Rocky uses a headset standard where this is an option though.)
32t ring for me and 34t for Remi because he has the bigger cassette.
175mm dropper post for both.
19psi for me. 22-24 for Remi.
Headset spacers: yes.
Ask and jesse will provide. Good luck today bro
Also really weird to have an altitude 170/160 when you have a Slayer 170/170 with a similar leverage curve as Jesse said.
Weird decisions from Rocky. But the bike stills looks nice!
Remi and Jesse: “ride9 is not enough options”
Any background infos for that?
It was a rhetorical question... Zip tying grips on is what your spastic mate does when he doesn't know how to tie wire. You only zip tie a grip on once before you realize its a shit idea.
It’s Enduro so it’s not super critical but I see loads of guys on trail bikes with the same.
Let's not forget that the positiobmn in which they will pedal is actually 3-4 cm lower as, in the pics, the bikes aren't sag.
As to the compromise, when ref. to enduro bikes, I always thought that the whole point of the dropper is to remove the saddle as much as possible not just slightly. For me, as much as possible means slammed droppers.
Not in relation with the bb(although, some could argue that because you sagged the bike, you have actually slacken the STA making the height from the horizontal line that crosses the BB with the vertical line that crosses the center of the saddle shorter)
..no, I believed @jclnv ref. to the fact that the saddles seems to be higher than the stems, on a horizontal line; but, maybe I understand it incorrectly.
I believe jclnv is commenting on how the droppers are 100% slammed to the collar, which means it's unlikely the post is at the ideal pedaling height, unless Rocky designed each frame specifically around Jesse and Remi's legs.
And as a long-legged rider, it's not 'wrong' to have the seat higher than the stem. Just personal preference.
Though it would not surprise me if they slammed them right before a stage for more clearance, then raised back up for a transfer. I have done that before. By luck, my current setup is the lowest it goes in the frame (curved tube limits insert length) and it matches my pedal height perfect.
Where did that disconnect happen? Doesn't give a ton of consumer confidence in the design.
And yes, I know many many racers tweak things, but a brand new frame that supposedly was made for racing should probably be a bit closer to what the racers actually want.
Do you expect a racer to run exactly the same stock setup as sold in the shops or you ‘lose confidence’? What about their confidence to ride the bike as fast as possible?
The fact we can buy 90% or more of what the pros race in this sport I think is a great thing, a few pound purchasing and angle headset and you are closer still, if you think copying a pro will make you faster that is?
I run the standard spindle. Tried the longer one once but didn't really like it.
And yes, to some extent copying the pros _may_ make you faster. They ride almost everyday in a variety of conditions, so they have the best idea of what can make a bike fast and enjoyable (it's tough enough to do a 2-day EWS race, would be even worse on a bike that is miserable to ride). If the fastest riders (and the riders finishing races and not crashing) want a longer front-center or more fork trail (both provided by the angleset) or a more balance rear-center (custom chainstay adjuster), it's worth the general public taking a look at how those could help them have more fun, whether that's going faster or just crashing less.
@JesseMelamed, nice humble brag. Yes of course, professional racers are faster than the general public, that's why they're professional racers, but that doesn't change the fact that you and your teammates made changes to a brand new bike that is already supposed to be super adjustable. Yeah, you're faster than us, but doesn't that mean other riders don't want the ideal front-center (angle-set), or rear-center (custom chain-stay length adjusters), or leverage curve (custom Ride-9 (Ride-1?) insert). I mean, you made a bunch of videos about finding the fastest lines on certain trails, why wouldn't folks want to ride a similar bike as you if they try those lines or techniques?
These are things you see riders experimenting with on an existing design and that are usually integrated into the next revision of a bike. This _is_ the next revision, and the representative riders are making multiple changes out of the box. I'm not saying this new bike sucks, but just that it's hard to see the value when it seems like a bunch of changes are going to be necessary out of the box.
How about this - try and run gearing some pros do, see if you can still climb? Try and run the spring rate some pros do, see how harsh the bike feels?
Maybe you need to look at some more race bikes and see what people are doing - pretty much half of the DH field have modified bikes from stock.
Maybe go and tell people in other sports to stop running different gear to the public too?
I'm saying it's weird that Rocky would release a new enduro bike, and then immediately slap a bunch of custom parts on it for the pros. From the outside, it looks like there was little feedback from the racers on how this bike should be.
And don't give me that bullshit about only pros being to ride hard enough to utilize the geometry. If a slacker headtube makes it easier for Jesse to go from Mach 10 to Mach Silly-Fast and grab some wins, and also makes it easier for me to get from Mach 0.5 to Mach Stupid and maybe grab some bragging right with my buddies, or just carry enough speed to hit that one jump a little nicer.
Saying non-professionals can't push the geometry to it's limit is stupid. Even if I'm not pushing the bike's limits, I'm pushing _my_ limits on _that_ bike. So if the geometry helps increase those limits with a little more front-center and fork trail (main things provided by going slacker with an angleset) to keep me just that much more in control when ripping nasty steep chutes, well that's just f*cking awesome.
So yeah, Jesse needs/wants to make those tweaks because they help him go faster, but for anyone to say that similar tweaks wouldn't help the average shredder riding in similar terrain is just plain wrong.
You either hilariously over-estimate your standard of riding, dont understand the requirement for personal preference regarding setup, or you are close to being a pro yourself (even then, people are different and need a different setup to work for them)
Engage reality and understand that there is not always a definitive 'better' - and that at a world class racers level they have requirements different to you than when you 'shred with your buddies' - Thats the whole point, a slacker head angle may make you personally slower, not faster, get it? A different leverage curve may make the bike too harsh, but they are cool with that for efficiency reasons get it?
You are literally pulling apart the whole reason RM made the bike adjustable - if there is a perfect setting for everyone - why bother?
I'm not saying a bike alone makes you faster, but if someone wanted to get faster, and use the excellent RM EWS team as a role model, a great place to start would be a similar bike, obviously along with training and eating well, etc. But you can't buy a similar bike geometry-wise directly from RM, you need to add parts, and that's lame, since it's being sold as the enduro race bike.
I think you are vastly underestimating the skills of other riders. I never once said that I would instantly be faster if I had an Altitude with an angleset vs without. But there are _plenty_ of shreddy groms who could benefit from some more aggressive geo to keep pushing limits. But if they buy this bike, they might want to look into getting an angleset and custom dropout chips and maybe a custom Ride9 chip, because the fastest examples of this bike can't be replicated with the built-in adjustments.
The great thing about the Altitude and it's adjustments are that they can be dialled in to fit the person, their riding style, and their terrain. The reason we immediately changed some of the bits was to make it similar to the Slayer I was riding all winter long and comfortable on. Just because I am using the custom bits now doesn't mean I don't have faith that the stock adjustment range of the bike will suit me once I have time to find my setup on it. Those parts were to make the bike easier to transition on to FOR ME, not to make up for anything wrong with the bike.
"the stock adjustment range of the bike will suit me once I have time to find my setup" Only time will tell.
Edit. I am going to be so down-voted for this )))))
What do you mean by non-technical?, do you mean xc trails?
On one of my local trails there is a single lets say 140 degree corner that always makes me curse because it's just flat dirt with no support that makes you slow all the way down. If it had even a little 6" berm to support you it would be way more fun and not kill your flow.