7 XC Bike Checks from Albstadt World Cup

May 26, 2017
by Richard Cunningham  

Cross Country Bike Checks from Albstadt World Cup
Jolanda Neff's
KROSS LEVEL TE
No rear suspension and no dropper post for Neff.

Cross Country Bike Checks from Albstadt World Cup
SRAM everywhere: Level brakes...
Cross Country Bike Checks from Albstadt World Cup
XX1 Eagle transmission, powered by a 32-tooth chainring.

Cross Country Bike Checks from Albstadt World Cup
Remote fork lockout and lack of a dropper post hints that this race will be contested on the climbs. Pure and simple.
Cross Country Bike Checks from Albstadt World Cup
Mitas Sylla Textra tires on DT Swiss XRC 1200 carbon wheels.

Cross Country Bike Checks from Albstadt World Cup




Cross Country Bike Checks from Albstadt World Cup
Florian Vogel's
FOCUS RAVEN MAX
No on the rear suspension, yes on the dropper post.

Cross Country Bike Checks from Albstadt World Cup
SRM power meter adapted to Eagle 36T chainring.
Cross Country Bike Checks from Albstadt World Cup
One looks tells Florian how hard he can put the hammer down

Cross Country Bike Checks from Albstadt World Cup
Florian's unusual looking dropper post is a blacked-out Specialized Command Post XCP. The bulge contains enough room for 35-millimeters of drop, then the post necks down to accommodate the 27.2-millimeter seat tube diameter used for cross-country frames.

Cross Country Bike Checks from Albstadt World Cup
HT pedals with titanium axles.

Cross Country Bike Checks from Albstadt World Cup
RockShox remote lockout.
Cross Country Bike Checks from Albstadt World Cup
DT Swiss XMC carbon wheels.

Cross Country Bike Checks from Albstadt World Cup
SRAM Level Ultimate brakes and foam grips.

Cross Country Bike Checks from Albstadt World Cup




Cross Country Bike Checks from Albstadt World Cup
Marco Fontana's BIANCHI METHANOL CV
I'll take Shimano Di2 electronic shifting, but please hold the rear suspension and dropper post.

Cross Country Bike Checks from Albstadt World Cup
FRM carbon chain guide, FSA cranks and Crankbrothers Candy pedals.

Cross Country Bike Checks from Albstadt World Cup
Shimano XTR brakes and remote lever for Fox Float SC fork.
Cross Country Bike Checks from Albstadt World Cup
Remote lockout, GPS mount, and Shimano Di2 display view for space with an inverted FSA stem.

Cross Country Bike Checks from Albstadt World Cup
Kenda Honey Badger XC Pro tires on Crankbrothers Cobalt II carbon wheels.

Marco Fontana s Bianchi Methanol CV




Cross Country Bike Checks from Albstadt World Cup
Sam Gaze's
SPECIALIZED EPIC S-WORKS
Sparse describes Sam's hardtail. No dropper, one shift lever, two brakes and a one-by SRAM Eagle drivetrain. The inertia-controlled, Brain-equipped RockShox SID World Cup fork eliminates the need for a handlebar-mount remote lever.

Cross Country Bike Checks from Albstadt World Cup
Rotor Rex 1 crankset with Q-ring oval chainring and Look pedals.

Cross Country Bike Checks from Albstadt World Cup
Magura MT8 Carbon brakes and no-frill grips.
Cross Country Bike Checks from Albstadt World Cup
Specialized carbon Roval Control SL wheels

Cross Country Bike Checks from Albstadt World Cup




Cross Country Bike Checks from Albstadt World Cup
Chloe Woodruff's PIVOT LES
Woodruff is sporting a full-travel Fox Transfer dropper post.

Cross Country Bike Checks from Albstadt World Cup
Fox Step Cast fork and matching foam grips.

Cross Country Bike Checks from Albstadt World Cup
Stages power meter.

Cross Country Bike Checks from Albstadt World Cup
Electronic remote lockout plugged into the fork.
Cross Country Bike Checks from Albstadt World Cup
Shimano XTR Di2

Cross Country Bike Checks from Albstadt World Cup
Stan's prototype carbon wheels. Chloe is a racing development rider.

Cross Country Bike Checks from Albstadt World Cup





Cross Country Bike Checks from Albstadt World Cup
Trek's IsoSpeed Decoupler reportedly reduces impacts without riders suffering the stigma of riding rear suspension.

Cross Country Bike Checks from Albstadt World Cup
Shimano Di2 shifting, with a Fox electric lockout switch on the right grip.

Cross Country Bike Checks from Albstadt World Cup
Shimano XTR one-by crankset with the obligatory top guide (MRP).
Cross Country Bike Checks from Albstadt World Cup
Short-travel Fox Transfer dropper post with the saddle slammed forward.

Cross Country Bike Checks from Albstadt World Cup
Bontrager wheels and tires - and an impressive bail-out gear on that XTR cassette.




Mathieu van der Poel s Stevens Senora SL.
Mathieu van der Poel's STEVENS SENORA SL
DT Swiss suspension and no dropper for the Dutch crusher.

In last week s World Cup Van der Poel dropped his chain due to a broken RD clutch. To add security the Cabtech chainguard provides peace of mind.
In last week's World Cup, Van der Poel dropped his chain due to a broken RD clutch. To add security, the Cabtech chainguard provides peace of mind.

Heat shrunk cable wrapping and a relatively long stem for the long Dutch rider to keep things low.
Heat-shrunk wrap and a long, inverted stem for the big Dutchman..
An 11-40 XTR cassette with a XTR Di2 derailleur.
Shimano XTR Di2 transmission with an 11-40 cassette.

Sleek carbonb lines. No dropper post for Van der Poel.





103 Comments

  • 109 3
 that specialized is simple in the sweetest of ways
  • 19 3
 that bike looks like a true race machine
  • 12 47
flag RedRedRe (May 26, 2017 at 22:00) (Below Threshold)
 It is simple just like that piece of rubber they placed on the downtube to prevent the fork from damage it? Another S made thing that is going to crack at some race and their going to hide it or make up some excuses. Going to be an hit with dentists.
  • 2 15
flag KiwiXC (May 26, 2017 at 22:39) (Below Threshold)
 @RedRedRe: and Yeti
  • 7 6
 @RedRedRe: Yep. Downtube bumper in 2017 is a joke.
  • 11 2
 @RedRedRe:
Why so bitchy!?
  • 2 0
 is the Spesh chain covered in some kind of lubricating powder or is it just dust from the ground? the rest of the bike is spotless but there's clearly powder on the chain only...
  • 11 1
 @jclnv: Actually a downtube bumper isn't a joke. Frames used to be designed with for example a bent (see Evie Richard's Trek), to prevent the fork crown from hitting the frame. With a more straight downtube, like this S-works epic HT , the weight can be reduced and the stiffness will become better. So, it may not look real nice, but it definitely has it's advantages.
  • 6 1
 @nickkk: @nickkk: That would be the dentist-only Creamic Speed magical watt saving chain
  • 4 0
 @nickkk: Yeah I think it's a wax lubricant.
  • 4 3
 Looks like the frame is too small with the layback seatpost and long stem from the 90's.
  • 2 1
 @Kjell: It's mainly a consequence of the short head tube and too steep a head angle.

Anyway a Scott Scale is lighter than the Epic HT without the silly bumpers that you know won't save the frame in a serious crash.
  • 2 2
 @RedRedRe: do dentists even ride? That analogy is so lame just like you.
  • 1 0
 @bender-oz: 100$ (over regular price ) to save 7 watts is a good deal to me.
  • 2 1
 @Beez177: read the comment it was nothing about dentists riding, it was about the fact that the crown will smash through the downtube and riders will lose teeth.
  • 9 0
 @Beez177: Annika Langvad - world champion dentist.
  • 1 0
 @trek551: It's actually 2-5 watts but who's counting... and all your $100 is getting you is a chain that has been cleaned of the factory protective lube and relubed with Squirt.
  • 1 0
 The tires on Same Gaze's Specialized are the new Renegade Gription, with sneaky Sworks branding for some reason. I'm running a pair of the 2.3's on my Single Speed and FS XC bike, love em.
  • 38 1
 Awesome. Please ask the riders what they weigh and what tire pressure they run at the next round. Bike weight would also be interesting. Great coverage.
  • 29 2
 Rise of dropper post.
  • 4 0
 I see what you did there
  • 20 0
 Wow, they all look fast just sitting there, awesome coverage! I didn't want them to end! --This is the coverage we want of the EWS and DH bikes, please!!!
  • 20 0
 Agree! Can't get enough, don't care what the discipline is - XC, EWS, DH - it's all good baby!!
  • 15 0
 I'm just here to say why the hell is there such a big gap between races (DH)?? More frequent races, longer season will gain interest and following. Guess I was spoiled watching the Supercross.
  • 5 3
 I could only guess at recovery time, but even then most road competitive events are closer together then xc
  • 14 0
 So many mistakes in this article. You may not find it as exciting to report on as dh but atleast give it some respect
  • 15 1
 Agree. To make it easier for the editor:
- There are no SRAM Guide Level brakes
- Once again you call the grips foam grips whereas they are actually silicone
- Someone already pointed out that Florian's bike has SRM power meter, not Quarq.
  • 6 0
 @siim-s:
-not a 9.7 procaliber
-Jolanda Not Yolanda
-not an xtr cassette (unless modified)
  • 7 3
 @siim-s:
Foam grips is a general term. Ease up. Esi's have been considered foam grips for years
  • 7 0
 A bumpy ride is not 'stigma'.
  • 2 0
 And Jolanda's tires are Mitas Scylla.
  • 5 0
 @iamamodel: I think he meant the stigma of inefficient pedaling. Not the best writing all around though.
  • 5 0
 @siim-s: foam and silicone are not mutually exclusive. You can make a foam out of just about anything.
  • 2 0
 @KingColin08: yeah siim I have silicone grips that aren't foam grips...
  • 1 0
 @siim-s: God help us if that Focus Raven has 27.5 post diameter...! -actually 27.2.
  • 4 0
 Also it's Florian Vogel not Vogle
  • 1 1
 - no Emily Batty
  • 8 0
 Were you worried that Sam Gaze's stem wouldn't fit into a single close up picture because its so long? Is that why you didn't make mention of it? Anyways love the tech and thought that goes into each of these racer's rigs, keep it up!
  • 1 0
 the bike with the craziest seat position and stem and no mention of either?!
  • 1 0
 @samuelthecamel: Sam is about 6'3" and looking at the bike you can tell he's done everything on there for fit. The seat post is offset back and the saddle is still mounted close to the nose even with that long and low stem; he's gotta get the big frame over the front wheel some how eh? Also the cranks look to be at least 175mm (I know thats the max that Rotor will sell us mortals but knowing Sam's racing pedigree they could've chosen to manufacture 177.5mm or 180mm cranks for him) which would start being on the long side for mtb. Anyways, in no way knocking him but a little insight into whats probably going on with that bike fit.
  • 9 0
 That Bianchi is a beauty!
  • 2 0
 Looks mean
  • 10 2
 SRM power meter on Florian Vogel's bike not SRAM Quarq. Also Vogel not Vogle. At least try to spell the riders names right!
  • 5 0
 Not the only name... Jolanda not Yolanda as per the closeup photo of her name sticker
  • 14 20
flag WAKIdesigns (May 26, 2017 at 23:15) (Below Threshold)
 Oh Jesus you people really need a fkng kick in the butt from life once in a while to stay sane. My name is Waclaw Kipszak. If I would care so much for people misspelling my name, I'd fkng kill myself... at least in 19th century natural selection was weeding it out. One twat was getting offended for getting his name misspelled, asking for duel and he was getting shot, because stupid people get shot!

This is why apart from landing on beaches with guns and taking over sht, English became the best language - it's simple Aaron Gwin, Danny Hart, Wyn Masters, Emily Batty, Rachel Ath... ok she's Welsh, anyways. It's not Wloszczowska, Fagerhaug... hey what happened there?!
  • 24 1
 @WAKIdesigns: my name is Jordan but it's pronounced Luxury yacht
  • 1 0
 @WAKIdesigns: how do you spell your name in cyrillic ?
  • 1 2
 @hamncheez: how would I know?! Check with translator Razz
  • 9 0
 My back hurts just looking at those bikes
  • 8 0
 That Pivot though!!Wowzers
  • 4 1
 Great coverage. I'm really enjoying all the XC stuff you guys are doing. XC bikes are by far the most interesting from a tech perspective because they're alll pretty unique and the laid back rules allows for some unique and cutting edge builds.
  • 5 0
 I'm sure the pros know what they like and what works, but a 35mm dropper post hardly seems worth the added weight, when considering these every-gram-counts race steeds.
  • 7 1
 Average bike value 12G'seeeeeeeezzzzuuuuussssss$$$
  • 1 0
 Compare that with any motor sport and it's a total bargain.
  • 6 0
 You sure that's an XTR cassette on Evie's bike Richard?
  • 2 0
 Also not a 9.7 with lower grade carbon...
  • 4 0
 I would be far more worried about having skinny semi slicks on a steep section than a remote lever dropper post. The dropper post is a huge weight penalty.
  • 1 0
 It's not really huge though, is it
  • 2 0
 @rokboy: most dropper post with a remote and cable add a pound of weight.
Yes on a XC bike that is huge.
  • 1 0
 @sshredder
On a bike that light it hardly matters
  • 5 0
 XC bikes are actually pretty neat, thanks for the coverage!
  • 2 0
 The S Works is damn near a work of art. Errrrm, but, WHAT IT THE FRENCH IS ALL OVER THAT CHAIN?!? I mean. . . I know the bike is pretty but did you guys have to. . .(use your imagination).
  • 2 1
 Lube bro.
  • 2 0
 It's chain wax : moltenspeedwax.com
  • 2 0
 Take a joke guys. . . jeez.
  • 3 1
 If I were a XC racer it would be the Pivot LES or the Bianchi for me. The Specialized is okay but the curvature of the seat stay seat tube junction appear to limit tire size.
  • 1 0
 Well it's an xc bike so....
  • 4 1
 That's great bike companies are introducing a new Seatpost diameter standard. 27.5, what's wrong with 27.2?
  • 10 0
 I'm hoping it was a typo...
  • 4 0
 we need 10-12 world cups per year...pretty please uci
  • 2 2
 Great to see XC professionals are heeding the advice of rank and file mountain bikers...dropper posts increase cornering speed enough to justify the added grams, even on a more traditional xc track. (but its still about the rider, so a rigid post will likely win this round).
  • 3 0
 Damned sexy bikes, there's no denying it.
  • 2 0
 On the Focus Raven MAX they've got the power meter wrong- it's an SRM not a SRAM QUARQ
  • 1 0
 Love this coverage. Having done a few XC races and completely sucking Haha, much MUCH respect for these athletes and there bikes.
  • 2 0
 Emily Batty runs her seat slammed forward as well, does Trek does Trek have a geometry problem?
  • 1 0
 Fontana's bike does not have an inverted stem. The stem which is FSA SL-K -20 degrees has only one position, is not a flip flop design.
  • 2 0
 Spelt Jolanda incorrectly, perhaps on purpose?
  • 3 0
 DROOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOL.
  • 2 0
 Prue race machines! Unbelievable.
  • 2 0
 Thank you for making my morning!
  • 1 0
 I wanna see PILGRIM OR MCCAUL take one ofe these bike on dirt jumps !!! should do it frame is similar, jus whels 3" bigger
  • 1 0
 Lol @ Pinkbike editors and QC... "SRAM Quarq power meter adapted to Eagle 36T chainring." under an SRM power meter.
  • 1 0
 What is the point of a dropper post with only 35mm of drop? Does it even do anything?
  • 6 0
 It drops 35mm
  • 1 0
 Can't imagine why any real mountain biker would race without one of those 25g chain watchers....
  • 1 0
 One might think, everyone is on the power meters these days. I can image, having race data can be useful, no?
  • 1 0
 I would never ride one but f me I want one
  • 2 0
 Sweet
  • 2 1
 27.2mm seatpost? I've seen a lot of weird sizes of seatpost but never 27.5
  • 3 2
 Noob.
  • 1 0
 Those are some serious XC bikes!
  • 1 0
 I love me some xc machines!
  • 1 0
 Florians bike has an SRM power meter not SRAM
  • 1 0
 I slipped when I look at the Look pedals
  • 1 0
 Ohhhhhhh, carbon fork crowns...so pretty!
  • 1 0
 what is that shimano cassette? How many teeth?
  • 1 0
 Something about evie richards' outfit i find captivating
  • 1 0
 Senora ufhhhhhhhhh lovekit!!
  • 1 0
 What about Flo's wheels? Looks like new 30mm DT XMC Carbon rims...?!
  • 1 0
 Great stuff PB!
  • 1 0
 STEVENS !!!
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