Marcelo Gutierrez Makes it Five Straight
Since its inception, Specialized's Demo has been the most popular DH bike at Whistler, but is it the best? Marcelo Gutierrez has presented five reasons that Giant's Glory is the bike to beat on the holy mountain of gravity. Gutierrez once again stomped all comers on the Garbanzo DH today to make it five in a row at Crankworx aboard his trusty Giant on a course that showcases the bike park's experience. Like many hopefuls, Gutierrez used a dropper post to shave some time from the pedal-heavy track. How good is the Glory? Next time you ride Whistler, demo one.
Marcelo opted for a RockShox Reverb dropper post to ace the pedaling sections.
Sam Blenkinsop's Norco Range
Sam Blenkinsop risked the advantage of his DH bike's superior suspension to reap the benefits of his Norco Range's quicker acceleration and pedaling. In the ultimate "could have/would have" story, Sam missed a ladder bridge on "In Deep" and crashed over the bars. In spite of that, he finished only six seconds behind Gutierrez. One can only wonder how the race would have played without the digger.
Jack Moir's Intense 29er DH Proto'
The third spot of this year's Garbanzo went to a big-wheel DH bike rider who has been up in the world Cup standings ever since Intense launched the prototype at Fort William. For Crankworx, RockShox added a remote lockout Super Deluxe Coil shock to Jack Moir's racebike - which apparently worked to his advantage. Will he use it on the pedally World Championships course at Cairns?
Tracey Hannah's Prototype Polygon DH Bike Wins First Time Out
Polygon was the first brand to feature Naild's R3act rear suspension with the debut of the Square One, and its creator, Darrell Voss, was not shy about the possibility that a downhill version would follow soon after. Voss said that the team brought three Polygon DH prototypes to Whistler a week early for testing, with the intention to seal them from sight in the box van before Crankworx began. The UR Polygon team would then return to their regular race bikes for the competitions.
Both Mick and Tracey Hannah decided to race the protos' after back to back runs turned up significantly faster on the bike park's blown-out DH trails. How much faster? Three seconds was the conservative number. Tracey said in a brief encounter that she was liking the new bike and had no plans to go back - and says that Mick is on the same page. With the World Cup series within reach and Cairns around the corner, the Hannahs are either taking a big risk, or they know something that we don't.