Pit Randoms Round 1: Mont-Sainte-Anne World Champs 2019

Aug 27, 2019
by Daniel Sapp  
Harrison s liquid finish.
Charlie Harrison's liquid finish on his Session.

Details on the fresh Session.
Details on the fresh Session.
Wilson and Harrison will pilot these marble ink effect Session 29ers.
Wilson and Harrison will pilot these marble/ink effect 29ers.

You d expect nothing less than such a beautiful finish from the Trek crew.
You'd expect nothing less than such a beautiful finish from the Trek crew.

Cushcore ready to slip inside the Bontragers of the Trek Factory Racing World Champs duo.
Cushcores ready to slip inside the Bontrager tires of Trek Factory Racing's duo.

A sneak peak on the jungle special from Scott.
A sneak peek of the jungle special from Scott on the bike of Dean Lucas.

Deanos Machineos will of course represent green and gold once again.
Deanos Machineos will, of course, represent green and gold again.

Full pics of the Scott bikes as with many others are not yet allowed. For now here s a preview of hoe Flo Payet will roll into 2019 Worlds.
Here's a preview of how Flo Payet will roll into 2019 Worlds.

Jacob Dickson one of the extreme few Irish men to represent at World Champs.
Jacob Dickson, one of the extreme few Irishmen to represent at World Champs.
The leprechaun look for Jacob s Giant 29er.
The leprechaun look for Jacob's Giant 29er.

Bottoms up at the Giant pit.
Bottoms up at the Giant pit.

Guess who s ride
Guess who's ride?

No points for spotting H lls new look upon which she will defend her rainbow stripes.
No points for spotting Vali Holl's s new look, upon which she will defend her rainbow stripes.

Conor Fearon bringing some glitter to champs for 2019.
Conor Fearon bringing some glitter to the Champs for 2019.

One beautiful Operator almost ready for action.
One beautiful Operator, almost ready for action.

Green and yellow have always been dangerous historically at World Champs.
Green and yellow have historically been dangerous at World Champs.

Daniel Paine working on Moir s ride.
Daniel Paine working on Moir's ride.
Jungle vibes for the Aussie this year.
Jungle vibes for the Aussie this year.

John Hall is back in business at the races and that can mean only one thing...
John Hall is back in business at the races and that can mean only one thing...

Tiger stripes for Aaron as well as Moir.
Tiger stripes for Aaron as well as Moir.

John Hall s signature Grizzly seal of approval.
John Hall's signature Grizzly seal of approval.
TRP prototype caliper on Aaron s M29.
TRP prototype caliper on Aaron's M29.

Signature leaving drilling on Gwin s TRPs.
Hall doing his signature drilling on Gwin's TRP levers.
Sneak peaking at AG s new machine awaiting new HTs and nation-appropriate Fox graphics.
Sneak peaking at AG's new machine awaiting new HTs and nation-appropriate Fox graphics.

Neko Mullaly s fresh lumberjack inspired M29 colors.
Neko Mullaly's fresh lumberjack inspired M29. Last year, Neko raffled off his World Champs bike for Can'd Aid which, among other things, helps build trails, get kids outside, and supply bikes to kids who can't afford them. After the success he had with it that time, he's decided to do it again. More details on that to come.

Fresh Syndicate paint for both Vergier and Shaw.... no sign of Minnaar s bike as yet.
Fresh Syndicate paint for both Vergier and Shaw. No sign of Minnaar's bike yet.

Syndicate mechanic PA installing Loris Vergier s headset.
Syndicate mechanic, PA, installing Loris Vergier's headset.

Dougie Fresh working on Luca Shaw s chain device.
Dougie Fresh working on Luca Shaw's chain device.

With all the big-rigs land-locked over in Europe the white little white tents of every nation are out under the Quebecois sun. Very few bikes are build yet but then it is still very early days.
With all the big-rigs land-locked over in Europe, rows of white tents from every nation are out under the Quebecois sun. Few bikes are fully built yet, but then it is still very early in the week. Stay tuned for more tech as the week goes on.



153 Comments

  • 218 0
 connor fearon's operator looks great with the vintage kona logo
  • 18 0
 @sosburn ahh I know eh? Love that old school font!
  • 7 0
 IKR....it had me at the flames!
  • 15 0
 I had to do a double take and make sure it wasn’t a Stinky.
  • 20 1
 All the feels looking at that thing. I remember seeing my first Stinky in the flesh at Fromme in probably 1998 or 1999. They were the shit back then and Cove had the craziest non-stock builds for sale. I had to settle for the Chute but it was bombproof and is probably still being ridden by some tweaker. Here's a link to all the old catalogues:

issuu.com/wastedqba
  • 7 0
 Takes me back to when I had my Ford Focus Kona edition. That classic logo with tire tread side panels. Oh, and the free Blast it came with.
  • 1 0
 @myfriendgoose: Awesome link. Bring back the 90s logos next time Kona!
  • 4 0
 Also Kona Hot 1997 flames graphics... Smile
  • 3 0
 @Connor this bike needs to be on the top step of the podium!
  • 3 0
 @Kimbers: with some luck he can do it!!!
  • 3 0
 Looks so much like the '99 Stab Dee Lux with the curve in the downtube. Wish they had badged it up the same
  • 1 0
 @Jmc1gear: that is so rad, i never knew that was a thing.
  • 6 0
 If Kona sold bikes in this paint job Id buy one quicker than Boris Johnson would suspend parliamentary democracy to push through a no deal Brexit he said would never happen
  • 6 1
 I cannot be the only one who thinks that graphics looked kind of shite back in 2001
  • 2 0
 I had a team edition Explosif steel hardtail with yellow flames w/red pinstrip over lime green frame and that cool Kona font in yellow/red. A red Manitou ti fork, the silverish Mavic rims to match the XT cranks, even the nipples were custom red/yellow/green anodized.....I loved that bike! Looking at that Operator gave me major flashbacks, especially the day I had a super fast OTB and the frame crumpled in three places, even the Manitou arch cracked. No more super cool Explosif.
  • 1 0
 @Jmc1gear: Whoaaaa I forgot about those! So sick.
  • 1 0
 So used to my old Stinkys I didn't notice it was vintage until you pointed it out
  • 1 0
 It looks like a Vintage Stinky, but hopefully it will not break that way :-P
  • 74 7
 If Gwin has his own custom TRP Brake model, then why doesn't he have them drill little holes into the lever when they are made?

It seems to me that the major reason to have a pro model product is so that it can be how that pro wants it. Not so his mechanic can whip out the drill every time a new set turns up.
  • 7 20
flag Yaan (Aug 27, 2019 at 20:44) (Below Threshold)
 John Hall is adding lightness, a lot of racers like it.
  • 66 6
 And why are they being drilled with a hand drill attached to the caliper in the pits a few days before the event? Seems pretty bush league to me....
  • 25 0
 Just realized my TRPs don't work right cause no holes. Thanks!
  • 10 1
 Maybe the drilled holes aren't sanded or flattened adding extra grip?

Who knows.
  • 37 1
 @Yaan: they're speed holes.
  • 7 0
 Pretty sure they’re for grip, not weight
  • 18 3
 @onemind123: it's fluff for photo op.
  • 3 1
 @Yaan: Aerodynamics
  • 11 3
 That's a very safe way to drill something.
  • 6 6
 @Trudeez: i don't think he drills them all the way through.
  • 13 2
 not a pro model brake set, its just a prototype caliper. big difference. There's quite a bit of modding in the pits that goes on at the world cup level that probably isn't practical to manufacture because most of it isn't needed by the us the consumer and won't trickle down to us anyway.
  • 33 3
 @lognar: But this is supposed to be the pinnacle of DH mtb racing. At the premier event. All sorts of time and money spent ahead of time on nice paintjobs.

Why isn't something like lever modification being done in the machine shop.

They are not painting the bikes the night before using a roller.
  • 9 2
 I'm meh with the hole drilling because there is always all kinds of custom things teams do to try and win world champs. More interested in the brake itself and why he would run a prototype at such an important race...considering his history with world champs and prototype brakes in specific...
  • 61 1
 John Hall just likes to drill holes in shit, you're over thinking it.
  • 7 1
 This is World Champs. A lot of modding goes on that wouldn't be done otherwise.
At World Champs, the bike only need to run for one race, not a whole season (allthough racers have spares). It's basically all or nothing. A drilled brake lever likely won't survive a crash, but it doesn't need to. This is also why mechanics do things like remove any seals from linkage bearings before race run and forego wipers on the shocks. All to minimize friction and maximise performance. It might break the components, but it's just one run.
  • 3 2
 @I’d bet he is running it for practice and will swap to tried and true come seeding and race time.
  • 38 0
 The levers come with dimples. He's drilling the bead blast off to get a sharper edge for better grip. It's what pro mechanics do. They make good stuff better.

content.backcountry.com/images/items/900/TRP/TRPA00H/HIGPOLGRE.jpg
  • 4 1
 @shrockie: interesting take. i buy it.
  • 3 1
 Grip. Grip on the brake levers? My pedals have grip. How come? Ah right... A drill, wire tap... It is just logic, kids. These are the Worlds. Just one run. These gloves aren't meant to last forever.
  • 6 0
 These levers already have dimples in them. I'd guess he is drilling them slightly to create sharper edges and therefore more grip. Is isn't drilling them all the way through.

Edit, @shrockie got there first!
  • 7 1
 @Yaan: Can one really add lightness? Lightness is an absence of weight. No need to answer, just a rhetorical.
  • 3 0
 @mm732: exactly, just a bit to make it more grippy, I´ve done the same with my Saint levers some time ago and it have just a bit sharper edges so it´s more sticky
  • 2 0
 With this and Northstar, I think PB has reached peak waaaaah waaaaah waaaaah!
  • 4 2
 I’ve never once thought ‘my index finger doesn’t have enough grip on my brake lever’

Not once ever
  • 2 0
 @Waldon83: Well yeah, the same goes for trigger shifters for me. For grip shift (for the front mech from back when I was using one, or for the Nexus rear hub on the commuter) then yes there are times when the hands are just too frozen or muddy to get enough grip. So yeah sure some pedal spikes there would be helpful and look proper kinky too. For brake levers, trigger shifters and dropper triggers... apparently some riders under some conditions do appreciate some more grip there.

I recall Hope used to (or maybe still do) have drilled brake levers. Indeed drilled all the way through. It makes massive sense if you crash and get back up, to help clear the mud from the brake lever. And for their production method (CNC machining) it isn't all that much of an extra step even for series production. If the brake lever is cast or forged it does add some extra production steps to drill the leverblade under that angle. And in a pro setting where the mechanic drills holes/dimples directly based on rider feedback, doing it the way he does there makes a huge lot of sense. And it is just a huge display of skill and confidence to pull that off under these conditions.
  • 21 3
 He has been relegated to lever drilling to keep him away from things like cranks etc
  • 1 0
 @Waldon83: Happened to me during an XC race when my gloves got wet and the silicon patches on the fingers and thumb lost all grip. Very annoying/unsettling to have your fingers slip off a trigger shifter or feel the brake lever slip. Really wouldn't want that happening on a DH run.
  • 2 0
 @Waldon83: you may not, others may, personal preferences, check Loic´s levers...there is a grip tape on them..
  • 6 2
 Man do you guys have a hard time using a hand drill or something? If you use tools for a living this doesn't really look sketch at all.
  • 1 0
 @Waldon83: You probably aren't going as fast as Aaron Gwin either.
  • 1 0
 Full confession, I'm not as fast as Aaron Gwin. I'm not as fast as most twelve year olds either. Makes sense as to why I don't need holes in my brake levers..... lightbulb !
  • 2 0
 @pretty much what I said but got meg rep. Gotta like the pinkbike clowns
  • 1 0
 @Mattysville: he will be riding the 279 mullet unless something goes wrong with testing this week.
It is not just a 27.5 size rear there are some other things going on that are the result of Aaron's input.
  • 1 0
 @Yaan: Do you need a group hug to feel better about the rep situation?
  • 1 0
 @maybe a Heli drop in whistler and a six pack lol
  • 2 0
 @Yaan: faaack , if we heli drop , all the tesla driving environmentalist pinkbike warriors will neg rep us for using so much fuel
  • 1 0
 @bthomson84

He could have saved all that time/effort drilling and just used one of hundreds of textured/grip tapes available.
  • 1 0
 @foggnm: but why to add something when you can remove a bit?
  • 1 0
 @foggnm: we've established that he was just improving the grip on existing dimples content.backcountry.com/images/items/900/TRP/TRPA00H/HIGPOLGRE.jpg
  • 1 0
 @vroomvroompartystarter: on race day he will have pins in there.
  • 62 3
 That Giant is not worthy of the same coverage these other bikes are getting.
  • 19 2
 Gotta say I agree... Everything else is full custom & Giant made some different colored logo decals.
  • 16 1
 That rocker looks like it came from 1999...
  • 2 7
flag tobiusmaximum (Aug 27, 2019 at 23:56) (Below Threshold)
 @PAmtbiker: it’s Irish livery. Why would they detract from that with a tacky paintjob?
  • 10 0
 Looks good to me Wink
  • 2 2
 @tobiusmaximum: it could hardly look less tacky than it does imo...
  • 2 0
 @theunknowncustodian: so you like it? I like it, I don’t know what the complaints are about...
  • 4 2
 @excavator666: i totally agree, I think it looks good. No need to draw attention from the flag. But I guess a lot of yanks want bells, whistles, a fanfair and a parade on their bikes.
  • 1 1
 Gotta say - pretty similiar to last year Lenzerheide champs
  • 1 0
 They didn’t show the Guinness headtube! It’s on vital’s YouTube vid
  • 1 1
 @tobiusmaximum: don't question the americans - what they say goes...GBTUSA
  • 43 0
 Minnaar’s bike was no where to be seen because it was to long to fit on the plane.
  • 15 0
 The front wheel has arrived.. the back wheel is still in S.A.
  • 1 0
 Their shipping it by aircraft carrier.
  • 34 0
 Screw the glitter - the old Kona font is back!
  • 30 1
 AG is back. Hope he's healthy so we can have some close racing and many in the mix!
  • 5 2
 He’s been out for ages, if he’s straight back on the pace it’ll be very impressive.
  • 27 1
 That Session paint is pure SEX!
  • 11 0
 Best looking one so far!!!
  • 6 3
 semen coating?
  • 3 0
 Pure smoke more like?
  • 2 0
 Where can you buy one of those ribbed chainstay protectors?
  • 1 0
 @moturner: from santa Cruz website. 19.95 shipped. Just got one for my new build.
  • 18 0
 Fearons bike is awesome. Holls bike this year can't compete with her bike last year.
  • 15 1
 Those Intense paint jobs by Jeff Steber are awesome
  • 10 2
 Nah man they are intense....sorry had to do it
  • 1 0
 horses for courses. I think they're the worst looking bikes in the lineup
  • 12 0
 The kona reminds me of a 2001 stab primo.
  • 12 0
 Glad to see the old kona decals!
  • 11 0
 I like the old looking logos on the new operator
  • 4 0
 I think the Kona logo has won this round of Pit Randoms. And it’s unanimous Kona should bring it back full time.
  • 2 0
 @Mattysville: yeah I agree it looked sick then and it still holds up in my eyes
  • 11 0
 Super stoked Neko is doing the raffle again.
  • 1 0
 Absolutely! I want a chance to win that Space Balls edition Intense, and happy my bucks will go to a good cause!
  • 9 1
 Seems like those brake levers would be a bit easier to dill holes in if not installed on the bike.
  • 4 1
 This keeps them from spinning around when the drill seizes. There are other ways to keep this from happening, but this sure is one of them.
  • 4 1
 Considering he's one of the best bike mechanics in the world, I suspect he's pretty intentional about what's a good time to do this.
  • 6 3
 Arron Gwinn is lucky that he is from America, if he was from Britain he would not be able to get injured mid season & come back for Worlds
  • 2 0
 "...A sneak peek of the jungle special from Scott on the bike of Dean Lucas..."

But does it have 'Straya' on the downtube and 'C#nt' on the BB like two(?) years back? Big Grin
  • 4 0
 We doing tech updates or just colours?
  • 3 0
 That Trek in the first pics is one the best color jobs I've seen on a frame..
  • 2 0
 Neko's bike makes me think of Space Balls. What's beyond ludicrous speed? "They've gone to plaid!"

www.youtube.com/watch?v=JBVqygvinzw
  • 1 0
 Wow! Really liking all the custom paint jobs Big Grin

What’s up with Gwin and Mullaly's Fox 49 chrome upper and lower crown? Are they prototypes or are they copying Rockshox now?
  • 2 1
 Being a mechanic at worlds must be so nerve wracking, bikes must be perfectly dialed with so much on the line...high pressure, mad props to those guys!
  • 1 2
 Yet there are always loads of mechanicals and flats. Its a paradox
  • 3 0
 So many glitters and no strippers
  • 4 3
 Am torn with this, I like seeing all the rad bike designs, but it just feels like a monumental waste to build bikes like these for 5 days use
  • 2 0
 Those bikes get a lifetime of abuse in those 5 days though. Also, racers like Neko using these fly rides for a good cause when they auction for charity. I like seeing the "full realization" of a DH bike, and built for the best riders.
  • 2 0
 So far Neko's Lumber Sexual M29 takes the cake for me. Def entering that raffle, I'll grow a beard if I get it.
  • 1 0
 Wonder which bike Gwin will be racing...the one with the fancy paint job or this M279 prototype: www.instagram.com/p/B1tkkg6Fp9h/?igshid=1u6agviq2oxi5
  • 1 0
 It seems like a lot of riders are getting custom paint jobs for every race. What do they do with all of these frames after the race? Do they re- paint them?
  • 1 2
 Giant straight trash looking Gwin better not throw his mechanic under the bus if a lever breaks and says “too many holes were drilled” Treks paint is pure bliss the nicest and cleanest bike so far YT with another great job on holls bike
  • 2 0
 the frames are so gorgeous!!!! Can’t wait to see them in action
  • 3 1
 I'm digging the kona! Bringing back the 2000s
  • 1 0
 It's actually the style from 97 and 98
  • 2 0
 @lacuna: close enough
  • 2 0
 Glitter champs. Is it just me or is glitter all the rage these days?
  • 3 2
 How about we spell her last name correctly - Höll - Ctrl+Shift+: (colon), the letter

It's not f_cking hard.
  • 1 0
 ØK Thanks.
  • 1 2
 We talk about paint jobs but technically they are graphic designs printed on vinyl, for the scott bikes am pretty sure of that. There's a movie of that on there fb page. I think most of the others bikes also.
  • 2 0
 Cush Core does not simply ‘slip inside’ anything, ever.
  • 3 3
 All that work on AG's bike only for him to pull a muscle getting out of bed or break a nail whilst opening a can of RedBull, pointless.
  • 2 0
 Those intense frames looks like an alien design, so futuristic !
  • 1 0
 Cushcore and the bontrager tubeless strip, do you just hate your mechanics?
  • 3 2
 'Full pics not allowed'...uhm journalistic freedom when the pits are open?
  • 8 0
 Don't worry - a full gallery of all the sparkly and shiny paint jobs is on the way.
  • 5 0
 Jenny Rissveds' new bike is a beauty too https://www.instagram.com/p/B1rdxaaCUty/
  • 2 1
 They have a few days more of content to be able to post.
  • 2 0
 Eh it’s a respect thing with the photogs and the teams who also work together on many projects together. If a random person wants to get spy shots go ahead I guess.
  • 3 2
 The Chinese Communist Party extends its dirty reach to mountain biking too
  • 1 0
 @jaame: They harvested my organ.
  • 1 0
 The paint jobs on these look so damn good this year!
  • 1 0
 Be more patriotic, clones.
  • 1 0
 The kona logo is the one they should have kept. Love it!!
  • 1 0
 mark this NSFW some of us cant view this much sex appeal at work!
  • 1 0
 Aluminum E.Thirteen cranks on the Intense bikes?? Hmm....
  • 1 0
 Any info on that Glory's custom-looking upper rocker arm?
  • 1 1
 Metal flake paint is the Tits.
  • 1 1
 Would love to see n smell Dougie's RZ350... two smoke.. Mmmmm
  • 1 1
 And so it begins.....love World Champs
  • 1 1
 That Gambler looks like a Session
  • 1 0
 Blink-blink Bike Theme.
  • 1 0
 Paint it black!
  • 1 3
 So last year be had bikes painted to look like prosthetics, now we have 1980s plastic benchtops?
  • 1 3
 when everything is manufactured in Taiwain your only custom Option is the paintjob, which is done outside, boring......:-(
  • 1 3
 So it is possible for Intense to paint bikes that don't look like they were designed by Stevie Wonder and Bozo the Clown!
  • 1 2
 Plad is Rad!
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