The Latest Tech From the Mont Sainte Anne DH World Cup - Does Weight Matter?

Aug 4, 2022
by Henry Quinney  

Welcome to the Canadian round of the 2022 DH World Cup. It might be getting to the later stages of the season, but that doesn't mean there aren't new bikes to cover.

In a world of carbon frames and exotic materials, we ask, “Can a downhill bike be too light?”


139 Comments

  • 98 2
 I like your jokes Henry
  • 48 1
 Same here.
  • 9 20
flag ryanandrewrogers (Aug 4, 2022 at 0:38) (Below Threshold)
 I'm not positive it was a joke but when Henry said the Intense proto has seen more "refinement" lol had me in stitches! That thing just gets uglier and uglier!
  • 26 0
 @ryanandrewrogers: Seems to be getting faster and faster though, which is what matters.
  • 2 3
 @justanotherusername: don't disagree, but that would be more akin to improvement rather than "refinement", no? the old m29 prototype wasn't pretty either, but the "refined" production bike was a good, arguably great, looker
  • 4 0
 @ryanandrewrogers: the definition of refinement is ‘to improve something’

I’m not sure anyone is suggesting this is a production ready bike we are seeing.
  • 3 4
 @justanotherusername: Lighten up some jeez. I'm just sayin' it getting uglier alongside apparently becoming more "refined" was ironic, and made me laugh.
  • 6 0
 The US state of Canada was slipped in so sly.
  • 48 0
 Pick a weight, and be a weenie about it
  • 42 0
 Lyle def comes from the Ratboy lineage
  • 2 0
 they had a rebel "received pronunciation" teacher union it seems ; )
  • 30 1
 Skirting dangerously close to actual journalism, Henry, good job.

Now, I know you chaps have enough to do so this is just out of curiosity not a demand for content, but what's happening with the Bucket Boys' Downhill from Here podcast?
  • 6 0
 Agree. I was waiting to hear about Ami’s success !
  • 8 0
 we're in a pb podcast drought @mikelevy
  • 7 0
 I need me some bucket boys. The shitter the audio the better
  • 2 0
 @Killerfox: exactly! Will have to wait for the documentary. Enjoying their antics on Instagram, looks like the team's having a lot of fun, almost don't want to disturb them. Almost.
  • 3 0
 @melonhead1145: I'm now listening to other podcast through my phone speaker with it in an empty pint glass for that same comforting experiences.
  • 2 0
 I've heard a rumor that since they are not in Europe, the van they have on the North American swing has much better acoustics and they felt it ruined the Bucket Boys experience...
  • 8 0
 Haha! Basically, we recorded one at 11PM of travel day. The file corrupted so we threw the machine out the window and gave up. Sadly, I'm not joking. We'll be back this weekend.
  • 28 2
 Maybe I’m just a snowflake consumer, but I can’t help but feel a little insulted Forbidden wouldn’t even speak with Henry on camera, but the moment they announce that bike they will want our undivided attention (and money). In a day and age where companies attempt to generate interest and conversation about an upcoming product, I can’t help but wonder what their media and marketing strategy is here…
  • 15 2
 Agree 100% and these companies hiding their development is odd to me. Are companies really copying each other that much? Plus it looks like Forbidden just has an upside down 4 bar which is not revolutionary.
  • 3 0
 @Rigidjunkie: I think that it's more than just marketing. For marketing, hiding a development bike is like the forbidden (sorry) fruit. Drives interest in the brand to have the public know that they are developing something, but not be able to really see it. On the other hand, a lot of these companies need to sell bikes to be able to fund the development of new bikes. So if the public knows about an upcoming model, they may not purchase the current model. This is bad if the company has inventory it is sitting on. So trying to hide the development of new bikes can be beneficial.
as far as not speaking on camera, they might just be jerks, or they might just be busy with race preparations. who knows.
  • 3 0
 @Spencermon: The flip side is if the customers don't have any idea what's on the way they might just buy someone else's bike and never return to the brand. There's an old saying along the lines of "it's better to steal your own customers than let another company steal them".
  • 1 0
 @Mike-Jay: very true. It's a difficult scenario no matter which way you go.
  • 25 3
 We can claim MSA? I’ll take it, thanks Canada!
  • 38 15
 We should take the Whistler side. Less French to learn.


Can I say that without being canceled?
  • 3 0
 What is the deal with the America, Canada and the French? I'm having a hard time to understand the intro. Big Grin
  • 10 0
 @editor: Mount Saint Anne is in the country of Canada not the US. Super duper close. Canadians speak English, but this portion is in Quebec, which is a French speaking portion of Canada.

I am also an American speaking about how things are done in Canada. But I can tell you MSA is not in America.

I think Henry gets this a bit confused, or is he making a joke. I don’t know.
  • 1 0
 @slayersxc17: Thanks for that!
  • 2 0
 @slayersxc17: when traveling in the far northeastern reaches of the Sierra Madre Oriental, keep your Taiwanese blade close
  • 15 1
 @slayersxc17: MSA is in America. Its not in the United States.
  • 2 0
 @hbar314: Yes, it is in North America and not the US, I agree.
  • 5 0
 @editor: quick clarification. MSA is in North America the continent. Not in the United States of America. This is very embarrassing because I am literally a cartographer as my job. I just didn’t make that clear.
  • 5 1
 @slayersxc17: Cartography is still a job?? I guess we still have lands to discover. Power on, Mercator!
  • 4 0
 @slayersxc17: He's joking about how Americans display their flag much more than most countries and that the Intense tent is flying the American flag in Canada.
  • 5 0
 @dfiler: You don't have to say tent twice. In the tents they were flying a flag.
  • 1 0
 @Vudu74: I dunno, I heard more French than English the last time I was in Whistler...
  • 3 0
 @rrolly: "obviously the blue is the land" Buster Bluth
  • 2 0
 @Mike-Jay: anything goes at bath time
  • 17 2
 Contrary to what we've been fed for decades, a low CG doesn't make a bike maneuverable, it makes it stable. Moto GP found this out way back in the '80s. You want mass to rotate, not move laterally during cornering transitions. Too low, and it becomes difficult to move quickly, which equals stability. Off topic, maybe, but there, I said it.
  • 6 0
 You're correct, but the CG of a motorcycle is already much lower than a mountain bike since a mountain bike is a fraction of the weight of the rider. Mountain bikes seem to corner better with lower BB heights probably because of the stability you mentioned. Anyone who has ridden older style bikes with higher BB's can attest to them snapping into corners almost too quickly for the speed we ride DH these days, leading to grip lost and an unsteady feeling in the turns
  • 21 0
 With Moto GP bikes, the tyre width introduces significant lateral movement of the contact patch as the bike rolls (leans into a corner). This complicates things because the movement of the contact patch towards the direction of lean reduces the torque acting to pull the bike towards the ground, especially with a lower CG. However, with a bicycle, the tyres are much narrower and lean angles are much less, and so that effect can be ignored. A higher CG increases the roll inertia, which means it takes longer to change the lean angle in order to initiate a turn or change direction; but by the same coin, if the tyres are knocked off-line, the change in roll angle is less, making it easier to correct. In other words, the bicycle is less twitchy with a higher CG.

Adding weight to the frame is more about increasing the rigid sprung mass, which can improve suspension sensitivity. However, 300 g is probably negligible (about 3% of the rigid sprung mss), so it's really about placebo in that case IMO. Adding 3 Kg makes a significant difference.
  • 13 1
 Welcome to 2022, where so many shit companies completely ignore all your attempts to call them, whilst repeatedly playing you recorded messages about how important your call is to them when you try. The airline industry's incompetence at the moment will probably do more for carbon emissions than legislation ever could.
  • 16 1
 I hope you get your bike back jordi
  • 11 1
 Fantastic content @henryquinney. More of this kinda stuff please! More tech, less paintjobs and socials Smile
  • 4 1
 . . . and less jokes about Canada being part of the US. We're socially fragile here. . .
  • 10 0
 my 2001 Schwinn Straight 8 = 42lbs
  • 4 0
 That was a cool bike
  • 1 0
 same weight as my db8 when stock.
  • 10 0
 My 2022 norco range = 41lbs
Such progress this sport has made.
  • 3 2
 @Davidsym: my 2014 Specialized Enduro Comp in alloy (the cheapest version) was 27lb.
  • 3 0
 my 03 Large Yeti DH9 with shivers was 48lbs, and i know have a 98 Sintesi Bazooka with Monsters that i havent wheigh yet but must be real close to that too
  • 1 0
 @Davidsym: Yikes, that's rough. My 2019 Polygon DH9 is 32lbs.
  • 1 0
 @mior: yeah but vintage Dh bikes are so cool... i use my Sintesi all the time mate. Also have a 05 GT Dhi thats heavy as ...
  • 1 0
 @hbar314: thats about what my Transition Patrol is. 2015 model
  • 2 1
 @panaphonic: lol my 22 stumpy evo alloy is 35lbs
  • 7 4
 Bikes should be as light as possible. In every other branch of cycling and motor sport everyone wants to make their kit lighter. Minnar even knew how heavy the paint was on his world champs bike because it was lighter than normal paint. It’s about time enters used engineering to keep the strength high and the weight low rather than just using more material
  • 15 3
 Making lighter DH bikes won't make faster DH bikes so why bother? Motorsport/Cycling is significantly different because the car/motorcycle/roadie does not use gravity to propel itself forward.

Engineers are, and should be, more concerned with suspension kinematics and geometry. What slows down the gravity-propelled bike is the obstacles it must overcome, so engineers are justifiably more interested in creating bikes that more successfully mitigate these obstacles.
  • 2 1
 Many Enduro bikes are heavier than DH bikes and there is a good reason for that,to win a race you must finish the race...
So, any bike racer would choose "heavy" tires or beefier parts if the team car is not 200 meters away with a new bike. You can´t swap a wheel in an EWS stage,if you flat in XC is almost game over,same thing in DH.
For non pros,bikes need to be capable of taking a crash and survive 0 problem and parts cant take the abuse over and over are a waste of money.
So no need for light DH bikes,I would add tires are getting beefier&heavy so we can see people full blasting a rock garden and finishing the race.
  • 6 2
 @homerjm: so why do xc riders make them as light as possible then? Also you are confusing heavy with strong. It’s easy to make something stronger by just using more material anyone can do that. It’s engineering that makes things stronger and lighter at the same time
  • 5 0
 @ryanandrewrogers: of course geometry and kinematics are important. I’m not suggesting they aren’t. But find me a human powered sport where they want to make the kit heavier than necessary.
  • 1 4
 @chrismac70: I do not think XC riders choose every part just for the weight,that is a thing for Dangerholm bikes.
Tires are getting more realistic for what users do with them,that is why are getting heavy,cos we need more rubber in the tire,more ply,more sidewall support and more grip,not a lighter tire than before.
Same thing for DH and Enduro frames and build kits in general,it is no worth in making a bike lighter if the bike would came in pieces in 2 rides.
That light as possible thing is old now and in many cases is not beneficial to DH or Enduro,even XC racing.
  • 3 0
 @homerjm: why do we? The trails haven’t changed near me in 20 years as I don’t live near a bike park. The descents are the same so why do I not need a bike 2kg heavier than I did then. It didn’t break then so won’t now. The whole point of god engineer is that you can have stronger and lighter
  • 2 0
 @chrismac70: I wouldn't describe DH as a "human-powered sport", as I mentioned before I'd say that gravity is what primarily powers a DH bike, the rider controls that power. As far as priorities go on a DH bike: #1 is kinematics/geo (frame design/cockpit), #2 is traction (provided by tires+suspension+brakes), #3 is adaptability (tuning/servicing), #4 is durability (DNF to mechanical can ruin a season), and then #5 is weight.

The winningest bikes of the last few seasons have been quite heavy (looking at you Commencal Supreme) because they frequently sacrifice weight for the other 4 priorities.

This is best embodied by how every WC rider chooses to run the heaviest casing DH tires despite only needing them for a single run- they would rather sacrifice that performance weight advantage for simple reliability.
  • 2 0
 @chrismac70: Of course, those priorities would be re-organized if you are participating in a different discipline. You are describing a regular trail ride. In this situation, you can prioritize weight over durability/adaptability because you beat up your stuff less and frequent similar trails with similar conditions
  • 1 0
 @chrismac70: My local trails eat bikes literally.Years ago any Enduro or DH run would have some flats involved,so a ton of waste time no ridding your bike and messing whit tubes and tubeless fluid.
XC bikes of 10 years ago where lighter than bikes today are winning races.Is no secret,but the sport is not the same anymore.
Bikes have advanced a ton and weight in many cases is not the main focus,cos the performance gains of new geo,new materials and so had by far more impact in bike development than weight.
For a trail or XC bike on mellow trails,or riders do not charge very hard I see the thing of weight but when durability is compromised to me is a bad deal.
"stronger and lighter" means nothing,to some guys a 2,3 kg wheelset would be ok,for some others a no way. I think I have a good compromise in my bike without breaking the bank.
It is not the same a 600g 26" xc tire than a 600g 29" xc tire.To me,the key question is the speed and versatility of modern bikes demands more capable components to match that demand.
  • 5 0
 I know loads like to moan but there’s been a heap of quality PB video content, all the World Cup coverage has been excellent!
  • 3 0
 Jordi's comments on weight seemed contradictory to me. So it makes no difference, but in testing they measured the difference and also you could feel the difference?
  • 39 0
 You can tell because of the way it is.
  • 29 0
 They Don't Think It Be Like It Is But It Do
  • 14 1
 I think he was saying “yes you can feel/measure it, but it’s no difference for speed”
  • 3 0
 I think Jordi is having hard time to explain something that is different from rebound and compression.
  • 2 1
 They make sense to me at least. The suspension only cares about the weight of the entire system, rider+bike. However, anyone who has ridden a bike that is + or - 5lbs of their own knows that it gives a very different ride quality, despite that difference being very small relative to the total weight of themselves on it.
  • 2 0
 @ryanandrewrogers: the bikes suspension may only care about the system, but your arms and legs provide a lot of suspension too. Whether the bike is moving around under you or you are lifting it up (as in, unweighting the wheels while riding) if it is suddenly 20% heavier or lighter that is going to throw your muscle memory and timing right off. Its like you need to adjust the compression damping of your muscles.
  • 2 0
 @AyJayDoubleyou: Exactly. That is the ride quality difference explained right there basically. I suspect the riders like having a bit more weight in the bike because it keeps the bike stable in the specific situation they are unweighted but still on the ground (such as in the moment before pulling up for a rock garden gap). In this scenario, the bike's own weight is what determines how easily obstacles deflect its trajectory. Pretty null effect on the suspension still.
  • 5 0
 Good vid henry, glad PB is hiring euro's like you and ben Wink
  • 1 0
 I remember recently seeing a photo article on Pinkbike that showed that someone had added lead flashing to their bike... so I would guess the answer is yes? Other than acceleration when on the pedals, I've never really understood why weight is a focus in DH. Yeah, the bike needs to be maneuverable, but not at the cost of performance.

Final photo in the article:
www.pinkbike.com/news/tech-randoms-and-track-walk-lenzerheide-dh-world-cup-2022.html
  • 4 0
 Matters about as much as your girlfriends weight but they’re all fun to ride, just have to adjust your technique
  • 2 0
 oh this is so right.
  • 4 0
 that was really good henry
  • 3 0
 I do have to say that Jordi is a god. Grumpy, knows his stuff and the patience of a Saint.
  • 3 2
 What "fine art" are they rambling about? They dont really do anything to tune weight. They just ramble on saying the same mantras about twitchiness va stability without any facts or tests to back it up.
  • 6 4
 I must have missed when Canada was annexed by the US. Gotta love Jordi saying it like it is ☺️
  • 1 0
 I missed it too. I guess no border check anymore. I’ll be up to ride soon.
  • 2 0
 I can't make out what he's even saying with that insanely thick Scottish accent!
  • 2 0
 Forbidden - clearly so in every way, nothing to see here
  • 1 0
 hey henry. thanks to you and ben spending some time chatting with me at snowshoe. love the content. bucket boys for life.
  • 4 6
 I wasn't going to comment, as Henry's comments were obviously tongue-in-cheek... but it's been kinda bouncing around in my head for a bit. The thing is, I can't quite understand why Henry would want to go around poking the nationalist hornets nest? As a newcomer to Canada, especially someone who lives (I think) on the west coast, you could be cut a little slack for it. But coming from a Brit, (you know, the colonists and colonialists) it kinda sticks in your craw if you are a francophone. I'm not upset or angry (and who cares if I am), but just a friendly word of advice and maybe be a bit more... aware [or maybe sensitive?], of what you're saying, to whom, and where you are when you do? just sayin'
  • 2 0
 Great video @henryquinney and PB team. Thank you
  • 6 5
 36-38lbs is the magic spot..
  • 3 2
 Sub 30lb is better if you actually have to pedal the bike
  • 2 0
 Make 'tache great again
  • 1 0
 Feeling the moustache envy during the John Hall segment @henryquinney
  • 5 4
 Pretty sure Canada is not part of USA?
  • 4 0
 100% correct. Cool country though, wish we could hangout more.
  • 1 0
 stanchions on the black box looks thicker.. ???
  • 1 0
 Waiting for Peaty to ring in...
  • 1 0
 does size matter?
  • 1 0
 Yes
  • 1 0
 No it's how you use it
  • 1 0
 Not how you use it
  • 4 6
 Lyle is right. My 55lb eeb is absolutely planted. I guess those who ride xc style terrain prefer a light bike though.
  • 1 0
 But he does not like Sessions!
  • 17 19
 Give me an aluminum bike all day long, f*** carbon
  • 9 5
 What is alley-min-yum?
  • 26 1
 @PHX77: What is Aloooominum?
  • 5 0
 I like the feeling of vibrations transmitted through carbon better than through aluminum. Different frequencies.
  • 12 2
 @Jvisscher: All about that bass, no treble.
  • 5 1
 Only steel is real mate !
  • 1 0
 Preach
  • 3 6
 written article?
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