HOW WE TESTED AT THE 2020
PINKBIKE FIELD TEST
Brand new bikes. Real riders. Proper terrain.
Words by Brian Park, photography by Trevor Lyden & Brian Park
To put our findings from the 2020 Pinkbike Field Test into context, we wanted to give you a look at some of the terrain, test tracks, and processes we used. The goal is to make the results of this year's test as transparent, accurate, and useful as possible.
Timed Testing NotesWhile it's fun and useful to compare timing, we recognize it's a flawed metric with countless variables. For each timed test result we did multiple laps at ~80% effort, with as much consistent line choice as possible. In each category the bikes had Maxxis control tires with the same tire casing.
For the Downcountry lap we had a full loop, but for the Trail and Enduro category we did the testing on some descending-only segments in the Whistler Bike Park. Our reasoning was that wanted to maximize our descending time, because descending capability is often harder to judge compared to climbing and pedalling efficiency.
Also, if we'd done full loops on the trail bikes it would have blown out the testers' legs—for example, Kaz would have had to do at least 27 timed laps with climbing, which would have made his later timed tests less accurate. And finally, don't forget that timing is just one of many ways to judge a bike, and the fastest bike for us doesn't always mean it's the fastest bike for everyone.
If you haven't seen them yet, check out the 2020 Field Test features we've released so far here
We'll be back tomorrow with an Editors' Choice round table to tell you our favourite (and least favourite) bikes in the Trail category, before we dive into the Downcountry and Enduro bikes.
A massive thank you to Maxxis for providing the tires, Rocky Mountain for loaning our photo and video crew some eMTBs, Elite for the extra bottle cages, and GoPro for the POV cameras. And finally, thank you to Stan and Ella for putting us up and feeding us endless amounts of Polish food.