Bike Check: An Italian Privateer's Nukeproof Mega - Superenduro 2019 Pietra Ligure

Apr 8, 2019 at 14:39
by Ben Winder  


I've always wondered what the top pro racers would run on their bikes if they had ultimate freedom from brand connections. The Superenduro is quite a competitive series which brings in a lot of fast riders who don't have any affiliations with brands. I sat down with Igor Palomba, who hails from Sardinia and is a mega fast mountain bike guide just down the road in Finale Ligure. Igor grew up racing downhill and is now giving an enduro race a try in Pietra Ligure. Unfortunately, he'll have to wait for another weekend to find out how he compares to the others in the field, due to the race being canceled.

We took a look through around Palomba's bike and found out why he chose the bike and components he did.


Palomba is riding a medium Nukeproof Mega 29. He likes that when he's attacking on the bike, he feels it wants to go faster, especially in cornering. He likes the way the linkage smooths out the trails and that the bike isn't too expensive.

For suspension, Palomba is riding the entry-level RockShoxYari Charger RC. He says that while it isn't top of the line, the fork performs well when it's kept up to service. He's also running the stock shock that came on his frame, a RockShox Super Deluxe Air.

Handling bar and stem duties are Renthall's 30mm rise Fatbar and a Duo stem at 40mm. Coming from his DH background, he likes having higher bars on his bike and that makes him more comfortable. They are cut to 760mm as that fits his height and his shoulders aren't too wide.

Stock grips on the bars. Palomba likes their soft compound and the smaller size fit his hands well. He also likes to ride with his hands right on the edge of the bars and these grips only have the inner clamp, making that more comfortable.
GRIPS

Palomba bought these wheels because he believes they hold up well under his use as a guide in Finale - the rims are strong and the bearings are good in his experience.


For tires, there's a DHR on the front because he thinks it rolls faster and the side knobs are the same as the DHF. There's an EXO casing to save some weight. On the back, he has the Aggressor. Palomba likes its grip in all conditions from dusty to wet. In Finale, there are a lot of rocks so he's using a Double Down casing on that tire. It gives a little more protection for the rear wheel and it holds its shape a little bit better than the EXO casing. There's also a Huck Norris tire insert in the back to help with holding the shape.


Shimano's XT M8020 four-piston brakes are taking care of stopping duties. Palomba has used the two-piston version before but didn't feel they had enough power, especially with 29" wheels.

Yes indeed, that's a homemade chainguide.

Most of the drivetrain is stock. There's a 30t ring on the front mated to an 11-46 cassette.

Pedals are Nukeproof Horizon, Palomba says "I ride in and I just clicked with these. I like the design and feel of them. They're also pretty cheap and I've not had any problems with them."

Igor practicing the fourth stage in Pietra Ligure



60 Comments

  • 207 0
 Most sensible bike check ever. Buy something reasonable, keep it relatively stock, keep it clean and take care of it. Then go shred the shit outta it.
  • 28 1
 Yeah! Loved this... more please Smile
  • 3 2
 @mtbikeaddict: I've been looking for this model second hand for the past few weeks. Just can't seem to find a large one!
  • 19 0
 I recall a poll last year asking how much people spend on a new bike and $3-4K won. It would be lovely if more reviews/ first looks/ etc. on the site took this into account.
  • 16 12
 @Konyp: I'm so tired of this argument. I want to see ferrari's and lamborghini's in my car magazines not camry's and accord's.
  • 7 1
 @employee7: Me too, but cars are a bit different given most of the arts are bespoke. On bikes, they all have a SRAM or Shimano drivetrain. They all have Fox or RockShox forks. It's just not that interesting is it? I know everything has stabilised for the better, but reading "the xx1 gears were flawless" for the umpteenth time is a bit of a yawn fest, or at least it would be if I bothered to read it every time.
  • 3 0
 @employee7: Sure, but there is a place for everything. Its nice to look at some bling, but I will never buy a 5K bike to crash it into trees and have it squashed at the airport. I would like Pinkbike to help me make an informed purchase decision. Currently for this sort of thing I have to look to other sites.
  • 1 0
 the DT Swiss e1900s are an underrated wheelset for their cost. mine are going into their 3rd year. just did bearings in the hubs yesterday for the first time
  • 1 1
 @employee7: Well yeah, but car mags have both... exotic hypercars to drool over, and a sensible civilian vehicles section to compare and make decisions. I'd like bike to be similar.
  • 2 1
 @employee7: go look at a car magazine then.
  • 1 0
 bocca al lupo Igor!
  • 47 0
 "I just clicked with these" - Nukeproof Horizon Pedals. He'll make a proud dad one day with comments like that!
  • 36 0
 Finally a bike review for without XX1, XTR.
  • 13 0
 Yeah exactly. I love XTR and I quite like XX1, but for the sake of variety it's nice that not every bike review has one or the other. I mean yes, pros use the best stuff, and bike companies all want PB to test the top spec bikes. It would be cool if you guys could turn this into a series, or a regular feature @pinkbike. Ride guides, high level amateur racers. People at the top end of the skills spectrum who buy their own bikes.
  • 5 0
 I had the exact same thought when I saw the photo with the SLX crank. It would be great to see more reviews of mid range bikes.
  • 3 1
 @Ferds: SLX cranks have always been the gem of Shimano's product line.
  • 24 1
 That is pretty sweet to see an "authentic" bike check. Clearly he is focused on getting the best value, a good balance of cost and performance in this case. It sounds like he is a really capable rider and needs his equipment to simply work to support both his guiding and racing ambitions. More of these please.
  • 14 0
 He was my guide when i was in finale last year. Super nice dude. All those guides talked a lot of shit on carbon bikes. Saying they wouldn’t last 2 months as a guide in finale.
  • 15 0
 More bike checks like this please!! Affordable spec'd with clever upgrades.....
  • 13 0
 Igor is the best Guide in Finale and he is fast as Hell. Great Bike Mate.
  • 1 0
 @nanon which compagny does he works for?
  • 2 0
 @Cocorico: Finale Bikers, super nice guy.
  • 8 0
 Similar kinda spec to what a lot of PBers will be riding I imagine. It's pretty cool to see how a rider can be sensible about component choices and race at a too level. It shows you how good nearly all MTB stuff is these days. Best of luck to you Igor
  • 10 0
 Cool bikecheck... more of these please!
Bikes for people that don´t get shit free ... way to go
  • 9 4
 The Aggressor ist one one the most underrated tires imo, especially in the DD version it is tough grips well damps well rolls well and is still sub 1kg in the 2.3 27.5 version. its my reartire on every bike i actually take to the woods.
  • 3 3
 Overrated, people make out like it is dh worthy, maybe ok for a trail bike, would take a dhr2 over it anyday.
  • 3 2
 the aggressor is absolute shit unless you ride somewhere super dry rocky.
  • 1 0
 Agreed, but I think it’s very conditions specific
I live in Colorado and ride here, Utah, New Mexico, Wyoming.... it’s a great tire for the dirt and trails here, def my go to tire.

When I go to BC, I always put a dhr2 on.
  • 1 0
 @pdb18: since a few years it basically stopped raining here in the summer, so yes i use it mostly on dry trails ( with not much grip). I dont think it is bad in the wet either, in the mud- well the knobs are not very high. Funny how people complain about it not being a dh tire for wet conditions when in fact it is an enduro tire for mostly dry conditions.
  • 5 0
 I always admire "workhorse" bikes like this.
...Bikes and parts that are selected for their VALUE rather than being based on bike bro fashion. Deep down, it probably feels pretty cool for him to look at a race results and know that smoked a bunch of factory dudes on his scratched up aluminum whip with SLX crank arms. PROPS Igor!
  • 3 0
 www.youtube.com/watch?v=qxB0kLsm9jQ

here is a video, he is guiding the group. the rider behind the lense is a really fast and skilled german dh racer.
there is also part one on his channel.
  • 4 0
 there is no mention of the sunrace cassette on the bike. How is it holding up?
  • 6 0
 tried these out just recently... holds up well. was 20€ cheaper than an XT and a bit lighter too
  • 2 0
 Been on a 12 speed 11-50 for a few months, woild take it anyday over a sram gx 12 speed
  • 5 1
 Love it. A solid blue-collar build with a focus on reliability, performance and durability. All the best Igor!
  • 2 1
 I can see his homemade chain guide is a 'quick release" clasp style trs guide with a screw through it to hold it together as its broken like mine and every other one i have seen out in the wild..highly like the worst mtb product ever produced.
  • 1 0
 He is the best guide I had in Finale! Such a good rider and also very smart when choosing the trails. And nice build. Keep it simple and ride it like you stole it Wink Better than riders who buy > 6k bikes and ride them carefully so they don't scratch them Smile
  • 3 0
 "Nukeproof Mega - Superenduro 2019 Pietra Ligure".....sounds like a race track that should be in Forza7...lemme check. Haha
  • 2 1
 Nice! a real bike check for the real people! Not expensive and stronger that's the real life not everyone have too much money for the expansive parts for his bike. I like and i want more similar bike check!
  • 3 1
 Its just nice to see a real world bike with scratches on it, let alone a few lower end parts.
  • 2 2
 mid range/low end doesnt nesscarily mean bad on bikes nowdays.
  • 4 1
 Respect the Yari. Loved mine and nice and simple.
  • 1 0
 Does he have any custom tuning in his suspension? A yari with a custom damper tune would probably be 98% of the performance you could get out of any high end fork.
  • 3 1
 GRANDE IGOR!! good luck for the race Smile
  • 3 3
 Since he's not a large guy, maybe the wheels will hold up for a while. Also this article seems like paid advertising because that's basically the stock bike.
  • 2 2
 give props to a bike or product, get downvoted..... bash a bike or product with witty comment, get upvoted. fucking PB universes.
  • 3 2
 That sunrace cassette doesn’t look stock.
  • 1 0
 I was gonna say...that red carrier gave it away.
  • 3 1
 Daje er gasse
  • 1 1
 Thats awesome! Thanks for listening PB. Good Luck Igor! Hope the next race is not canceled...
  • 1 0
 I own this bike with a real similar build. Hate that shock though.
  • 2 1
 good looking bike
  • 2 1
 grandissimo!!!!
  • 2 1
 Feel the love Igor
  • 2 1
 dacci dentro!
  • 2 1
 Great
  • 2 1
 Right on
  • 2 1
 Great bike check.
  • 1 0
 Vai Igor!!!
  • 1 0
 Sweet Ride!!

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