Bike Checks: Comparing Jesse Melamed & Remi Gauvin's Rocky Mountain Altitudes - EWS Pietra Ligure 2020

Sep 19, 2020 at 9:43
by Ed Spratt  
Rocky Mountain Altitude
Photos: Matthew Delorme


The EWS is back this weekend for its second of three rounds in 2020. After the Rocky Mountain team were riding around in Zermatt on a 'secret' new bike the 2021 Altitude has now been revealed, so let's take a look at how Jesse Melamed and Remi Gauvin choose to run their race bikes and what differences there are between their setups.


Rocky Mountain Altitude
Jesse Melamed
Height 170 cm/ 5'7"
Weight 68kg / 152lbs
Instagram @jessemelamed

Bike Details
Frame Size Medium (Custom Ride9 Chip)
Wheel Size 29"
Suspension Fox 38 (170mm // 44mm Offset // 80psi // 2 Tokens) and Fox DHX (425lb Spring)
Drivetrain & Brakes Shimano XTR
Cockpit RaceFace and OneUp
Wheels & Rubber RaceFace and Maxxis

Rocky Mountain Altitude
Remi Gauvin
Height 177cm / 5'10"
Weight 80kg / 180 lb
Instagram: @remi.the.semi

Bike Details
Frame Size Large (Ride9 setting 2)
Wheel Size 29"
Suspension Fox 38 (170mm // 44mm Offset // 102psi // 3 Tokens) and Fox DHX (500lb Spring)
Drivetrain & Brakes Shimano XTR
Cockpit RaceFace and OneUp
Wheels & Rubber RaceFace and Maxxis

Rocky Mountain Altitude

bigquotesWe are in a unique position because what we ride at home is just really sick. So basically you ride at home and the bike that you want to ride is more supportive so it supports you in the corners and traction isn’t really as much of a goal because the dirt is so good.

So you come to Europe and generally, there is less traction, it is chunkier and it is sketchier. You are less comfortable so you tend to need a more reactive bike that is focused more on the traction. Because you are never able to push that hard here where you need the support because there is just less traction and the corners are less built up.

We end up going quite a bit softer when we are in Europe compared to at home. I took out five psi in the fork since coming here and less compression and things like that. It is definitely a steep learning curve, especially on a new bike when you haven’t raced it in Europe yet. You get here and you have to just start again.
Remi

Rocky Mountain Altitude
Rocky Mountain Altitude

Rocky Mountain Altitude
Jesse is running a custom Ride9 chip but Remi has gone back to the standard chip after initially using the custom offering.

bigquotesBasically we had spent a lot of time on the Slayer, nearly all of winter, we were planning on racing that for the first two rounds then we would be on this bike. Getting on this bike and any new bike it is very difficult to dial in and find your place on it really. We were kind of struggling to set it up so we asked for a position between 2 and 3 as we liked parts of three and we liked parts of two and then it just happened that it was the exact leverage curve of the Slayer so that's maybe why we quickly felt comfortable with it. Jesse

Rocky Mountain Altitude
Rocky Mountain Altitude

Rocky Mountain Altitude
Rocky Mountain Altitude
The new Altitude has a flip chip that can adjust the chainstay length - Remi and Jesse have a custom one that splits the difference between the long and short position.

Rocky Mountain Altitude
While both riders are using the same Shimano XTR drivetrain Jesse runs a 45 tooth cassette over the large 50 tooth that Remi has on his bike.

Rocky Mountain Altitude
Rocky Mountain Altitude
One of the few differences when it comes to their cockpit setup are Jesse's cut down grips for his smaller hands.

Rocky Mountain Altitude
Rocky Mountain Altitude
Jesse chooses to run the Mallet E pedals (right) whereas Remi chooses the Mallet DH.

Rocky Mountain Altitude

Rocky Mountain Altitude
Rocky Mountain Altitude

Rocky Mountain Altitude
Both riders run the same bar and stem combo with a 35mm bar rise and 40mm stem. But Jesse opts for a 740mm bar over Remi's 760mm width.

Rocky Mountain Altitude



88 Comments

  • 88 5
 A lot of good details in here but a lot left out as well. Crank length? Chain ring size? Dropper length? Tire pressure? Headset spacers? Doesn't seem like too much additional work to get these details.

Pinkbike should have a template for bike checks so that ALL of the details are covered off.
  • 12 0
 Both are evidently running Works angle-adjusting headsets on a 2021 frame. Hmm.

(It's awesome that Rocky uses a headset standard where this is an option though.)
  • 10 0
 Bubble gum preference! COMMON PINKBIKE, ask the hard hitting questions!!!
  • 111 0
 170mm cranks for both.
32t ring for me and 34t for Remi because he has the bigger cassette.
175mm dropper post for both.
19psi for me. 22-24 for Remi.
Headset spacers: yes.
  • 25 0
 @JesseMelamed:

Ask and jesse will provide. Good luck today bro
  • 2 2
 The only thing I care about is who would win in a fist fight and I think Jesse would whoop that ass.
  • 2 0
 @skylerd: good spotting. This goes to Yoanns comment about the grim donut and bikes just for racing.
  • 36 4
 What the heck? Custom ride 9 position, custom chainstay length... Why the hell did Rocky created these adjustability if their athletes don't even use and like them.


Also really weird to have an altitude 170/160 when you have a Slayer 170/170 with a similar leverage curve as Jesse said.

Weird decisions from Rocky. But the bike stills looks nice!
  • 12 9
 Not everyone is a pro athlete riding at extreme speeds down world-class enduro tracks. Plus, not everyone is between 5'7 and 5'10 and 150-185lbs.
  • 20 4
 @shredjekyll: I think you're underestimating how many people in BC are that size and really, really fast. The new slayer has been really popular on the north shore and I suspect the people riding at that level will continue to pick it as their weapon of choice.
  • 14 5
 @shredjekyll: it is true. Not everyone is between 5'7 and 5'10 and 150-185lbs. Maybe some people are and i'll go out on a limb and say maybe they are. Maybe they're not. But mostly they might be either in the they are or they are not category.
  • 29 7
 @drakefan705: I think you are overestimating your riding compared to EWS pros...
  • 9 1
 @lumpy873: while I get where you're coming from there are a ridiculous number of expert level riders out here who might have similar preferences. Rocky would be wise to offer these pieces in the aftermarket.
  • 12 17
flag nvranka (Sep 19, 2020 at 15:17) (Below Threshold)
 @lumpy873: lmfao always a Jerry around to chime in and let us know we aren’t pros. Good on you budday
  • 4 0
 I think it’s just fascinating that the bike comes with so much customizability and yet they manage to customize it further. I think it says a lot of the bike and platform.
  • 21 0
 Slayer is for partying, Altitude is for business.
  • 18 0
 @nickkozak: I think this comment wins.
  • 12 0
 What's cool is you can pick whichever one you want!
  • 5 1
 @drakefan705: Yes there is "really, really fast" and then top ten EWS fast. There is still a significant gap and there is no point producing frame angles that only work for 0.1% of the population when riding at race speeds.
  • 1 0
 @friendlyfoe: maybe if RM gets enough interest... The rear piece probably wouldn't be too hard to make for a machinist... I've often thought about talking to some people I know about doing a middle setting on the MinoLink on my Slash...
  • 13 1
 Forget about the bikes for a second and let's compare their footwear please
  • 10 1
 If frodo baggins shaved his feet would he look like Jesse on holiday?
  • 10 0
 @Ryanfitz81: I'd say Jesse is running a slow rebound on his flip flops. And no tokens at all.
  • 12 0
 @southoftheborder: they're blown and need a service either way
  • 1 0
 @JesseMelamed: then it's time to ask Fox for kashima-coated toe straps while they're servicing them ;-).
  • 2 0
 @southoftheborder: That would be smooth!
  • 7 0
 One thing aluminum cranks have over carbon is how cool they look when they've been properly worn in and buffed down to raw with shoe rub. Their cranks have been properly loved.
  • 8 0
 Very loved.
  • 1 0
 I thought I was the only person who loved that. I have a near new crank sitting in a box, but I keep that worn to hell one on my bike.
  • 7 0
 Crank length always left out of these bike checks . Geeks need to know , ya know?
  • 7 0
 Remi @ 5-10 and 180, doesnt look like he weighs that much, dudes solid!
  • 5 0
 60lbs per leg
  • 7 0
 Good to see Jesse running spd flip-flops for this race.
  • 5 0
 Bike reviewers: “ride9 is too many options”
Remi and Jesse: “ride9 is not enough options”
  • 4 0
 I'm super impressed that the new altitude is so adjustable, sounds like it would make for a perfect race bike.
  • 4 0
 Love these write ups, and stoked to see these boys back on the racetrack!
  • 3 0
 The BIG question is: is ALN racing this weekend or not? Too late to change my team anyway.
  • 10 0
 She is!
  • 3 0
 I'm hopping with excitement to watch Melamed race
  • 3 0
 Who's the original and who's the clone ?
  • 1 0
 Jesse dropped 12 psi of fork pressure compared to the last bikecheck thats quite a significant difference.
Any background infos for that?
  • 2 0
 Interesting that Jesse prefers the mallet E's with the shorter spindle...
  • 3 1
 You think Shimano could create a crank finish that didn't wear off by now.
  • 1 0
 and socks and spoke nipples
  • 1 0
 Remi's "test pilot" rear tire looks a lot like DHRIIs.
  • 4 0
 Jesse mentioned in his slayer bike check tha they were testing dhr2's in 2.5 not the usual 2.4. I would guess it is that.
  • 1 1
 Racers starting to move back to coil. Soon Fox and Rock Shox will be releasing coil forks again.
  • 1 0
 Why is there a zip tie holding his grip on?
  • 3 0
 Push on grips are thinner as they don’t need a core (good for smaller hands). But they can spin easily so he has a zip tie on the inner side and a wire on the outer to secure them.
  • 2 0
 Because these Renthal grips are turning easily. Never really managed to get mine to stick properly although I used glue and wired them on.
  • 2 6
flag whatsstinky (Sep 20, 2020 at 21:34) (Below Threshold)
 @islandforlife:
It was a rhetorical question... Zip tying grips on is what your spastic mate does when he doesn't know how to tie wire. You only zip tie a grip on once before you realize its a shit idea.
  • 1 0
 Tyre pressures
  • 2 5
 I always think people are compromising on seat height when the dropper is slammed.
  • 11 0
 I always thought the ppl compromised on seat height when the dropper isn't slammed.
  • 1 4
 @eugenux: You think it’s possible that both these riders ended up with an optimum seat height for pedalling with their posts slammed? I reckon they’re running them too high for pedalling.

It’s Enduro so it’s not super critical but I see loads of guys on trail bikes with the same.
  • 4 4
 @jclnv:

Let's not forget that the positiobmn in which they will pedal is actually 3-4 cm lower as, in the pics, the bikes aren't sag.

As to the compromise, when ref. to enduro bikes, I always thought that the whole point of the dropper is to remove the saddle as much as possible not just slightly. For me, as much as possible means slammed droppers.
  • 24 0
 @eugenux: pedalling height doesn't change with sag unless you ride a klein mantra.
  • 1 2
 @spaceofades:
Not in relation with the bb(although, some could argue that because you sagged the bike, you have actually slacken the STA making the height from the horizontal line that crosses the BB with the vertical line that crosses the center of the saddle shorter)

..no, I believed @jclnv ref. to the fact that the saddles seems to be higher than the stems, on a horizontal line; but, maybe I understand it incorrectly.
  • 7 0
 @eugenux: regardless of sta, the distance from saddle to bb doesn't change, it's a fixed front triangle.

I believe jclnv is commenting on how the droppers are 100% slammed to the collar, which means it's unlikely the post is at the ideal pedaling height, unless Rocky designed each frame specifically around Jesse and Remi's legs.

And as a long-legged rider, it's not 'wrong' to have the seat higher than the stem. Just personal preference.
  • 6 0
 Maybe they have had the stroke on the dropper optimized to them by Fox.
  • 2 0
 @rideonjon: I did wonder that.
  • 3 0
 @jclnv: actually I think I am running my seat post just a touch too low. Only a mm or 2. Its actually pretty crazy how close the seat tube length is for me when fully slammed.
  • 1 0
 @remrem: And Jesse it seems!
  • 1 0
 I am betting they are slammed for the photos, not for racing.

Though it would not surprise me if they slammed them right before a stage for more clearance, then raised back up for a transfer. I have done that before. By luck, my current setup is the lowest it goes in the frame (curved tube limits insert length) and it matches my pedal height perfect.
Below threshold threads are hidden

Post a Comment



You must login to Pinkbike.
Don't have an account? Sign up

Join Pinkbike  Login
Copyright © 2000 - 2020. Pinkbike.com. All rights reserved.
dv56 0.019667
Mobile Version of Website