We've grown accustomed to seeing Martin Maes riding an aluminum GT Sanction, but this year he's starting things off aboard an unnamed prototype with a carbon front triangle and aluminum swingarm. The 27.5"-wheeled bike uses a familiar-looking Horst link suspension layout, and has a flip chip on the lower shock mount to adjust the geometry. Oh, and there's room for a water bottle.
Richie Rude is rolling on the big wheels this week with this Yeti SB5.5.
Custom colorways from One Up for the chain guide...
...While a Shimano XTR and Saint drivetrain turns Rude's raw horsepower into forward motion. He's also running CushCore tire inserts to protect against the numerous sharp and pointy rocks on course.
Red is the new black, at least when it comes to the latest RockShox Lyrik RC2, like this one on the front of Damian Oton's Devinci Spartan.
There's a Maxxis Shorty up front to help deal with the loose, powdery soil.
Oton has the name and birth date of his daughter inscribed on the rocker link.
Theo Galay and his new Sunn bike.
Fast Suspension takes care of rear shock duties for the SUNN team this year.
Theo Galay and SUNN are running Formula forks...
...along with Formula Cura brakes
Remy Absalon's Scott Genius.
Suspension duties are split by a RockShox Super Deluxe in the back...
...And a Suntour Durolux up front.
Remy's also running Shimano's electric XTR Di2 drivetrain
Cecile Ravenel's desert-camo themed kit and the paint job on her Commencal Meta blend right in with the Chilean landscape.
A svelte Grip Shift-style mechanism is used to lock out the RockShox Super Deluxe Coil.
Cecile's running 23 psi in the front and 25 psi in the rear in her Hutchinson Toro tires.
Katy Winton's ready to rock and roll aboard her fresh Trek Slash.
There are two tokens and around 60 psi in that Lyrik, although Katy said that since the fork is so new they're still working on figuring out the ideal settings.
The Thru-Shaft shock is inflated to 128 psi.
Take a look at that custom Garmin mount - it's held in place using the bolt for Trek's Knock Block system. There's also a OneUp tool hidden in the fork steerer.
Bontrager SE5 tires have been set up with Flat Tire Defender inserts front and rear. The front tire is a prototype with slightly softer side knobs for extra grip.
Cody Kelley's on a new team this year, and will be racing the 27.5" Alchemy Arktos. The bike has 152mm of rear travel, and it's equipped with a 170mm Fox 36
Those XT brake levers are attached to Shimano's most powerful Saint calipers.
OneUp has a strong presence on the EWS circuit - their EDC tool seems to be everywhere.
At roughly 165 pounds, Cody's running 90 psi in his fork, and 197 psi in the Fox Float DPX2. His Maxxis tires, a 2.5" DHF and a 2.3" DHR II, are set at 25 and 29 psi respectively.