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Josh Bryceland & Sam Hockenhull's Prototype Cannondale DH Bikes - Red Bull Hardline 2024

May 31, 2024 at 13:13
by Mike Kazimer  
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Five years ago, Cannondale brought a wild looking prototype to the Maribor DH World Cup that had two shocks, one that controlled the spring rate and the other the damping. Now, Cannondale's no stranger to coming up with out-of-the-ordinary creations - Anne Caroline Chausson and Cedric Gracia raced on dual-shock Geminis back in the early 2000s - but the new bike was still something of a surprise. It never reached mass production, but some of the concepts and construction techniques did end up being used on the Jekyll enduro bike.

That prototype frame is back again with a fresh paint job, this time to take on Red Bull Hardline underneath Josh Bryceland and Sam Hockenhull. There's only one shock in this configuration, essentially turning the frame into the equivalent of a longer travel Jekyll.

bigquotesLAB71 models take rare form: prototypes, pro-replicas, and limited-production models. They come from a division where engineers have free reign to push beyond the typical constraints of time, cost, and complexity. It's our crucible for product development and so when Redbull Hardline invited Josh Bryceland and Sam "Dave" Hockenhull to compete in this year's event, the LAB71 team brought the DH prototype back for duty. Cannondale


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Papa Josh and his son.
Josh Bryceland
Rider height: 187cm
Weight: 80kg

Cannondale DH Prototype

Size: XL
Shock: Formula MOD
Fork: Formula Nero 200mm
Fork pressure + number of tokens: 75psi
Clicks of LSC compression from closed: 4
Rebound from closed: 5
Volume spacers: 4
Wheels: Reserve DH 32mm Full 29
Tires: Maxxis Assegai front, 25 psi / Minion DHR II rear 2.5", 28 psi
Tire inserts? No
Brakes: Formula Cura 4 220 front 200 rear
Cockpit: Burgtec 40mm stem, 50mm bar, 800mm wide
Drivetrain: Hope 155 DH
Chainring size: 32

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The shock is tucked almost entirely out of sight, positioned in the downtube. A plastic cover keeps it protected from the Welsh mud.

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195mm of travel is handled by a Formula Mod coil shock.

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Sam Hockenhull

Frame: Cannondale DH Prototype
Size: XL
Shock: RockShox Super Deluxe
Fork: Fox Factory 49
Wheels: Reserve DH 32mm Full 29
Pedals - Burgtec M5 B-rage edition
Cranks - Hope 155mm, 32T chainring
SRAM GX mech and shifter, 7sp cassette
E*thirteen chain device
Burgtec Handle bars 31.8 Ride Wide DH, 780mm
Burgtec direct mount 15mm stem
Saddle - Burgtec
SRAM Code RSC brakes, F 220mm rotor, R 200mm
Tire F: 29" Michelin DH22, 26 psi
Tire R: Michelin DH34, 28 psi
No inserts

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Sam's running a mixed-brand setup, with a Fox 49 fork and a RockShox Super Deluxe shock.

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You can tell it's a prototype because it says so.


Photo credit: Craig Robinson

Author Info:
mikekazimer avatar

Member since Feb 1, 2009
1,763 articles

53 Comments
  • 29 1
 they've put mounting holes for every possible shock system in the known universe with the sole exception of the "looks like session" one Big Grin
  • 159 0
 They were trying to understand Josh when they asked where they think it should mount
  • 5 26
flag scrawnydog FL (May 31, 2024 at 15:56) (Below Threshold)
 HAHAHA. I gotta say, it inspires little confidence to see that level of indecisiveness. If I were Cannondale's marketing department I'd be hiding under my desk right now.
  • 3 0
 @scrawnydog: If you go look at the original images it makes more sense. There are only 2 mounting locations total and both were in use simultaneously.
  • 5 0
 Old prototype. Original this frame had 2 shocks mounted. One was purely for damper and one was purely the coil. They literally separated the spring mass damper equation into two independent circuits.
  • 12 0
 Here is the previous "Dual" shock mounting for reference: www.pinkbike.com/news/cannondale-dh-bike-maribor-world-cup-dh-2019.html
  • 23 0
 I really want to see what happens if you just mount two shocks to the bike. No messing around with a springless damper and damperless spring, just slap two DHX2s on there and see what happens.
  • 3 0
 Try and compress that unless you got 2 lb/ft springs..
  • 2 0
 It would probably be a 2 shot rapid fire explosion after a few runs Smile
  • 22 0
 Those protos were 5 years ago?!

Man I remember the forum speculations on those bikes, and it feels so recent...
  • 3 1
 That prototype os the reason Moi Moi is World Champ. We could all agree it was succesfull in a way hahaha
  • 5 0
 Time really started whizzing by once covid-19 hit
  • 12 1
 Oh, look! Cables running externally all the way, what a sight. If it takes prototype decals for that to pass by the damned marketing departments, then bring on those stickers!
  • 2 0
 Really need more of the old canyon design where it uses a plastic cover, external but also internal.
  • 7 0
 Interesting to see Josh on an xl dh bike.. pretty sure he used to ride a medium during the syndicate days?
  • 2 0
 Only one size of mold ever made, flip chips on the chain stay and headset cups so probably not too far outside of Bryceland's size range
  • 6 1
 He rode a size L V10 back in his syndicate era.
  • 1 1
 Yes, was thinking the same, sure he always rode a medium
  • 6 0
 Nice to see the “Rat” amongst it again, was a shame to see Josh leave racing after being the 2014 overall World Cup champ. But on to bigger and better things….
  • 2 0
 How do they ride with that much pressure? Didnt blow my tyres up for ages and started setting KOM's checked the pressures and they were 18/16 lol (insert on the rear) when i put them back up to 22/24 (enduro tyres) it felt terrible! Got some DH tyres to try a bit lower since im smashing the wheel with an insert on the rear at 22psi
  • 1 0
 At the speeds they ride, they'd roll tires off rims. I run similar pressure as josh does, but I'm slower and 275 lbs lol
  • 1 0
 I usually ride my front at 26-27psi and the rear at 30-31psi depending on track and weather conditions. Just depends on how much you push back into the bike through compressions and over bumps. I’m 6,3’ and 86kg
  • 2 0
 Is it me or does it almost look like the shock hardware is the only thing preventing that linkage from folding in the wrong way?
  • 2 0
 Does anyone have an idea as to why Sam is running a fox 49 over a newer fox 40? Or did they re-release it with a new damper or something like that?
  • 2 0
 Are these the original two frames with fresh paint or did they churn some more out?
  • 2 0
 Maybe they’re still trying to figure out the correct number of shocks. Bike looks sick. Ratboy 4eva.
  • 3 0
 Cannondale hitting my paintjob buttons
  • 3 0
 And flats. Let’s not forget the flats.
  • 2 0
 hell of a track to ride a proto on.
  • 1 0
 All the mount holes make me thing a DH bike with two rear shocks would be pretty fun. Anyone ever seen a build like that?
  • 2 0
 I hope Burgtec 15mm stem becomes available to the public.
  • 1 0
 Cannondale was my first mountain bike, and it's so cool to see them still doing something cool like this.
  • 1 0
 Smash it Dave !! (Not literally)
  • 1 0
 I said it back then too, produce these so I can buy one.
  • 2 0
 New Burgtec flats?
  • 2 0
 Looks like a bigger platform version with central pins?
  • 3 2
 friday night quest for y'all: find the dog on one of the pics
  • 2 0
 There she is.
  • 2 0
 No lefty?
  • 1 0
 There has never bern a truly long travel lefty because the air spring and damper have to fit in the same leg
  • 2 0
 Does cannondale have a patent on the shaped stanchion design on leftys? It always seemed like if they applied that approach to other inverted forks, the torsional flex complaint would be a thing of the past
  • 1 0
 @SonofBovril: not saying your wrong but I worked at a dealer and was told by a mr Murray W. that the needle bearings on experimental longer travel Lefty forks would migrate and I think bind up the suspension effectively shortening it?

You could be right too but the damper stacking could be an issue I don't know enough about it but I remember him telling us about the needle bearings during a clinic in ~2009
  • 1 0
 they couldn't afford the C in the title
  • 1 0
 nvm they added it
  • 1 0
 Does water collect where the shock is or is there a drainage hole?
  • 1 0
 Looks like they forgot to fit something inside the front triangle
  • 1 0
 Why is the drivetrain hidden in all the pics?
  • 1 0
 Anyone else think Ratboy is looking a LOT like Adam Sandler these days?
  • 1 0
 That cable rub on the link geeks me righhhttttttt out.
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