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Video: Norco Unveils New DH Bike Design & Kit Ahead of the Leogang DH World Cup

Jun 6, 2024 at 15:37
by Norco Bicycles  


In celebration of our 60th anniversary, the liveries of the Norco Race Division will be updated and celebrated throughout the UCI DH World Cup season.

Concepted by creators Nick Larsen and Paul Bliss, the newest look will be represented by the athletes in Leogang, Austria, and Val di Sole, Italy.

For the first kit of the season, the Norco logo was the theme. The second design concept is about the riders – they’re such an interconnected group. Nick and Paul took the painted portraits that their friend, rider and artist Max Nerurkar, created for the Norco truck, and turned them into jersey and bike designs.


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bigquotesI always enjoy working with Nick & Paul, they always give me a lot of creative freedom while also pointing me in directions I might not usually explore. I had never really painted portraits; it was fun to see how people turned out looking without being too attached to a particular result.Max Nerurkar


The paint theme continues on the jersey with an aerosol version of the rock on one arm, along with the paint stripes, combined with a mix n’ match of logos and graphic elements that are repeated across their Norco designs for the year.

The designs are influenced by a period in the sport when things were less professional – the homemade aesthetic of the garage bike brands that kicked off what we know today as the modern era of off-road bike companies, of which Norco is one. Norco has been around since the beginning and it’s a way to celebrate our heritage while looking ahead to what’s new and inventive.


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The team will be riding for Lucas after his injury in Fort William, featuring his portrait on their bike frames so that he’s “with them” as they ride.


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bigquotesWe are a pretty tight knit team, having Lucas get injured in Fort William was pretty gutting, we all miss him. We brought him back on t-shirts in Poland which was really cool and now the creative team have done a great job on the frames. To me, this is one of the best-looking frames we've had. I'm super excited to see it out on the track!Greg Minnaar


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Stay up to date on what the team has been up to at norco.com/athletes.

Author Info:
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Member since Feb 11, 2000
135 articles

114 Comments
  • 117 20
 That frame paint scheme is nightmare fuel...good to see the GOAT miss out on the kit horror show, also!
  • 5 1
 Is he on the same team? His jersey says "factory division" whereas the others have "race division". Also, back with the Syndicate everyone seemed to have a different clothing sponsor so clothing would look different anyway. Apparently Greg needs to sport the Fox Head logo, but I'm not sure whether the others are also tied to a clothing brand. Or is that Nespresso logo a bicycle clothing brand logo as well?

Other than that, the paint scheme doesn't bother me at all. I think it is cool though for lack of a proper muddy Leogang this year, it may not blend that well with the mud. I could appreciate this as a bit of a middle finger towards the new UCI rule requiring specific "gravity mtb or bmx" clothing branded as such. If that were the goal, an even better option would be to have the pants look like jeans and the jersey like a plain white T-shirt. Only Cedric Gracia would have gone down a different route.
  • 29 8
 Thought to myself. "Let see how it looks once they take the masking tape off, wait, that's not masking tape?"
Toddler paint scheme.
  • 8 4
 @Rlvinas: When I first saw the pictures I genuinely thought they'd been done by someone at Norco's kid.
  • 34 3
 Good thing: they can leave the keys on the van!
  • 20 17
 You curmudgeons here need to settle down, it's just Norco having a bit of fun!
Mark my words, this bike will be be collectable, unlike the 99% of top tier race machines that get used, abused and binned.
  • 6 3
 The spending over at Norco these days. Wild…
  • 9 3
 @CarbonShmarbon: Collectible? C’mon, man. C’mon.
  • 23 14
 Agree the designs are creative, fun and playful, something that a lot of the old fart armchair athletes on here will not appreciate
‘Curmudgeons’’ putting it mildly. Haha
  • 16 6
 It's a fun design jeeeze
  • 13 2
 Well, it seems like if the goal was to get attention and get people talking (which on Pinkbike implies, arguing), the design couldn't be more perfect Smile .
  • 4 5
 @TheR: Absolutely. These bikes will be hanging on walls years after the majority are ocean fill. Prototype with an interesting story, Greg's (likely) last ride, f*ck-it livery and future nostalgia. (I just invented that) Sure, it's not on the same level as also-Greg's Honda but they will be remembered, then coveted.
  • 5 0
 @CarbonShmarbon: If you say so. If I were a betting man, I’d say it’s gonna be long forgotten and of little consequence in 10 years.
  • 2 0
 @TheR: Ok, bet's on! Winner gets the bike?
  • 4 1
 Like the recent Privateer redesign, it must be demoralising to put all the effort into something only to find out your customers hate it.

I also don't like it (sorry Norco), but at least it isn't focus-grouped blandness!
  • 1 0
 @boozed: Who are the customers in this case? The racers? the ones who want to buy them as a piece of nostalgia? Seems to me like they shouldn't be too worried.
  • 1 1
 @vinay: Okay "customers" might be a logical leap, but I'm talking about the MTB enthusiasts that comment on these things on the internet. They're ultimately customers...
  • 5 0
 @boozed: Well, it isn't too bad is it? Some of us here like it or at least appreciate the willingness to try something different, others don't. They can't please everyone.
  • 2 3
 Another paint scheme designed by children...lol
  • 3 1
 Don't comment much, but... - You would all be whinging about a boring paint job with no imagination or creativity. - Rob Warner said himself he sucked when he first started commentating. But he got better and better.... - Red Bull makes good content, but is, last time I checked, a corporation, whose base business is selling liquid poison to ignorant kids, and not the salvation of MTB. - Santa cruz's are social suck up cred on wheels - I like the Norco frames and they're attitude, even if the spending and team dialogue seems mismatched with current circumstances. My chest is much lighter, I'll see myself out, and go back to not commenting.
  • 2 0
 @CarbonShmarbon: Yeah, I’ll see you in 10 years…
  • 1 0
 @Haydos85: I certainly don’t mean to drag you back in to commenting, so feel free to ignore this. Maybe others can chime in — to your point, our choices are either hideous monstrosity or boring paint jobs? There can’t be vast spectrum in between?
  • 63 3
 At least it's a fun and different thing, reminds me of the BMW art cars. Obviously all might not like them but they totally stand out in a sea of blocky primary color paint jobs.
  • 6 2
 I love the color palettes...just not the "art"
  • 39 1
 It's kind of awful, but I absolutely love it. In a world where everyone seems to be going for a tidy, clean kit, Norco's doing something different. Most importantly, even though it hasn't been a great start to the season, it looks like they're having fun and that's awesome. I'm not sure I've ever seen Minnar look so relaxed.
  • 37 1
 Norco seems to be throwing some "f*ck it" into the ring, which I actually really dig. For a while they've seemed like the Volvo of bike brands. People who like them like them a lot, and they're high quality, but seemingly unremarkable.
  • 13 0
 Exactly this, and good on Norco for doing so. This direction is absolutely different, but I can't get enough of it! There's something about the art direction that seems a bit like it came from the mind of an *excited* 8 year old, and I dig it. Makes me smile, just like I smile when riding my bike.
  • 2 0
 Yeah I agree, they're "just getting started" as they say, so give them time to settle in. No need to be bashing new WC DH teams considering the state of the sport. The Volvo comp is funny, Norco used to be one of the most b.a. brands when I was a kid. Love the look of their newer stuff.
  • 32 0
 It's the paint equivalent of "no such thing as bad publicity."

I guess the fact that a mundane post about paint and kits is getting a lot of attention proves that point.
  • 7 0
 Next on the Norco fashion catwalk.. lampshade helmets and edible fruit Speed suits! ;^P
  • 6 0
 I think we came for “New DH Bike Design” but stayed for the comments.
  • 4 0
 @Jaybirdy: re: "edible fruit Speed suit" Indica or sativa? Asking for a friend...
  • 2 0
 @thomasjkenney1024: lol, Sativdica
  • 28 6
 They're REALLY leaning into that now. Yikes.
  • 9 7
 I didn't like the first iteration at all. But I LOVE this one!
  • 8 0
 @rrolly: "A face that only a mother could love". Did you birth an XL front triangle, you poor guy?
  • 39 18
 Wow those look terrible
  • 6 3
 Sure, Norco might offend a few of the ‘bluenoses’ with their cocky stride and musky odours. Oh, they'll never be the darling of the so-called ‘Pinky Commenters’ who cluck their tongues, stroke their beards, and talk about ‘What's to be done with this Norco Race Division?".
  • 2 0
 Agreed but here we are talking about it
  • 20 0
 Does anyone remember the Cartoon "Ahhh Real Monsters"?
  • 3 0
 That was exactly what I thought when I saw the image on the front page. Had to click in to see if I was right. Glad someone else thought the same thing!
  • 19 4
 I like the sense of adventure, just doing whatever you want is hard these days because everyone is a judge. I am happy that they are not conforming with the "norm" (whatever that is). Plus they were able to tie in the gold lowers on that fork pretty nicely. Plus, I am always going to be a Stan for Minnaar.
  • 2 8
flag dwtsk2 (Jun 7, 2024 at 6:36) (Below Threshold)
 Stay away from bridges for a while my guy
  • 19 1
 Love the look of the kit and frames. Playful and unique. Reminds me a bit of what EF has been doing.
  • 5 0
 Very much the visual and brand equivalent of EF, had the same thought. Really makes them stand out among the tired Gulf liveries, F1/SX tributes, etc.
  • 19 3
 terribly ugly in a good way
  • 9 1
 While it is polarizing, I salute the art and the will to stand out. The art is charming in a rough around the edges kind of way. Bravo!
  • 4 0
 "Ugly nice" is actually a design term, and this is definitely that. I actually like it. There's a sound thought behind what looks a bit crazy, and since you're all talking about it with an opinion, it's also working on the marketing front.

The full bike actually looks quite good I think. Some definite design look.
  • 6 0
 I think this is great - it may look funny (in a good way), but I also think the frame design is clever and simple.
  • 7 0
 My gut says hate it.... but I don't! Good for them for standing out.
  • 6 0
 Its getting attention (good or bad) I guess that's a win....
  • 8 3
 Paintjob is sick! Let more artists to paint frames and do the thing they're good at, I say
  • 2 0
 Forgot camo type paint jobs for prototypes. This type of paint job is much more effective...all I see is the ugly paint scheme and I can't look at it for more than a second. Whatever secret changes or custom bits they add this season will be hidden in plain sight!
  • 3 0
 "I don’t even know what that means"
"No one knows what it means, but it’s provocative"
"No, it’s not, it’s gross"
"Gets the people going"
  • 3 0
 I think Norco has something going here for keeping new bikes a secret. Instead camouflaging paint schemes and privacy wraps, just make the bike difficult to look at.
  • 1 0
 It might work if Greg wasn't the one riding it, but it doesn't fit his image at all. I'm not sure I understand, given that they just got one of the best to ever do it. That's the story... You have Greg Minaar?

Otherwise, I like that it's so different. Maybe let each rider design their paint own scheme.
  • 4 0
 Norco: "Hey Greg, here's your new race jersey"
Greg: "No"
Norco "Oh c'mon, it's just for for fun"
Greg "No"
  • 1 0
 Say what you will, but it looks like there having some fun to me. It's gotta help take some stress off and put a grin on their face. It's all about being in good spirits and remembering your riding bikes as a job and it should be fun. Best of luck this weekend!
  • 5 2
 wTF lol It's worse than the first iteration. It doesn't make justice to their really nice frame. :/
  • 7 7
 If there ever was a living example of “The Emperor Has No Clothes,” this is it. This is indisputably hideous, but they got you guys in here denying your own recognition of that fact. “It’s ugly, but in a good way… I kinda like it.” No you don’t. You just don’t want to be the kid to stand up and say it for fear of being “uncool” or something. Embrace your gut reaction. This is awful! Stand up! Speak the truth!
  • 3 1
 Wrong. I like it. It's different and that's what I like about it. Also, I would 100% buy a shirt with one of those finger-painted portraits of Gracey, Greg, Lucas or Kirk.
  • 2 0
 @jsnfschr: I think the negative props on his comment are a great illustration of his point, all the people liking it have just a valid of an opinion as this guy hating on it. Personally I think the spirit of what they were going for is fun but it goes against most design principles of what looks good, from color coordination to the level of "finished" that it is presented as. AKA it is hideous
  • 6 2
 It's cute that you guys think that your opinion matters
  • 4 0
 I like it a lot. Well done. Something fresh and new.
  • 9 6
 Lot's of marketing but result-wise, not so good ...
  • 1 0
 Makes it look like bamboo bikes Smile

*good job from my POV. Looks fun, original, freak and totally different from "classic" usual paint jobs mostly seen.
  • 5 2
 Not very "factory" or "fast looking" really just creeps me out
  • 3 0
 Really leaning into it aren't they...
  • 4 0
 I dig it!
  • 3 0
 Looks very nice. Clean lines
  • 4 1
 Did they ask Lucas if he wanted his face ridden?
  • 3 0
 Flashbacks of Fat Chance Cycles. Love it. Get crazy.
  • 3 0
 Offerings to Ronald's Mc Happy meal with extra fries
  • 1 0
 Not saying it’s the best color/theme ever… but so much better than the semi painted/primed white-blue-yellow-gold(??)… at least it has a soul now!
  • 4 1
 I dig it!
  • 2 1
 Is done a good job in that first photo to find an even worse looking kit lol
  • 3 0
 That's ummm... something
  • 2 0
 11 images. But please can we have 1 proper side view
  • 1 0
 I wouldn’t complain if I could ride that bike! Good to see something different.
  • 2 0
 Actually they look sick, better than an all black bike with purple ano
  • 2 0
 I’m into it! Keep em coming! Nice timed training as well!
  • 2 1
 Reminds me of Fosters Home for Imaginary Friends!
  • 3 1
 Woof.
  • 3 1
 Ren & Stimpy shit
  • 4 5
 The R&S artists had actual talent. This is just nonsense.
  • 2 1
 must have been a good batch of mushrooms to get that “creative”
  • 2 0
 Hmmmm, I don’t knowwww
  • 1 0
 The only bike I'd definitely repaint from new.
  • 1 0
 The riders look like regular peeps without the race kit on.
  • 1 0
 Greg goes full dad mode. I'm into it.
  • 1 0
 Looks like a Deviate bike
  • 1 0
 Do the waves crew still wave?
  • 1 0
 Second place at a community college art show.
  • 1 1
 Fire the designer quick. Crazy this team has all this money and resources and still got this
  • 1 0
 Beige and Gold....nothing else to say
  • 1 0
 The paint could potentially stop bike thieves when they open the van up?
  • 3 2
 Gross
  • 2 1
 They trolling us
  • 1 0
 newsworthy AF
  • 1 1
 ... like your kid's drawing you only pretend to hang on the fridge.
  • 1 1
 What the hell are they smoking?
  • 1 0
 Spending all the money
  • 1 0
 I like it
  • 1 0
 Love it!
  • 1 0
 Whose on the shrooms?
  • 5 6
 Be a lot cooler if you didn't
  • 1 2
 Maybe turn it down a notch there fellas.
  • 2 3
 Yikes Greg
  • 4 3
 Right about now he's thinking Specialized 2025 cant come soon enough.
  • 2 4
 It matters how colours are combined, and this doesn't work.
  • 2 5
 So ugly
  • 1 1
 Oh we know you are hunny. No need to say it to the world
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