Here at UKXCNews.com we have to confess to being unapologetic bike geeks, and appreciate that it's often those personal, specific touches in terms of equipment and components that make a particular bike 'just right' for a rider and their particular discipline. Even when riders have the same basic bike, it's usually easy to tell whether they favour XC, Marathon or Endurance racing just from their set-up.
So - to feed our bike geek needs, and hopefully those of our readers, we're launching our Race Bike Focus series. Over the coming weeks we're going to be looking at a variety of different riders' bikes, across a range of racing disciplines. First up are the gorgeous Scott Team bikes that have been ridden to some notable successes this season by the gents from the Mountain Trax Vauxhall Motors Team.
Scott Sports UK have 2 sponsored teams, the factory team and Mountain Trax – Vauxhall Motors Cycling Team. Both teams have access to the top of the range RC bikes, with the MTVM’s team opting for the 900 series hardtail Scale and full suspension Spark. Team manager Ben Thomas rode his Scott Scale 900 RC to victory at the BIKE Transalp 7 day stage race this year. However Ben decided to race the Spark 900 RC for the Isle of Man End 2 End where he won the event in record time.
The team are sponsored by Sram, Rockshox and Avid. A mix of XX1 grip and trigger shifters can be found on different rider’s bikes. World Cup XX Carbon forks with XLoc remote hydraulic lockout lever are fitted to all bikes. Syncros FL1.0 carbon 700mm handlebars with 9 degree back sweep.
All riders run Schwalbe tyres with the TL Easy Snake Skin versions a popular choice for races on rougher terrain. Using a Lezyne digital pressure gauge track pump the riders can accurately set and adjust tyre pressures often down to about 20psi.
Rotor Rex 1.1 chainsets with narrow wide rings to keep the chain in place. The ovalised chainrings relieve stress on knees and muscles by illuminating the dead spot from the pedal stroke. A smoother pedal stroke results in better traction from the back wheel. Using Rotor’s 4130 bottom bracket enables the Rex’s 30mm axle to fit into the Scott bikes bottom bracket shell which is designed to accommodate a 24mm axle.
Time Atac XC8 Carbon pedals offer a secure engagement. The lightweight design doesn’t sacrifice durability with long service intervals and reliability an important factor for a team racing marathons and stage races.
12mm bolt through rear axles on both the Scale and Spark keeps everything stiff to ensure maximum power transfer. Sram XX1 rear mech and 10-42t cassette offers a wide enough ratio to conquer mountains even with a single 34 tooth front chainring.
Syncros carbon components can be found all over the bikes with a mix of saddles, models and widths used by the different riders. Ben opts for the road RR1.0 standard width saddle with carbon rails and base. A 90mm x 10 degree XR1.0 carbon stem keeps the steering quick and precise. Syncros carbon bottle cages keep a tight hold on the team’s USN water bottles. Lezyne tool and accessories are used by the team including these saddle bags with quick release clip
Rockshox SID XX Carbon forks are fitted with an upgraded 15mm Maxle Lite. A range of Avid brakes can be found on the bikes from XX to X0 trails all with 160mm rotors.
No mistaking whose bike is whose!
The team bikes will soon be available for sale. Follow the team on facebook for more information.https://www.facebook.com/pages/Mountain-Trax-Vauxhall-Motors-Cycling-Team/330790256947713
If you feel you have a race bike worthy of a feature, please get in touch. Our only real proviso is that the bike must be significantly 'tweaked' or built to your race needs. 'Stock' bikes are lovely, but we'd like to showcase bikes that reflect the race needs of individuals.