Racing

Nouvelle

Mountains as Far as the Eye Can See

July 20, 2016

Mountains, mountains, mountains. As far as the eye can see. We are definitely in the Alps…

Words by Remi Gauvin, photos by Matt Wragg

La Thuile 2016 will go down as the most descending in 4 days I have done to date. In those days we descended 15,000m, wore through brake pads, and made a short career of tires. We also had a lot of fun.

La Thuile is on the French-Italian border near the famous mountaineering towns of Chamonix and Courmayeur. Mont Blanc, the tallest mountain in Europe, loomed over most of the stages throughout the weekend, but the weather played nice.

Stages were almost all accessed by lift with the exception of stage one. This meant that while our legs were fresh at the start of each stage, the long steep runs were punishing on the rest of our bodies. Riders were complaining that their arms were dead by the end of each run. All stages were physical in their own way and each one had a solid dose of climbing. The energy we saved on the transfers was more than spent on the stages.

Stage 1 started across the valley from the ski resort, and was the one stage without chairlift access. We climbed Col San Carlo and then up into the alpine, 900 meters above La Thuile. The stage started with some typical tight European switchbacks before passing through grass fields and dropping into the woods below. Alex Cure and Andreane both finished 4th on this stage.

For Stage 2 we headed back to the lift and made our ascent to the start. This stage started in the alpine, flagged though rough rocks and gorse bushes, only burned in by the countless riders who were sent to ride through it. Next we cut through a farmers cattle field—in practice we'd encountered a herd of stubborn cattle here, and they could not give a damn if there was a bike race happening where they wanted to graze. Then, finally ending on an old access road that zig-zagged across the bottom of the hill. Andreane finished a career best 2nd place on this stage and Florian took 3rd in the men’s field.

Stage 3 was one of the fastest stages of the weekend, but also one of the longest, with a brutal climb at the bottom. Fast rock faces and high speed corners in the alpine, twisty woods in the middle, followed by some of the best steeps of the race. Just when you thought it might be all over the course turned a sharp right and sent us onto a gravel road pointing right back up the hill. During the race the crowds screamed at you to pedal, while your legs screamed at you to stop. Stage 3 one of the best of the weekend, but it was also one of the worst of the weekend.

A night off to reflect on the days racing went by quickly. Soon we were back on the top of the mountain about to drop into Stage 4—one of the longest and most physical stages of the race. It seemed that it was always just slightly flatter than you wanted.  A gravel road climb in the middle of the stage had me seeing red into the next section, and hanging on by a thread by the end of the stage. Andreane showed her fitness once again and backed up her first day with another 2nd place.

Stage 5, although not extremely physical, was very technical. Steep off camber sections meant that you had to be precise and patient in during the stage in order to shine. 

The final stage of the weekend stage had a mixture of the highlights of every stage of the race. Tight switch backs, technical off cambers, steep chutes and a solid climb in the middle of the stage. The bottom was lined with spectators as you entered the finish area. It was a great stage to finish the weekend on.

Florian Nicolaï said that although he was happy with his 5th place result, he didn’t perform his best in a few of the stages and it cost him. Nevertheless, his consistant performance bumped him up into 3rd place in the Overall category.

Jesse also felt that his 13th didn’t reflect his pace this weekend and a few mistakes on Stage 5 knocked him back in the overall. After injury troubles the last few rounds, it's great to see him smashing stages again.

Andreane was of course over the moon with her result. 3rd place in her first real race of the season!

Once again the team as a whole performed spectacularly. We were the number one team on the weekend and added 100 points to extend our lead in the Team Overall. Andreane finished a career-best 3rd, while Florian finished 5th in the men’s. Alex finished 11th, Jesse 13th and I finished 23rd. Seb also took 2nd place in U21, keeping pace in his season-long battle with Adrien Dailly.

Next stop, Aspen!

— Remi Gauvin

Précédent Nouvelle Voici le Reaper et le Growler Le Reaper offre la même performance de trail agressive que nos modèles Thunderbolt et Altitude à double suspension, mais en plus petit, pour les plus jeunes ravageurs. Le Growler tire pleinement avantage de ses pneus de 27,5 po + à haut volume et de sa géométrie trail issue de la nouvelle génération afin que vous puissiez rouler n’importe où en toute confiance.
Prochain Nouvelle Fresh Threads on the Web Store New technical and lifestyle apparel available now, plus a Summer Sale!
Nouvelle

Découvrez votre Element

June 27, 2016

Utilisation prévue : XC
Débattement avant : 120 mm
Débattement arrière : 100 mm
Taille de roue : 29 po

Voici le résultat après plus de deux décennies en tête du peloton. Le nouveau Element procure une meilleure performance de suspension, une géométrie marathon raffinée, en plus d’un système d’ajustement Ride-9MC et de la place pour deux bouteilles dans le triangle avant. Les moindres détails ont été examinés en vue d’offrir une rigidité ciblée et une vitesse inégalée.

« Le nouveau Element est une machine pure de marathon XC,qui offre toute les capacités d’un vélo de trail, » explique le directeur de produit Alex Cogger. « Des gens se pointaient au BC Bike Race en pensant rouler sur des sentiers battus, mais se retrouvaient à faire les descentes à pieds ou cassaient leur monture en deux. Certains vélos n’impressionnent que par leur poids, les épreuves de XC ont évolué, et les vélos qui ne peuvent résister à cette nouvelle réalité n’ont pas leur place dans la course. »

Caractéristiques

  • Le cadre 100% carbone SmoothwallMC pèse 2250g (taille M, incluant boulonnerie et amortisseur. Peinture 2 tons T.O. ajoute 30g)
  • Le système d’ajustement Ride-9MC est intégré à la biellette, économisant poids et espace
  • Toutes les tailles peuvent loger deux bouteilles d’eau dans le triangle avant
  • ntégration Di2, FOX Live, et tige de selle télescopique conjointement
  • Cadre offert avec la peinture Team Only
  • Pivots à roulement à cartouche scellée avec quincaillerie simplifiée
  • Pivots à un côté, réduisant la largeur du triangle arrière –empéchant le talon de frotter, malgré le standard «Boost»
  • Concu pour un amortisseur standard très courant de 6,5 x 1,5 po
  • Compatible avec le 2x
  • Dégagement pour les pneus de 29 x 2,35 po
  • Passage interne complet des câbles de vitesse, des câbles de la tige de selle télescopique et du système de verrouillage, et passage des câbles de frein à l’intérieur du triangle avant
  • Très grandes ouvertures au tube de direction et sur le tube diagonal facilitant le passage interne des câbles
  • Nouvelle patte de dérailleur nécessitant une quincaillerie moins complexe
  • Axe boulonné de 35 g plus léger qu’un axe Boost traditionnel
  • Boîtier de pédalier PressFit BB92 et jeu de direction ZS44 | ZS56
  • Frein arrière de 160 mm de type « post-mount »
  • Taille maximale pour un plateau de pédalier : 38 dents pour SRAM et 36 pour Race Face
  • Taille maximale pour deux plateaux de pédalier : format standard de 28/40 dents
  • Grandeurs : S, M, L, XL, XXL

Suspension

Nous avons conçu notre suspension SmoothlinkMC afin de hausser les valeurs de l’anti-plongée (anti-squat) et de maximiser l’efficacité du pédalage, sans nuire à l’expérience de conduite traditionnelle que procurent les vélos Rocky Mountain. La suspension est souple au début de sa course et offre une bonne progression, permettant d’éviter un choc violent en fin de course. Nous avons axé nos efforts sur un support mi-course afin de laisser le plus de débattement possible pour encaisser les coups et nous avons diminué le ratio à l’amortisseur pour améliorer son efficacité et ses réglages.

En avant la musique et en arrière les affaires! Le nouveau Element a été conçu à partir d’une longue fourche de 120 mm pour ne pas que vous regrettiez vos quatre heures de témérité. Le résultat? Un vélo qui file à toute allure, fonçant sans peur sur les obstacles.

Géométrie

La géométrie du nouveau Element a subi une transformation substantielle; elle vous offre toutefois la même fiabilité et qualité de conduite que vous aimiez tant de l’ancienne génération. Les angles sont plus relâchés pour que vous mainteniez une bonne stabilité, même après quatre heures d’à-coups, et la fourche est «offset» pour une dynamique de direction toujours très précise.

Nous avons raccourci le centre arrière, allongé légèrement la portée et accentué l’angle du tube de selle – ceci nous permet de raccourcir la potence et d’élargir le guidon, sans compromettre la position de puissance du cycliste. Le vélo n’est pas allongé comme un vélo de descente moderne, mais si vous avez besoin de plus de portée, notre modèle XXL fera l’affaire.

Système Ride-9™

Parce que les exigences pour les épreuves de XC et les courses à étapes sont de plus en plus grandes, nous avons conçu le système d’ajustement Ride-9MC, qui permet aux pilotes de personnaliser la géométrie et la suspension de leur Element. Pour adapter le système de nos vélos de trail, nous l’avons déplacé dans la biellette économisant ainsi poids et espace. L’angle du tube de direction se règle de 69 à 70°, et la suspension peut être ajustée pour en tirer les sensations d’une épreuve de XC ou d’une sortie intense en singletrack. Pour les courses à étapes sur plusieurs jours, les courses de marathon ou les authentiques épreuves de XC, obtenez l’équilibre parfait entre vivacité, confiance et réactivité.

Technologies

  • Grâce au système Ride-9™, le cycliste peut régler la géométrie et la courbe de suspension selon son style de conduite, son poids et le terrain qu’il affrontera. Ce système offre neuf configurations possibles grâce à deux petites plaques imbriquées.
  • Le carbone Smoothwall™ est fabriqué suivant un des procédés de fabrication les plus sophistiqués du monde, utilisé pour construire des cadres des plus durables qui offrent le meilleur rapport poids-rigidité et la meilleure qualité de conduite de l’industrie. En utilisant des moules internes rigides, nous avons perfectionné la forme intérieure des tubes et éliminé l’excédent des matériaux. Ce cadre allie plusieurs types de carbone en fonction de leur emplacement dans le cadre, ce qui optimise la rigidité et la résistance aux impacts, tout en réduisant le poids.
  • La suspension Smoothlink™ offre souplesse et support sur une plus grande plage de vitesses que les suspensions à pivot simple conventionnelles ou que les autres configurations de suspensions à quatre barres. Ce système breveté réduit les pertes d’énergie causées par le pédalage et les chocs violents en fin de course, tout en vous permettant de peaufiner des éléments variables comme le freinage et la traction en montée pour une multitude d’utilisations.
  • Grâce au concept Size Specific Tune™, tous les pilotes, peu importe leur physionomie, peuvent maintenant profiter d’une meilleure absorption aux petits chocs, d’un support mi-course et d’une progression en fin de course adéquats. Notre équipe de conception configure les amortisseurs selon des tests concrets menés sur le terrain, et en fonction de la taille du cadre, de S à XXL. 

Models

Element 999 RSL // Element T.O. Cadre

Element 990 RSL BC Edition (C1 & C2) 

Element 970 RSL (C1 & C2)

Element 950 RSL. // Element 930 RSL model will be same colour as 950 RSL, but is not shown above.

Available late 2016. Pricing to be announced.

Précédent Nouvelle Fresh Threads on the Web Store New technical and lifestyle apparel available now, plus a Summer Sale!
Prochain Caractéristique Welcome to the Family Vaea Verbeeck We filmed this little shredit with Vaea last year. She's been part of the Rocky Mountain family for a while now, and she's chomping at the bit to get racing in Lenzerheide next month.
Caractéristique

Welcome to the Family Vaea Verbeeck

June 22, 2016

Vaea has been part of the Rocky Mountain family for a while now. We filmed this little shredit with her last year, but ran into some computer issues before we could share it. She's currently on the mend from a collarbone injury in Lourdes, but she's chomping at the bit to get racing in Lenzerheide next month.

Who are you and what are you all about?

My name is Vaea Verbeeck. I was born in Tahiti, French Polynesia, and raised in Granby, Quebec. Growing up with my mom and older sister didn't stop me from being a total tomboy. I’ve always wanted to be the best at every sport: gymnastics, dancing, swimming, skiing, snowboarding, climbing, volleyball, soccer, you name it. But after progressing and learning, I’d stall in my motivation. They just weren’t for me.

At 16 I borrowed a downhill bike at Bromont, and I was hooked. The following year I got myself a bike and it didn't take me long to register for a downhill race. A few years later I was entering World Cups and knew that I’d found my sport. After finishing school in 2012, I rushed straight to North Vancouver and have been living the mountain life dream ever since. 

I’m currently working at the Lululemon Athletica head office during the off-season and pulling the plug every summer to race the World Cup circuit.

Strengths?

Not scared, strong, calm, bike park tracks (lame I know), rocks, jumps.

Weaknesses?

PEDALLINNNNNNG uphill. That shit is hard on the body and mind. I'm also pretty good at breaking bones, not gonna lie. I got my fair share over the years, it's a fine line.

What's your favourite race?

I think my favourite race was World Champs at Hafjell, Norway in 2014. I’d gone a couple of days early and just enjoyed the park there. I loved the track; good jumps, good high-speed technical woods, and good corners. Seemed to suit me well too, I got 6th—my best result so far.

Tell us about what you do off the bike. What are your off-the-bike goals?

Life without bikes exists? 

I spend a lot of time working out, indoors in the winter. Plus I take full advantage of the West Coast outdoor lifestyle: hiking, snowboarding, camping, bouldering, and food. Love food. #activities

What's good?

I'm happiest at races. Over the years I’ve developed a sort of second family at the races, and rolling through the pits with your mates on the way to practice is perfect. It maybe doesn't feel that exciting when you're out there, but when I’m out with an injury I have major FOMO.

What bikes are you riding right now?

  • Rocky Mountain Maiden
  • Rocky Mountain Altitude Rally Edition
  • Rocky Mountain Flow

How do you set your bikes up? Anything unique?

Slack and low to plough through the rough stuff. Otherwise pretty standard. 

Who's your favourite rider?

I'm scared to watch sometimes, but Brook MacDonald. Wild lad. Open throttle!

What is on your playlist right now?

Right now: ODESZA, Jupe, some Rihanna, Kilter, Tim Legend, Møme. It's all over the place. 

Favourite websites?

  • Pinkbike
  • Vital MTB
  • Youtube (gotta watch them Supercross replays somehow) 

If you were the boss of mountain biking, how would you change things?

Easy. I started racing because I loved discovering new tracks and challenges. If logistics and finances could allow it, I would love to see new race tracks every year! New places and new experiences.

Goals for 2016-2017?

I've been on the mend getting back from different serious injuries over the last few years. The goal is to stay on the bike more. Being off the bike is the last place I want to be. Setting my limits and be in the game for the next few years would be the best. 

I am eyeing up another National Champion title. I always want to better myself and my results. So technically, improving on a 6th place would be a World Cup podium. However, I am going for my best performance, not a result. I'll be happy to get back to races and give it my best. It's worked for me in the past.

Shout outs?

A bunch of rad people! Rocky Mountain and Hope Tech make it happen for me. Also, Troy Lee Designs, FiveTen, Oakley, Atlas Brace, Rockwell Watches, Crankbrothers, and JFG Nutrition for making me sweat a ton. 

Anything else?

Go out and play!

Video by Brian Park, Music by Sonny Parmar. Photos by Sam Needham courtesy Hope Tech. Additional photos by Brian Park and Margus Riga. 

Précédent Nouvelle Découvrez votre Element Voici le résultat après plus de deux décennies en tête du peloton.
Prochain Caractéristique Dumbing Down the Shore Wade Simmons parle enfin à propos de ce qu'il appelle la "de-gnarification" du North Shore de Vancouver.
Caractéristique

Flo Like Water

March 06, 2016

Florian Nicolaï is one of the most creative riders on the EWS circuit. His unique style threatens the podium at every race he enters. The Maritime Alps are home to some of the most technical tracks in the world, and working on this project over the winter showed us just how good Flo really is.

"This part of the world is the birthplace of Enduro. The Maitime Alps have produced some of the best riders on the planet, like Nico Vouilloz, Fabien Barel, Loic Bruni, and many others. The terrain and the culture make the difference—the trails have been here for centuries and were not made to ride, but to walk. So when you can find the flow here you’re a damn good rider." — Fred Glo, Godfather of Enduro & Owner of Urge bp

"Flo is insane. I don't understand half the stuff he does, but it's fun to watch!" — Jesse Melamed, Rally Team teammate

"Flo is a weirdly fast alien on a bike. He's got creative trail vision, and is one of the first riders coming up to have started out as a pure Enduro racer. Even after two strong EWS seasons taking 5th and 4th place overall, you get the feeling he's hungry for more results. Can't wait to see how this season unfolds." — Brian Park, Rocky Mountain Bicycles

Watch for Flo and the rest of our Rally Team throughout the entire Enduro World Series season. See you on track!

Rider: Florian Nicolaï
Bike: Altitude Rally Edition
Filmed by: Variable Visual, Sébastien Biget, & TS-Drone
Edited & Produced by: Brian Park
Photos by: Matt Wragg
Presented by: Rocky Mountain Bicycles & Urge bp
Supported by: Shimano, Maxxis Tires, Fox Racing Shox, Stan’s NoTubes, Race Face Performance Products, Royal Racing, 7 idp, FTI Consulting, Smith Optics, WTB, OneUp Components, Clif Bar, Evoc, Val d’allos
Music: Azad Right — Son of Sam
Thanks to: Fred Glo, Gaetan Riou, Matt Wragg

Précédent Nouvelle Le Maiden World Cup remporte le prix du vélo Downhill de l'année Nous sommes fiers d’annoncer que selon le magazine Decline, le Maiden World Cup est le meilleur vélo Downhill de 2016! 
Prochain Nouvelle Video: Carson Storch in Barcelona Our newest freeride team member crosses the pond for warmer temperatures and new spots. Good vibes in this film by Harrison Mendel.