Here is a look at our first round of Sea Otter Classic goodies. Story by Tonya Bray, Photos by Tonya and Corey Keizer.
For all those times you wanted to grab on as your friend rode away from you on the climb, it’s the Bicycle Bungee. Or for all the times you wanted to bring your significant other on a beautiful ride, now you can get a strength workout and bring him (or her) along! The shell is carbon fiber for weight savings and durability and prices at $249. A less expensive version made of plastic will be on the market soon. To purchase and find more information, visit bicyclebungee.com.
I happened to walk into the Cannondale booth as this beauty came out of the box. A private little pre-launch photo op for mtbchick!
With a sexy matte black finish with subtle black graphics, Cannondale continues with the BBQ theme, always my favorite. The 29er (it’s a mountain bike with 29 inch wheels as opposed to 26 inch wheels on most mountain bikes) is designed to roll over bumps more easily and climb like a dream. Most companies have offered a hardtail 29er, and this is Cannondale’s first full suspension 29er. What does this mean for the mountain bike chick and her friends? We get the lightest, best 29er available with the added benefit of full suspension: comfort.
The Giro Aeon is the next step in lightweight performance helmets. Weighing in at 222g, will likely replace the Prolight helmet. The Aeon provides more confidence than the Prolight at first touch. Yes, the Aeon is light, but she offers a beefier shell, more, larger vents (yes more vents!) and a Roc Loc 5 system to customize your fit. This helmet will do, thank you.
The Aeon is available in silver, black and red/black as well as Rabobank and Garmin team colors. For more information visit your LBS (local bike shop) or the Giro web site.
While it seems wrong to offer a carbon wheel on a mountain bike, it feels right. Even as a fairly light rider I am leery of wheels that are too lightweight. Double butted spokes 15/16 and ultra light rims do not surround me with the feeling of comfort. I need light, but I also need, and even more so, durable. While the Easton EC90XC carbon wheels are racing wheels, I am confident I could even train on these wheels if I wanted. however, given the price, it would most likely be an FRO wheel. That’s For Racing Only.
The front wheel offers a standard axle or a 15 QR through axle option. Through axles are becoming more popular among cross country riders– it’s a beefier version of the axle/skewer system that offers more stiffness. A great option for the lightweight rider- you would most likely notice the difference while cornering.
Lightweight wheels, why does it matter? you ask. It’s all about “rotational weight”. Less rotational weight (in your wheels, rims, tires and tubes– if you still use those) means quicker acceleration and it’s easier to maintain pace. But, what if I am not a racer? you ask. No matter. The proportion of your bike’s weight to your body weight needs to be as low as possible even on trail rides. For lightweight riders, it’s always a struggle to find a bike light enough to even the playing field.
I love the bead locking rim. Think: no tire burps. I know so many riders who try to use non-tubeless tires on tubeless rims or non-tubeless rims in general to run a makeshift tubeless system. Since I won the 24 Hours in the Old Pueblo on Mavic UST back in… 2002 or 2003?… when tubeless first came on the scene I have been a staunch UST proponent. Thankfully, Easton has sided with UST and we now have an uber lightweight wheel system that uses UST. UST is the standard for the tubeless rim/tire system.
The Easton EA90XC is available in 26 and 29 inch rims diameter, costs $2500 for the set, is available UST (tubeless) and weighs 1285 g for the 26″ and 1416g for the 29″ pair. We might also add that our good friend Sid Taberlay ride to second place on these wheels his first ride in the Sea Otter Classic short track!