Words Dean Hersey Photography Chipps
Once upon a not very distant time ago, mountain bikes were easily recognisable and labelled. If they were cars, then short travel hardtail bikes were for the Lycra clad whippets racing cross-country, lightweight and fast, similar to your classic soft-top roadster. Meanwhile, youngsters rolled around in skinny jeans and T shirts on tiny hardtail frames with the one brake and a sole purpose to hit tombstones of dirt. I liken these bikes to the impracticable beach buggy.
Of course we had ‘BIG’ bikes for the speedsters, the monster trucks of mountain bikes, built for racing downhill over any obstacle. With adaptations, downhill race bikes could be tweaked into cliff-dropping freeride weapons capable of jumps that would scare Evel Knievel.
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