Sixth Element To Supply British Olympic Tokyo 2020 Team

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British Cycling has asked British wheel builders Sixth Element to supply their XC team wheels.

With the Tokyo 2020 Olympic Games only a year and a bit off, training plans are firmly focussed on Tokyo 2020, and no doubt the team riders are looking to have their equipment dialled in so they can focus on physical and mental preparation.

Sixth Element Wheels Simon Watts tokyo 2020
Simon Watts, British Cycling Lead XC Coach

The wheels that the team riders have started with are Sixth Element’s Superlight 29ers: the rims weigh less than 300g each and are a mixture of two types of carbon: T700 and the finer (and lighter) T800. Rim widths are 23mm internal, 28mm external, and will be raced mainly with 2.2in or 2.25in tyres.

Sixth Element Wheels Tokyo 2020
So you don’t get your team wheels mixed up with any other nations’.

Having given the team the initial batch of wheels, but following further discussions – including with their head coach and their mechanics – they are also going to trial a wider rim in the coming months. This will be a rim that will be made especially for the Olympic team riders, it isn’t one of the options that is currently available to the public, although that may well change if it is well received by the team.

While some of the wheel parts (rims and spokes) aren’t UK manufactured, the hubs are by Hope, and the development and selection of rim type and designs, plus the physical hand-building and quality assurance, all happens in the UK. Come to that, in the North West of England, where the team are based too… ‘North West England, the Marin County of the UK’… new tourism strap line?!

Sixth Element Wheels Tokyo 2020
Bet FTP test results gets first pick of the hubs?
Graham Stock of Sixth Element said:
“We’re delighted to be supporting the British Cycling team and the UK’s push for Olympic success in 2020. On a wider front, this development with British Cycling is part of our on-going growth. Our growth has global ambition – we’ve recently opened in Whistler to serve the North American market direct, and the feedback that we receive from the UK Olympians in due course will obviously influence our wheel designs on both sides of the Atlantic. We firmly have Australia and New Zealand in our sights as the next stage. Far from drawing up a Brexit draw-bridge (not that I’m suggesting that will be the out-come given recent events) our view is that the world is a small place, and our approach to giving every customer the best possible product and the best possible service applies anywhere, not just in the UK.”

Hannah Dobson

Hannah came to Singletrack having decided there must be more to life than meetings. Having worked in policy and project management roles at the Scottish Parliament and in local government, Hannah had organisational skills that SIngletrack needed. She also likes bikes, and likes to write.

Hannah likes all bikes, but especially unusual ones. If it’s a bit odd, or a bit niche, or made of metal, she’s probably going to get excited. If it gets her down some steep stuff, all the better. She’ll give most things a go once, she tries not to say no to anything on a bike, unless she really thinks it’s going to hurt. She’s pretty good with steri-strips.

More than bikes, Hannah likes what bikes do. She thinks that they link people and places; that cycling creates a connection between us and our environment; bikes create communities; deliver freedom; bring joy; and improve fitness. They're environmentally friendly and create friendly environments.

Hannah tries to write about all these things in the hope that others might discover the joy of bikes too.

Comments (11)

    This is great news for Sixth Element and Team GB as I don’t think I’ve read a bad reveiw yet. Plus I’m sure any feedbeck will only make their wheels even better so it’s win win.

    Don’t the riders just ride their normal sponsership bike in the Olympics? There were no team wheels in use at the London Olympics..

    So the only BRITISH element is Hope Hubs and the guys at Sixth Element lacing the foreign rim and spokes to the aforementioned hub, not exactly a high five for British engineering talent.

    seems a fairly short sighted response gavalar, don’t think there are dozens of carbon rims manufacturers to choose from in the UK

    @footflaps – the road team all used custom bikes, rather than their team equipment, as do the track team, so why not the MTB guys? Olympics always throw up a hotch-potch of equipment anyway.

    Well done to SE. Always come across as a good company and customer service good. Bravo.

    You sure about that Njee? 2 different brands on show here from Rio:

    Forcing them to give up familiar equipment just for one race would be pretty stupid imo

    Can we have a look at a man hitting a rim with a hammer again?

    great news for british cycling, well done Graham.

    no mention that my local “Tuesday club who rides wednesdays” are nearly a full contingent on SE wheels ;0)

    I’m glad they’re going to have wheels…

    Awesome product, customer service is excellent and the wheels are very good and with crash warranty…cant be better than that…been abusing mine for years now, and despite all the inevitable scratches, they never fail.

    I’d expect Trek and Mavic will be happy with this as it’s likely their athletes who make it.

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