Is DH dead ?

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  • Is DH dead ?
  • Hob Nob
    Member

    Maybe SDA is less popular as the BDS has gotten a bit better?

    So popular that for the last few years they have to open up the entries with anyone with a licence just to try and fill them? Numbers are falling, the bigger race series’ (other than Pearce) have all struggled to fill up. There is virtually no racing in South Wales these days, other than Taff Buggy.

    The little local races are good though, ~£20 a pop, only one day and they can get away with only 50-75 people showing up, whereas the big races needed 200+ at a minimum to work.

    I rode with a big group of people who raced the BDS a few years ago, probably 10-15 of us, none have a DH bike any more and most race enduro instead now.

    Me, I got sick of spending £65 on a race entry to get my bike wrecked on various sh*tty uplifts, to spend 30 minutes on it over a weekend if I was lucky.

    I still race the local events, but that’s my lot. The difference is, a lot more people use trail bikes at them.

    scruff
    Member
    Premier Icon kimbers
    Subscriber

    the problem is that a DH bike needs an uplift, even though we have mountains, there really arent the uplifts and certainly not the chairlifts. In the Alps its a different matter!

    Premier Icon Northwind
    Subscriber

    legend – Member

    About 5 weeks ago, and there was space for single uplifts for each run. Since then there have been multiple posts from Tally on Facebook saying he was cancelling uplift days or was going to have to cancel if more people didn’t book on soon.

    IIRC he was adding extra days at short notice as the scheduled ones were busy or full, then had to pull one or two of the extras.

    There’s usually space for single runs just because of the ebb and flow of riding, people miss runs, spanner themselves, etc. Even on a fully booked day you can usually get on most runs if you wave Elliot a fiver and your most seductive smile 😆

    crystaltipps
    Member

    I wonder if the SDAs were a victim of their own success to some extent. A few years ago it was really difficult to get a place unless you were sitting waiting for entries to open. Maybe people stopped bothering to try after a while and moved on to other things like uplifts and enduros.

    legend
    Member

    IIRC he was adding extra days at short notice as the scheduled ones were busy or full, then had to pull one or two of the extras.

    Kinda, he announced in October that he would run every weekend in November.

    I know there’s often space for singles (I’ve been on the uplift once or twice in the last 10 years), this was definitely quieter than usual.

    Premier Icon Northwind
    Subscriber

    Yeah, but you see what I’m getting at? The cancellations probably aren’t a sign of low demand, seems more likely that the extra places show the opposite.

    Maybe everyone’s waiting for the chairlift 😉

    Premier Icon cookeaa
    Subscriber

    Is DH dead?

    No it’s just winter at the minute, so there’s just fewer people trundling about on 200mm+ DH bikes, when the sun comes back out to play so will the DH bikes.

    TBH if I didn’t already have a relatively worthless but perfectly functional old DH bike I’d probably just buy a 140 – 160mm Enduro/AM/Trail type bike to ride exactly the same stuff, but be able to winch back up a little more easily…

    As it is, Owning a DH bike is bit of a guilty pleasure, it doesn’t get anything like enough use, it’s a bit “functionally limited” and you either have to push back up or book on an uplift service, but when it does get used, it’s still lots of fun. but you could look at Time Trial bikes in a similar way…

    I suppose “Gravity Enduro” is attracting a good chunk of those that would be buying DH bikes otherwise, but I don’t think DH is “Dead” people are probably just being a bit more proportionate or realistic about the types of bikes and riding they want… I think you’ll see more people racing the smaller local series on shorter travel bikes over the next couple of years as they try the “One bike to Rule them all” experiment…

    oldschool
    Member

    Not dead, but diluted maybe. 160mm travel bikes go downhill ‘nearly’ as well as a DH rig, and then allow you to peddle up ‘nearly’ as well as an XC bike. I for one don’t ride my DH bike unless it’s an uplift day, since swapping my XC bike for a 160 AM type set up, it’s just a pain. I few years ago I’d ride it for the day, and suffer the up hill/flat sections. Now I can enjoy all of the ride. Not stopping me eyeing up a new frame for next year though, but they are an extravagance if we are honest.

    mikey74
    Member

    the problem is that a DH bike needs an uplift,

    No they don’t: Plenty of popular venues are push-up most of the times, if not all of the time.

    Premier Icon kelvin
    Subscriber

    Perhaps people keep their DH bikes longer, and that’s why less are seen for sale?

    glasgowdan
    Member

    Shops probably just don’t generally sell or display many DH bikes because the average customer isn’t cool or brave enough to ride proper DH 🙂 A proper downhiller has to go to the black market, buying their 200mm off the government radar down a dingy service station near Preston.

    xiphon
    Member

    Ive recently purchased a 224 frame, which I know full well might only get used 8-10 times per year max, but I’ll keep it for years. (The 222 bought in 2008 is now hung on the wall in the garage, retired, next to the race plates.)

    But to me, no other bike discipline quite has the same adrenaline surge as riding flat out on “the big bike”

    _tom_
    Member

    Currently got my Voltage set up with 160mm forks and 150mm shock but considering going all out with a Boxxer and putting the shock in 180mm setting. I do like it in the shorter travel settings but do kinda miss the stiffness and ploughability of a big bike with dual crowns. I pretty much only ride dh so for me it’s definitely not dead! I just happen to currently ride it on a 160mm bike.

    ianv
    Member

    There were more people in la massana for the wc than for the vuelta. Some weekends at Valnord there was close to 1000 riders apparently.

    Race numbers might be down as your average punter would rather ride all weekend rather than pay big bucks for a few runs, uplifts might not be as full because there is a lot more choice of venues to dilute demand. But, there are loads of people riding the local push up venues round here (Yorkshire) and there are a lot more young kids riding as well. So, not dead.

    Premier Icon richieokeefe1
    Subscriber

    its a shame about the innerleithen up lift but the enduro last year was packed out !

Viewing 16 posts - 41 through 56 (of 56 total)

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