Mongolia stage race – bike dilemma?
I am taking part in the Mongolia Bike Challenge late August (first stage race). Long stages, lots of double track, but looks an amazing adventure…
I am 6’4 and ride a 29er hard tail all the time (Cotic Solaris). As I up my training I am beginning to think I may want a bit more comfort for 950k in 7 days…
Looking at a 29er short travel full suss (Giant Anthem or Scott) but seems poor value as when I get home I know I will go back to Solaris for 90%+ of my riding.
Thinking maybe of buying a Giant Trance 29er frame and putting a 140/120 or 130/110 fork on it. Not quite perfect for Mongolia, but give me something different in the stable when I get home.
Others have suggested I go for a 140/120 but 27.5 wheels.
Any thoughts most welcome!Posted 3 years ago
Thanks Yak / Woody2000 – Salsa looks perfect for Mongolia and USE is the cheapest option if I don’t want o spend on a new bike…
I guess what I am mulling over is:
1/ would I be stupid taking a longer travel bike to a mile munching stage race (pump up shock to stiffen back end a bit)? Salsa does not help when I get home ‘cos I don’t need full suss in Surrey…
2/ would I be stupid considering a 27.5 for a long stage race (I am 6’4) Full suss 27.5 with 140/120 fork option gives me maximum difference to my 29er hard tail for use after Mongolia…
Having never ridden a stage race I don’t really know what to expect and don’t want to end up wishing I had my Solaris…Posted 3 years agoYakSubscriber
I would take the Solaris as that’s what you have and its a very versatile and capable bike. I presume you are doing all-day rides with no problems on it. If so, and you’ve not been forewarned of a 7day gnarfest in Mongolia, then stick with what you know. Sus post if you are worried about comfort.Posted 3 years agojamesoSubscriber
Envious, always wanted to see Mongolia .. : )
a bit more comfort for 950k in 7 days
For the terrain I’ve seen in pics, HT like a solaris with a well-known and fitted riding position should be fine. Bigger tyres / less PSI is good ime. Also bar height that feels good for an average day may be a bit low for 7 days – less weight on the hands is good.
would I be stupid taking a longer travel bike to a mile munching stage race
Not stupid but I don’t see the point, comfort comes from positioning more than suspension in general. Better the bike you know, every time.Posted 3 years agoadshSubscriber
I’m hoping to do trans portugal next May. Planning on a carbon 29er with hideously expensive Syntace flex post or a Spearfish. FWIW if it’s not technical I find HT more comfortable as you can get out of the saddle more to rest your butt without heaps of rear suspension wallowing.
Someone posted a test here the other day that showed an FSA K force set back carbon post as having more flex than a thudbuster short travel!
Anyhow there is no substitute for extensive testing – the time for which is fast running out? Generally no major equipment changes close to the eventPosted 3 years ago
Thanks guy – and makes sense… Not doing me any favors with the, “I need a new bike” agenda 😉
Had been convinced I would HT until about a month ago when one of last year’s top finishers said that this year he would be back with full suss… “nobody complained about too much comfort”. And then yes, an all day on the Solaris when out with the mates is OK (in fact its a lot of fun); but a couple of weekends ago I went for a long solo ride to up the tempo (less social, but better for training). Started to suffer, particularly pushing on through rougher tracks, and ended up having to take the pressure off massively; not because the legs wouldn’t cope, just that the lower back was complaining. I know I need to do more core work, but I am doing Mongolia for the adventure and want to “enjoy” the experience rather than suffer through to the end…Posted 3 years agoskellnonchSubscriber
From my experience, full sus is more enjoyable, spend PLENTY of time making sure you have the most comfortable saddle that fits you perfectly and use bucketfuls of chamois cream (check you are not allergic to whatever brand it is first)* Make sure you take some Savlon with you too.
*A guy we rode with did the Epic and had a reaction with his chamois cream, something to do with one of the ingredients, the result was an infection that nearly took his bollocks… if he had left it much longer it would have been game over for him.Posted 3 years agoskellnonchSubscriber
House – Member
skellnonch “From my experience, full sus is more enjoyable” – everybody on short travel or any on longer??
I did a 9 day race in South Africa on short travel 1 x 11 as light as I could get it within reason c.23lb, good match of comfort & lightweight for long days in the saddle, vast majority on short travel, some on slighty more 120-140, mix of FS/HTs – all the ‘pros’ on 100mm HTs.Posted 3 years agoStraightlinerSubscriber
I’ve done a few stage races, and split evenly between full sus and hardtail.
The key thing is that the bike is comfortable and fits well, the suspension does have it’s advantages in terms of improving comfort, but generally adds weight and most critically is another thing to go wrong. If the event has good neutral tech support then fine, but if it’s going to be patchy then a hardtail may be worthwhile. If you’re going for the adventure and not to win, then reliability is one of the key items to consider.
Are you planning on using bottles or a camelbak thing? Hardtails will usually have two bottle cages, whereas a full sus won’t and this may swing your decision. If you’ve already identified issues with your back, going back-pack free may be a good thing.
As you finish each day, make sure you get out of your shorts and clean yourself up as soon as possible. Try and use clean shorts each day, or at least wash and dry them overnight and use a cream with some anti-bacterial capability. Sudocrem is actually very good for multiple days in the saddle.
The suspension post isn’t as bad a suggestion as some people make out, but bear in mind if you’re trying to get back on on a hill that the saddle will be higher than normal and needs your body weight to bring it to the correct level, which can lead to amusing attempts to get going.Posted 3 years ago
The topic ‘Mongolia stage race – bike dilemma?’ is closed to new replies.