The first World Cup event of 2019 in almost here

The stars of the Downhill mountain biking will gather in Maribor, Slovenia at the end of the month for the first of eleven events spread across the three disciplines of Cross Country Olympic XCO, Downhill (DH) and Cross-Country Short Circuit (XCC).

The UCI have been an organised bunch over the last 12 months and have even released the calendar for 2020 due to it being an Olympic year.

However, back to 2019 as the action promises to be full of thrills and spills and plenty of intense action as the worlds best commence battle.

If 2018 is anything to go by, then we are in for a real treat after Switzerland’s Nino Schurter took the crown in the men’s Cross Country, and Frenchman Amaury Pierron took the top prize in the Downhill discipline.

For British fans, Rachel Atherton came out on top in a gruelling contest with fellow Brit Tahnée Seagrave to claim the Downhill title and the 31-year-old is once again the favourite and well worth keeping tabs on in the live betting at sites such as  www.novibet.co.uk for ongoing value throughout the year.

Maribor – Slovenia

The Downhill season gets under way in Europe in the city of Maribor.

It will be the first time the city has hosted a World Cup event since 2010 although the circuit has been lauded as one of the very best with plenty of intense action set to ensue.

The Riders

Amaury Pierron is the man to beat in the man’s category after sweeping to the title in 2018.

The Frenchman defeated Britain’s Danny Hart by294 points to sweep to his maiden downhill title and he will be eager to repeat that feat in 2019.

The British siblings of Gee Atherton (competing in the men’s downhill) and Rachel Atherton has made the bold move of moving from Trek Factory racing to racing on bikes developed under their own brand – Atherton Bikes.

34-year-old Gee Atherton had a torrid time in 2018 finishing down in ninth place but the 5-time former World Cup winner and two-time downhill world champion looks to bring in a new era for the Atherton’s on their own equipment.

His sister Rachel is looking to capitalise on a truly remarkable 2018 where she claimed her sixth downhill World Cup success and also stormed to downhill victory at the World Championships for her fifth title.

The likes of Tahnée Seagrave will be attempting to get the better of her countrywomen in what promises to be a thrilling tournament for the women.

Where Next?

After Slovenia, it will be the turn of the Cross-Country disciplines as the World Cup moves to Albstadt in Germany before a trip to the Czech Republic.

The next downhill event after Maribor does not take place until the beginning of June when the series heads to Fort William in Scotland and by then we will have a clearer picture of who is on form and who needs to do what in an action packed year of mountain bike action.

How to customize your mountain bike

fat tire mountain bike single speed

Well there really isn’t a rule on how to do this. But if you’re happy with your component group, then start making some changes on how your bike looks. A lot of people will change out the color of their grips, bars, stem, seat and etc. Changing out those items is a sure fire way to give it a personal touch.

Personally I like to accentuate some of the subtle colors that the bike has. For example, if my frame is orange, but the graphics like the logos are white, then I’d go with a white saddle and grips. If the bars and stem are black, I’d keep it the way it is.

One of my bikes had a pretty blue frame with white letters. So I made sure I got white wheels and a white saddle as well as a white seat collar(eventually).

Titus Rockstar 29er mtnbikeriders.com

The Moe followed the same idea with one of his older bikes. At the time there was a tire company called Sweet Skinz that sold these colored tires. They had a variety of designs that could make your bike’s appearance pop.

My newest bike in the stable is all white with black logos. I decided to go with a USA theme with it. I ordered red bars, white grips, blue water bottle cage,  USA flag water bottle and a frame bag that is black and blue. I thought about getting star stickers to make it more patriotic, but I’ll probably do that later on.

Gravity Single Speed Fat Tire moutain bike
I decided to go with a red white and blue theme.
wake best bicycle handle bars
Wake Best Bicycle 780mm bar and short stem.
fat tire bike
White grips
gravity fat tire single speed mountain bike
Though my frame bag doesn’t match my cage…I’m ok with it because not every shade of black on this bike matches with each other…right? I’m going to put my snacks in there!
 Ahren's WiseCracker bottle opener
Last but not least, my Ahren’s WiseCracker bottle opener

So that’s about it…customizing your mountain bike can be as easy as changing out the colors of your accessories. Unless  you get your frame painted or Plasti-Dip it, then you’ll have to work with what you got, and that’s what makes it fun!

Therapy on two wheels

The Moe and RL of MtnBikeRiders.com

One of the benefits of riding with close friends is the talk time you get. I’ve called it Therapy on Two Wheels. I’m not sure about you, I tend to ride with some of my best friends. These are the people who know me and my story like the back of their hand. One of my riding partners is The Moe. We’ve been friends for nearly 20 years. Our friendship actually started from mountain biking.

Throughout the years we’ve both gone through some challenging times. The Moe had to deal with a divorce about 10 years ago, and recently I had to deal with divorce. Those two events in our lives were…to say the least tougher than anything we’ve had to deal with.

The Moe and RL
The day I was going to sign my divorce papers. I needed to go on a ride just tone down my anxiety.

Fortunately we had mountain biking to help us cope. The Moe and I would often schedule rides and for those two hours, we talk about all sorts of stuff. It starts off with the latest news with each other, new toys or gadgets we just bought. But a few more miles into it, the real stuff gets aired out.

What’s cool about Therapy on Two Wheels is that while you do get angry or frustration comes out about what you’re talking about. You can easly let out that energy to the pedals.  Sometimes I just zone out and let it all go as I roll through the trail

After all that purging, there’s usually a peace that comes over you and allows you to take stock of how good life is. While bombing down the hills, I am usually smiling ear to ear and quenching all that angst as the cool air hits my pretty face.

So the next time you’re feeling stuff, need to vent or get a different perspective, try mountain biking with a good friend. You’ll find that talking through life stuff while riding is definitely helpful.

When should you stop eating before a ride?

carb loading

For years I’ve heard of people “carb-loading” before a big ride and or a run. Not really sure if that’s really a thing or if it’s a myth. Personally, I use it as an excuse to eat a lot of spaghetti…which happens to be one of my favorite foods.  Some people say it works for them and others it doesn’t.

But if you’re anything like me, an average mountain biker who happens to be too short for my BMI, then let me share with you what I do. If you’re one of those super fit XC guys that loses weight when they sneeze or fart, then click on the back button or better yet, go for a ride.


Alright, now that it’s just us REAL Mountain Bikers, let’s get to it. For me, if I know I’m riding in the afternoon around 5pm, then I usually stop eating anything around 1:30pm. If I put anything in my stomach, even a drink after 3:30pm…then it just makes me feel sick when I’m riding. All that gloop is sloshing around in my belly and eventually, it will want to come back up…eew nasty. There’s nothing worse than the feeling of nausea when you’re riding…especially if you’re trying to climb a hill.

If for some reason I do get hungry before my ride, having a piece of fruit helps. I usually will chase it down with half of a Redbull. Anything more then I’ll be feeling it during my ride.

Ok so far we’ve learned that about 3.5 hours before a ride should be the cut off time for food. But if I get a little hungry, small fruit. Taking these precautionary steps helps me have a better time riding. That means I don’t have to carry any food on me just in case I bonk. All I have to do is bring a water bottle and myself. Here’s a pro-tip: carry some non-perishable candies in your saddle bag or hydration pack. Nothing crazy, or anything. But in the event you do hit the wall or bonk, you can easily consume some simple sugars to get you back on the bike.

Candy!

I bought a new bike- Gravity Deadeye Single Speed Fat Tire Bike

Gravity Deadeye Single Speed Fat Tire Bike

About a week ago, I got into a bidding war on eBay for a new Gravity Deadeye Single Speed Fat Tire Bike. Normally these sell on BikesDirect.com for about $299. Since I felt that I was getting a good deal, I kept bidding. I won the auction at $220 shipped.

The bike arrived at my doorstep in 6 days and  I was excited to put it together.

Gravity Deadeye Single Speed Fat Tire Bike

The bike was packaged nicely. Frame was protected by foam and other wrapping material.

Gravity Deadeye Single Speed Fat Tire Bike

Here it is on my stand. It also came with two different wheel tapes, the red one was already installed, then there was also a yellow set. I guess if I want to change things up a bit I could. Oh it also arrived with 2 rear cogs. The 22t was already on the wheel the there was a 18t in the box. I’m sticking with the 22t…I’m in no shape or form to try and pedal the 18t.

Gravity Deadeye Single Speed Fat Tire Bike

Tires were inflated to only 15psi and already it felt too much. I’m probably going to drop it down a few psi, let’s say around 12-13 and see how that feels. Bikesdirect.com claims it can fit up to a 3.5 tire. Since tires of that size aren’t necessarily cheap, I’ll live with the 3.0 for as long as I can.

Gravity Deadeye Single Speed Fat Tire Bike

Equipped with mechanical Tektro Novela disc brakes. I actually love mechs over hydros, so much simpler.Gravity Deadeye Single Speed Fat Tire Bike

The no name bar and stem are going to be replaced soon. My T-Rex arms will need a 50-60mm stem and I usually go with wider bars, somewhere along the lines of 780mm-800mm. Besides having all that leverage will help with climbing on a single speed.  Gravity Deadeye Single Speed Fat Tire Bike

The color scheme on the Gravity Deadeye Single Speed Fat Tire Bike is a little too conservative for me. I may switch things up with different colored bars, grips and etc. I’m still trying to decide…once I get it installed, I’ll make sure I post an update. Gravity Deadeye Single Speed Fat Tire Bike

I haven’t had a chance to get it on the trail yet since it’s been raining pretty good where I live. I probably will have an opportunity to try it out next weekend after it dries out. Gravity Deadeye Single Speed Fat Tire Bike

Spec sheet:

gravity deadeye single speed specs

It’s been years since I’ve ridden a single speed mountain bike, so I’m really looking forward to throwing up…oh yea that’s one of the side effects of single speeds…the hurling from all that exersion your put your body through. Fun times ahead!

How to strip paint off your bike-Revisited

how to strip paint off a bicycle frame

The original article was published back in 2007 when aluminum frames were more abundant than carbon frames, so that means you should only do this DIY on steel or alloy frames.  This process used a simple chemical spray remover that could be bought at Walmart. To learn how to strip paint off your bike frame, simply click on the link HERE!

how to strip bike paint

*Remember, don’t get this stuff on your skin, it burns!

The problem with XC mountain biking

mountain biking

One of the beefs I have with XC mountain biking is this constant need to go fast. What I mean is, people can get so caught up with their Personal Record or wanting to be King of the Mountain. Hey, I get it, you want to see how well you’re progressing with your training and riding.

But my main issue is that people just don’t take the time to soak it all in. Enjoy the scenery, smell that fresh air and ride in a casual pace. Years ago we coined the term “Relaxed Vibe.” It basically means we go out there and have fun. We take a bunch of photos, videos and tell jokes.

mtnbikeriders.com

Personally I appreciate those types of rides more than the ball busting fast paced rides.  For starters, a relaxed vibe ride means less injuries. When you’re going at 100%, you’re more likely to tear something and the margin for errors are way higher. Crashes, breakdowns, and other problems can be mitagated by going at a slower pace.

So on your next ride, go a little slower. Soak up the experience and have fun.

I could have bought a (fill in the blank) with the money you paid for your new mountain bike

Let’s face it, mountain bikes aren’t cheap. I know guys that have dropped $5-$7k on a mountain bike. Each time I hear of it, I sorta cringe. You see I’m what you call a cheapskate, AKA BOB-Brother on a Budget. I come from no money and because I have three daughters, I still don’t have money. Any of the mountain bikes I’ve purchased are usually acquired through some extensive dealings to get a bro-discount. I make sure I try and pay at cost for a bike. If anything, having a used bike is the way to go. Just like cars, their resale value drops like a sledgehammer once they leave the showroom floor.

Not sure if you knew this, but I’m a huge motorcycle fan. I’ve bought and sold over 31 motorbikes in the past few years. It’s become a big hobby for me. I look for bargains or in some scenarios, a basket case and I’ll recondition and resell for a profit. I’ve gotten pretty good at it and out of all my dealings I can say I’ve only lost money 2 times. That loss only equates to about $50…but if you consider all the profit I make on all my other dealings, then I really didn’t take a loss.

Anyhow, when I heard some friends drop mad-cash on new bikes…my mind immediately goes through a thought process of “I could have bought a nice motorcycle for that!” Sometimes my mind ends up speaking on my behalf by blurting out…”DAAAANG!!!” Then I also think about how many months of rent that could pay or how many car payments that could take care of. I also think about how many tattoos can I get with that money?!

But hey, to each his own, right? I mean, you’re going to do what you think is best for you. For me, if I had $4k in my pocket, I’d probably find a mountain bike for about $1500, then use the rest to buy 1-2 motorcycles to flip so I can get a return on that cash I just spent.

Badass mountain biker doesn’t ride with a water bottle or hydration pack

mtnbikeriders.com

We met up with Steve, a mountain biker who says he doesn’t ride with a water bottle or hydration pack. We asked why he doesn’t and he said “Hydrating is for sissies! I’ve trained my body to recycle sweat so I’m never thirsty during a ride.” Though we were skeptical of his practices, we were slightly impressed and curious about how this would work. We asked if we could tag along on his ride to see how he does it.
mountain biking website, mtnbikeriders.com

As we were riding, I got thirsty. I decided to take a swig of my water bottle. I asked him if he needed a drink. He smirked and then he stood up on his bike to pedal ahead of me. About half way through the ride we stopped to rest. By this time I can see him sweating like a whore in a church.

I offered him a drink, he said no then says, “Watch this!” The dude started making grunting noises and faces as if he was about to drop a deuce! Next thing you know, his body was absorbing all the sweat he just lost! Ya man, his skin was bone dry! Right after that he got on his bike and pedaled away…wow…he really is badass!