Ibex Asta Expert-Review Initiated

Check out the newest rig to be tested by MtnBikeRiders.com. This is the Ibex Asta Expert.


Asta Expert Specifications
Frame: 6069 Aluminum
Fork: Rock Shox Reba RL 100mm Travel
Rear Shock: Rock Shox Monarch RT
Shifters: SRAM X-9 Trigger
Front Derailleur: Sram X-7 Low Clamp
Rear Derailleur: Sram X-7 Long Cage
Crankset: FSA Comet 175mm (42/32/22T)
Cassette: Sram 9-Speed (11-34T)
Chain: KMC Z99
Brakes: Avid Elixer R
Rims: WTB Speed Disc Cross Country
Hubs: WTB Laser Disc Lite
Tires: WTB Wolverine 2.2 Race, XC 60tpi
Headset: Cane Creek S-3
Cockpit Set: FSA
Saddle WTB Speed-V
Pedals: Wellgo Cr-Mo Clipless

Here’s some pit’chers…

S’mo pit’chers…

This bike is pretty. The white pearl is something that I rarely see on a bike.

Here’s a video of me unboxing the Ibex Asta.

Ibex Bicycles are BACK!

You read it right, Ibex Bicycles is back in business! They even brought out a new model called the Maroc that is available in a 26″ or 29er frame.

Here’s a teaser of their 29er Maroc frame.

One thing unique about this frame, its in raw carbon. Meaning it wasn’t painted, and the downtube and chain stay is lined with Kevlar to help protect it from trail abuse. Make sure you go over its geometry; the head tube angle is slacker than most at 70 degrees.

The Asta is back in production as well as the re-engineered Ignition. Make sure you check out Ibex Bicycles to see what they’re up to.


Shimano Winter Series #4: RL’s Downhill Report

This was race #4 of a 6 part series at Fontana. What’s neat is we’re starting to see familiar faces of other racers and we’ve made a few friends here and there.

On Friday I was able to take one practice run right after the marked the DH course. One run just isn’t enough to get familiar with the course and even find hidden lines that would work better on your race run. With that said, I made sure I took a helmet cam video during practice and watched it over and over again just so I can see where I needed to go.

Come Sunday, I arrived at the venue late. Basically as soon as I pulled up, they announced that sign ups were closed for the day. I quickly ran as fast as I could to the ladies that did registration, and because of their kindness, they let me in. I soon checked the seed list and saw that my old rival, Johnny Dow of KHS Bicycles was my only competition. As soon as I turned around, JD showed some relief that he would have someone to race with. We chatted for a bit and we parted ways since I had to get my gear and bike ready for the race.

A few last minute check up on my bike and I was ready to roll. We boarded the shuttle vans about an hour after registration and at the top of the mountain, JD and I hung out. What’s funny about JD is that he likes to make you think that he’s not a good rider. But I’ve seen how he works on the trail and the guy does have some talent.

As they called up each group to race, a few of us had to wait until the end to line up so that gave us an opportunity to cheer on our team mates as they rode through the course. First it was Tony Finch, man that guy flows like water. Then it was a Moe, Joe and eventually Kim’s group as well as my group (JD and I) lined up.

Right before Donny counted down JD, I gave him a pat on the back and said for him to have fun and be careful (we had seen quite a few crashes already). Off he goes and he had a great start and I watched him disappear as he went into one of the turns. What’s funny is, I normally don’t get nervous until Donny counts me down from 15 seconds. I take a deep breath, and as soon as he said 1, I pedaled.

I rode through the somewhat unfamiliar course as fast and as safe as I could. I knew I was going way too slow on some of the parts. I make it through some of the toughest sections in which we had seen many riders go down and I eventually make it to the bottom of the mountain. Before I get to the lower rock garden, there’s an inclined road that I normally would sprint through. But my legs were feeling the burn and I sat down and pedaled as hard as I could. I get to the rock garden and there are still a large number of spectators watching and I maneuver through the area, but I felt like I was in slow motion. I finally pass the garden and hit the infamous wall.

In the last few races, I hammered the wall to make up for lost time, but that day, my body was worn out. My legs were burning, my lungs were on fire and I had nothing left but a weak pedal through the finish line. I meet up with my team mates and ask them how far I was behind Johnny, Moe said he counted about 30 seconds and Kim’s face wasn’t reassuring as she said that I took a while to get through the line.

Walking to the awards ceremony.

Though no mechanicals or crashes occurred, I felt that my run was lack luster. Results were up and I saw that JD took first by beating me with a whopping 6 seconds! I walk over to JD to congratulate the fella, that was a well deserved win. JD is one great rider and I was honored that he and I were able to compete against each other. The last few races, he wasn’t able to ride due to illness and he really showed his determination this past weekend.

Now that the race is over, I keep going back in my mind about all the scenarios where I could have done better. I’m sure everyone does this and I am pretty resolved that more training, practice runs and time in the gym will be needed to execute a better race run.

So here’s what was encouraging. When I entered my first DH race, I placed 15th out of 22 or something like that in the 27-34 age group. I purposely gained weight (its called the holidays) and raced in the 200 Club since my previous race time was more consistent with riders in that group. But when I saw my race results this past weekend, I was pleased to see that I would have placed at least 8th in the 27-34 category. Keep in mind 27-34 are a fast group of skinny riders. Though 8th place isn’t podium, but I considered it progress that I could hold my own against some really fast racers in the 27-34, I figured once the winter series were over, that I’d drop at least 20-25lbs or more and compete with my respective age group. As for now, 2 more races to go and I’m already looking forward to go against JD!

I’d like to thank our sponsors for supporting us through the series, Evomo Clothing, Ergon, Hoss MTB and I’d also like to thank Ibex Bikes for providing me the Ibex Ignition Frame to race with.

The lil’ Bike that Could-Ibex Ignition 3

Don’t get my title wrong, the Ibex Ignition 3 has impressed me beyond its capabilities. Ibex Bikes sells the Ignition as one of their “All Mountain” bikes. The bike was spec’d with decent parts such as Shimano Deore, LX, FSA, Rockshox, Marzocchi and many more. Ibex’s pretty much marketed this bike to be a great XC ride as well as something that could handle some aggressive trail riding.

When I first heard about the downhill race at Fontana back in November, I wanted to race, but didn’t have a downhill rig that that I thought could handle the terrain. Rather than missing out on the race, I decided to enter it with the use of the Ignition 3. The only thing I had to change on the bike was the fork. Joe let me borrow his Marzocchi 66 fork and Moe let me use his 20mm thru axle front wheel. I had also recruited the use of a Sette Stumpy stem to shorten the cock pit since the frame is a large.

After my first race, I was impressed that the Ibex Ignition 3 not only held up, but it really was a great bike for the Fontana course. With that said, I was pretty confident that this bike that was designed with a 120mm (a bit over 4.5″) rear travel frame could easily compete against DH bikes that were 3-5 times more expensive than the Ignition.

So for my second DH race which I had already posted a report about, I used my trusty Ibex Ignition and raced the course the best way I knew how. What was great about the Ignition was its ability to respond to everything I need it to do.

Keep in mind, in both events, my first DH race, during my practice run, I crashed pretty hard. OTB as they say. Then on my second race, during my run, I slammed into a big boulder, but the Ibex still worked like a charm. You know, we’ve had this bike since March and never had to tune it. The bike shifts like butter, suspension works as it should and honestly this bike has been pretty reliable, except for the occasional tightening the rocker arms will need from time to time. Other than that, this bike has been bombproof and DH capable.
Photo courtesy of Sharky

If you’re interested in a do it all bike, you may want to check out the Ibex Ignition. The new Ibex Ignition line for 09 has models starting as low as $699 and all the way up to $1299.

If you’re looking for a bike that CAN do everything, look no further, visit www.IBEXBIKES.com and heck out their Ignition line of bikes.

Ibex Ignition 3: RL’s Update

It was my turn to have fun with the Ibex Ignition 3. Joe and Jeremy both had turns riding this bike and each of them had one thing in common they didn’t like about the Ignition (Iggy). The long stem and riser bar. One of the things Joe mentioned in his previous articles about the Iggy was having to lower the stem the lowest position possible. After doing so, he still felt like the rise was a bit too high.

Enter RL’s garage. I took the reigns of the Iggy a while ago. Since then I’ve made some changes to accommodate my size (I usually ride a medium) and riding style. First up was the bars and stem. I opted for a 1.5 rise and shortened the stem by using the Sette Stumpy stem from Pricepoint.com. This allowed the large cockpit area to become more compact so that my short arms could easily reach the bars. I also did away with the swooping seat post and went with a standard post and scooted my saddle in. Now this baby was getting closer to what I like as far as sizing goes.

I then did away with the front WTB Velociraptor Tires since I didn’t care for them. In its place I installed a Maxxis ADvantage, 2.4 tire. This was perfect for tackling some of the most technical trails SoCal can offer, besides, the ADvantage grip like nothing I’ve ridden before.

Here’s how the Iggy looks nice. The front tire was replaced (yes I kept the back on for now) with the Maxxis ADvantage, shorter stem, lock on Intense grips, Oh I also replaced the rear cassette with an 11-27 Dura Ace cassette. It’s the same one Priscilla has on her bike, but that’s for another article…So there you have it. This is an ALL Mountain bike that I plan on using as my DH Bike. I’m thinking about getting rid of the big ring and placing a bash guard on it since I really won’t be using it for DH purposes. Eh who knows…

Ibex Ignition Update

I’ve been able to get in a few rides the last couple of weeks on the Ibex Ignition 3 and have a few thoughts/impressions for you. They were all night rides so no action pictures of the bike yet. I have to admit that it has been a while since I’ve gotten a good amount of seat time on a 26″ bike let alone a 26″ full suspension. The Ignition 3 is a different animal from my normal ride a 29er but I’m still enjoying it. The biggest change for me is two-fold: 1. 5 inches of travel & 2. All Mountain steering.

1. The 5 inches of travel really change the way I ride. The travel allows me to be more aggressive as it flattens out pretty much everything on the trail. The travel provided by the Marzocchi fork is super plush and has a great lock out feature that I use when climbing. This helps quite a bit with front bob. The rear suspension is still a work in progress as I dial in the correct amount of air pressure. I’m going to try using a different shock pump as I can’t get mine to pump up enough air for me. I also have to say that the BB5 brakes, 7? front & rear, have been amazing. More power than my hydraulics running 7? front, 6? rear. The modulation is very nice as well.

2. The All Mountain steering has been great on the downhills. It is a bit more slowed down in comparison with more XC oriented bike. This makes for more stable descents which fits well with the AM type of bike it is. On the uphills the slower steering requires a little more finessing for doing some technical stuff and the heavier bike makes me a bit slower. Also, because the rear shock is not dialed in just right, I have a hard time with the standing climbs. I experience way too much bobbing in the rear for standing climbs to be productive. I am working on this problem and I hope to have it solved shortly when I use the correct tool.

More thoughts to come as I take the Ibex Ignition 3 out for some more riding including to Aliso Woods for Saturday’s ride.

For more information on the Ibex Ignition 3 click here.

Ibex Ignition 3:Review Initiated

As you saw on my teaser photo, we received newly designed for 2008, an Ibex Ignition 3.
ibex ignition 3

Price: $849.00


6061 Aluminum w/ 5″ Travel

Marzocchi MX Lockout – 120mm
Rear Shock:

Rock Shox BAR 2.1 Air*

Shimano Deore Rapidfire (SL-M530)
Front Derailleur:

Shimano Deore (FD-M530)
Rear Derailleur:

Shimano LX (RD-M581-SGS)

FSA Gamma Drive (44/32/22T)

FSA MegaExo

Shimano HG 50 9-spd (11-34T)

KMC Z9200

Avid BB-5 Mechanical Discs
Avid 7″ Roundagon (185mm)
Avid FR-5

WTB SpeedDisc All-Mountain
Formula Disc
WTB VelociRaptor (26″ x 2.10)
Aheadset STS-2K
UNO Alloy OS (50mm Rise x 670mm)
UNO OS Alloy – 3D Forged
UNO Microadjust Alloy ( 31.6mm dia.)
WTB Speed V Comp

Shimano M505 Clipless w. Cleats

More photos:

Weighs about 35lbs…give or take a few grams.

Lance will be reviewing this bad boy and we’ll also hand it over to Jeremy “Mr 29er” to see how it favors against his hard tail 29er…perhaps we can convince him that 26″ bikes are superior to 29ers….