This season I will be mostly riding…

2 Apr

Yesterday my new bike for this season arrived.  Thanks to the guys at Fli Distribution I will be riding under the banner of Oneal/Solid Bikes this year and so will be riding the flag ship XC  Solid suspension bike; the ‘Performance Race’.   The Performance is a full carbon xc linkage bike that weighs in at tidy 9.8kg (or 21.6lbs in old money).

This is the first of the XC race bikes to make it to these shores and after a bit of a wait its good to finally get my hands on it.  Unfortunately it arrived just as some seriously wet weather has hit the UK so its maiden ride may have to wait until Sunday.  Until then its been getting the full fettling treatment in anticipation.

Its not my usual style to be so fastidious with a bike but this is a full on race weapon and I’ll be relying on it to get me through no fewer than four 24hr solo races without missing a beat so it pays to be diligent.  For the most part I will only be using it for racing though I do have some longer training rides planned and of course it’ll need some riding over the next week or so to get used to, ahead of the Muc-Off 8 Enduro.

Despite being feather weight the Solid feels just that for first impressions.  The weight savings mainly come from the full carbon fibre construction, right down to the drop outs, linkage clevises and rocker plates, as well as the full SRAM XX groupset and SID XX World Cup fork.   There’s no ultra-light machined out silliness here, just good use of materials across the board with pretty much everything getting a lick of carbon.

‘That’ cassette is probably the most extreme length SRAM have gone to drop the weight of the XX groupset with a staggering amount of machining from a solid steel billet.  My first experience of XX was back in December when I had a SRAM demo bike for few days and have to say the front shifting was very impressive over all previous SRAM offerings I’d tried.  The rear however had seen a lot of use and abuse and was difficult to dial into one gear but I was assured that was due to the cables and was sorted out after I’d given it back.  It’ll be interesting then to see how it goes from fresh.

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