Our favourite people pick their ultimate bike stable
Victor Lucas is a photographer and filmmaker who has been shooting mountain biking since 2003. He has shot too many World Cup races to count.
Victor has worked with the likes of Hans Rey, Steve Peat, Greg Minnaar, Aaron Gwin, Chris Akrigg and many others.
Trail ripper: 2018 Orange Clockwork 129
Right now, the kind of riding I’m excited about is multi-day adventures in the middle of nowhere. Exploring trails that probably get more traffic from hikers and donkeys than bicycles. Definitely a very different thing to jumpy, bermy, bikepark trails. For the full wilderness experience, camping out is a must, so it’s a challenge to keep the gear to a minimum and make sure the bike is still fun to ride. This is where the Orange Clockwork 29er hardtail comes in. It’s simple, light, strong and easy to pedal (at least until I load it with 15kg of gear). The big wheels and slack geometry compensate surprisingly well for a lack of spring travel – which is a good thing when I’m rattling down a rocky trail with a top heavy load of sandwiches, teabags and camping gear.
The beginning: 2001 Orange Patriot
This was the first full suspension mountain bike I had that actually kind of worked. It went through various transformations while I had it, unfortunately I wanted it to be a downhill bike so I went nuts and spent all my cash on those ridiculous Marzocchi Shiver suspension forks with 190mm of travel.
The Patriot was only designed for 140mm forks, so it’s a credit to Orange that the head tube didn’t just rip straight off on the first drop. I took it to Morzine a couple of times and had a great old time battering through the braking bumps. But it definitely required a chairlift with those forks hanging off the front. Later, I sold the frame to some kid in Dublin called Greg Callaghan – I believe he’s not doing too bad racing the Enduro World Series now. So that little bike had quite a full life.
All enduro-ing: 2015 Specialized S-Works Enduro 650
Fourteen years and many different bikes since the Patriot, this was my first bike with wheels bigger than 26in. It is four years old now but it still does everything I could ask of an enduro bike. (who am I kidding, the bike is way more capable than me!) It’s light, stiff, it handles well, the suspension is plusher than any other bike I’ve had. I’ve done enduro events, trail riding, DH runs in the bikepark, long days in the saddle. If I could jump, I’m sure the bike would handle that too. What’s not to love?