The latest issue of MBR is out now, packed full of inspiring ideas and routes to help you find new places to get out and ride. Here’s what you’ll find inside MBR November 2021.
ON THE COVER
Joe Barnes cuts loose on the new Blue Doon trail at Fort William. Pic: Pete Scullion.
TRAIL BLAZERS: TIRPENTWYS TRAIL CREW
Can one man make a difference? Ryan Bullimore certainly thought so. He conceived, designed and built a bike park near Pontypool. Ryan died in 2018 but Tirpentwys has blossomed, growing in reputation every year and now drawing in riders from across the UK. mbr goes to South Wales to meet Ryan’s dad, check out the trails and hear first hand how close the locals are to making the tracks official.
SRAM Flight Attendant might sound like it’ll serve you a foil- topped meal, but it’s actually a new suspension system that automaticallyadjustsyour compression damping as you ride. We take a spin on the new system to discover if it really can improve pedalling efficiency without sacrificing bump performance. Plus first rides on the new Whyte E-180 and Moustache Samedi 29 Game 8 e-bikes.
James Bracey puts the Focus Jam on a diet, with lighter wheels and tyres; Ben Day services the dropper post on his Vitus Escarpe; Ben Smith swaps out his posh Zipp Moto wheels for some regular alloy ones on the Kona; Sean takes the Nukeproof Scout hardtail for a beating at BikePark Wales; and PB breaks his e-bike. Again.
Shimano’s XT groupset has always impressed us with its built quality, reliability and performance – now 12-speed, can the latest drivetrain live up to our great expectations? Check out the review after 2,000km of riding. Plus we test a Leatt convertible helmet, Endura MT500 Burner pant, VHS Slapper Tape, and loads more.
Keep riding as the days get shorter, with help from the best dedicated mtb lights. We’ve got 11 to review, including three that’ll actually plug straight into your e-bike’s battery, and four versatile all-in-one options. On test is the Lupine SL X, Exposure Toro Mk12, Nightrider Lumina Dual 1800, Blackburn Dayblazer 1500, Hope R2 LED, Light and Motion Seca and more.
BIKE TEST: MULLET BIKES
What started as the preserve of weird and wonderful niche brands has become the next big thing: the mismatched wheel bike. Boasting the rollover advantages of a 29in front wheel, and the reduced weight, increased strength and nimbleness of a 27.5in rear wheel, brands sporting mullets say they represent the best of both worlds. We put the theory to the test, with the Specialized Status and Santa Cruz Bronson, and the YT Decoy and Nukeproof Megawatt e-bikes.
FIT AND FAST – BULLETPROOF TRAINING
There’s a new series starting this month, showing us how to bulletproof every area of your body in turn to get the most out of your riding, with coach-to-the- pros Johnny Thompson from Fit4Racing. This month we kick off the most frequently mangled body part in the pursuit of mtb happiness: the shoulder. Find out how to make yours trail-proof.
SKILLS: BE STABLE
Riding well is not a magical talent that some have and some don’t, we can all learn how to do it thanks to modern mountain biking techniques that break it down step by step. The first lesson is to gain stability, argues Andy Barlow from Dirt School – he shows us how to gain more satisfaction from being in control, how to go faster because of it, and expose ourselves to fewer risks too.
BLUE DOON TRAIL
The UK’s longest blue-graded descent has just opened in Fort William. Accessed by the famous gondola uplift, it’s 8km of twisting, turning trail, hewn from the moor and woods below.
The best of your letters, from the sublime to the ridiculous.
MY BEST TRAIL
Steve Peat needs no introduction, he raced the first ever Maribor World Cup round in 1999 and that course remains to this day his favourite ever trail.
BIKES IN THIS ISSUE
Focus Jam 6.9
Haibike Allmtn 6
Kona Process 134 Supreme
Moustache Samedi 29 Game 8
Nukeproof Megawatt 297 Factory
Nukeproof Scout 290 Pro
Santa Cruz Bronson CC AXS Reserve
Specialized Status 160
Vitus Escarpe 29 CRS
Whyte E-180 RS V3
We Are One Arrival
Yeto 160E T1
YT Decoy MX Core 4