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Mountain Bike Rider

Mountain Bike Rider

March 2020

Published by Time Inc. (UK) Ltd mbr is the UK's leading magazine for trail riding, mountain bike enthusiasts. Published since 1997, mbr aims to inspire readers to just get out and ride! with every issue, by providing the very best expert advice about where, what and how to ride. Every edition delivers the ultimate mix of inspirational riding features, with extensive bike and product reviews, along with superb advice and reader involvement - plus free pull-out route guides.

United Kingdom
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1 min
the call of the wild

The mornings are starting to get a little lighter and the days extending a touch further into the evening. Those few extra minutes of light every day are lifting the spirits bit by bit, and it’s time to start planning those first epic spring rides. To get you started we have five spirit-lifting ride ideas on page 22. As chosen by Sim Mainey, I can also personally vouch for several of them, most notably the Howgills ride, which is a rare breed indeed. By that I mean a properly wild mountain bike loop, with a massive climb, a feeling of being miles from anywhere and the very real chance of sinking into a bog or being blown into a ditch, but also boasting a spectacular section of completely natural singletrack.…

1 min
big picture

When winter descends on the Lakes, delights can seldom be found on the fell tops without perseverance. Hard pack deposits fill pits and fissures between the rock, opening up new opportunities. Pick the right day and the trails are faster than ever, the wrong day and you may find yourself axle deep in despair. This day mixed both extremes; highs and lows. Fortunately the day ended in euphoria as the cloud parted and gifted us the perfect golden hour. Half an hour before boarding the Caledonian Sleeper, Juliana Bicycles ambassadors Rachael Walker and Julia Hobson were riding past the Brexit protests of Westminster. Half an hour after leaving the train and they’re deep in the woods of Aviemore exploring this perfect singletrack. Given it was November, it was ambitious to join Phil…

3 min
back to the future

It’s been a decade, but Pace is back in the full-suspension mountain bike game with the RC295, a carbon-fibre 29er with 135mm travel, and an impressive £1,899 price tag for the frame and shock. A year ago we covered the prototype of the RC295, before details like the suspension partner, price or geometry were nailed down. Twelve months on, Pace has filled in the gaps and you can get your hands on a complete bike for £3,999. Suspension is nothing new to Pace, of course — 10 years ago the Yorkshire brand was cracking out a range of alloy full-suspension bikes and carbon forks, before pulling out and selling the fork design to DT Swiss, and concentrating on hardtails. The new RC295 is a jump back to the future then, with…

2 min
big on a budget

Do you have to spend a fortune if you want big travel for racing enduro or hitting bike parks? There’s a growing group of new bikes that says you don’t have to, delivering solid components, alloy frames, decent suspension, and modern standards. From Whyte’s G-170S to the new YT Capra Base, manufacturers are increasingly offering big-travel bikes at more affordable prices, trickling down the suspension and geometry know-how developed on their flagship carbon bikes, and making it available further down the ladder. And the latest contender is the Stereo 170 Race 29 from German behemoth Cube. It costs £3,000, which isn’t exactly chicken feed but we reckon it makes it one of the most affordable 170mm-travel 29ers on the market today. In fact, the only rival that can best it on price…

1 min
our pick of the winter kit

UP TOP The MT500 is astonishingly breathable, with one of the highest ratings we’ve ever seen at 60,000g/m2/24hr. Combined with good waterproofing, the result is one of the best winter jackets out there. It has pit vents, the fit is good with plenty of bum coverage, and it doesn’t weigh a ton either. £199.99, endurasport.com DOWN BELOW Fox’s Ranger 3L Water Pant doesn’t feel like a conventional waterproof as the Spandex in the weave gives it the warm, comfortable feel of a softshell. It’s still waterproof though, thanks to the three-layer construction, taped seams and DWR coating. Fit is both stylish and functional, with a nice-looking and practical tapered leg. £135, uk.foxracing.com THE HANDS The Brisker Glove from 100% is well insulated on the back of the hand and has neoprene cuffs. Like a wetsuit, they don’t…

4 min
hot stuff

MOST WANTED MARZOCCHI Z1 COIL FORK £779 Two years ago, Marzocchi launched its comeback with the Z1 — a fork that relied heavily on Fox technology and that proved solid and dependable, if uninspiring. This year there’s a new coil-sprung version of the Z1, something we reckon is a smart move from Marzocchi and could expand its fan base. The Z1 appeals to riders who want a fit-and-forget fork, something dependable enough to ride at bike parks, the local woods and maybe a week in the Alps. Throwing a coil into the mix makes a whole lot of sense then, adding weight but crucially comfort too when you’re lapping the bike park. It uses the GRIP damper, with a sweeping gold dial to adjust both the high-speed and low-speed compression damping. Marzocchi has made…