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Mountain Biking UK

Mountain Biking UK August 2020

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Mountain Biking UK has got all the latest news, kit and exclusive info on the newest and best bikes. The MBUK Wrecking Crew testing team are out there right now, riding new bikes and products to destruction, to give you expert reviews you can count on to be brutally honest. We live to ride - and that's what makes MBUK Britain’s best-selling bike magazine.

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United Kingdom
Immediate Media Company London Limited
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13 Issues

in this issue

2 min.

With new bikes hitting the shops every week and more trails reopening all the time, it’s looking like being a great summer for mountain biking after all Our biketest is back! And this issue’s test is rather special. Lots of new bikes were launched while we were under lockdown, so we thought we’d dispense with our usual four-bike format and just pick six of the most promising-looking new models and give them a proper thrashing. They cover a range of riding styles, from XC whippet to bike-park bruiser, so there should be something for everyone – and if you’re wondering why there are no hardtails, it’s because we’re testing some cutting-edge ones for next issue. With new bikes hitting the shops every week (see also our launch section on p34) and…

1 min.
in dust we trust

There are few things more fun on a bike than riding fast, flowing, dusty trails with the sun on your back. Cruising along in shorts and a jersey with the sound of tyres biting into hardpack dirt is tough to beat. Truly, summer is never long enough, but thanks to the hottest spring on record, the trails are in prime condition this year. Even with the odd hammering of rain recently, they’ve been drying out in no time. When the weather’s hot and the ground is dry, the UK can offer riding to rival many more exotic locations. Even if the trails aren’t quite as long, there’s no denying how they can lift your spirits. We love summer riding, and the way a cold beer tastes so refreshing afterwards. Better…

1 min.
uplifting news

It was a long lockdown for UK trail centres and bike parks, but by the time you read this many, if not all, venues should be open again, and it won’t be long before uplift services are back up and running too. These places may not operate exactly as you remember, with strict social-distancing measures now in place, but they’ll ride just as well. In fact, many of the trails will be even better than you remember, with months of hard work having been put in while they were closed. That’s certainly the case at BikePark Wales (pictured), where they celebrated reopening with the launch of their new 5km green trail Kermit plus first runs down a new-look Insufficient Funds, facelifted Norkle and refreshed Willy Waver. We popped over to check…

2 min.
the fox hunter

Just months after Fox unveiled their stout 38 fork, RockShox have countered with the ZEB. This all-new enduro fork also has 38mm stanchions, with travel options ranging from 160mm up to a stonking 190mm. RockShox are offering it in 650b and 29in guises, with a choice of offsets for the smaller wheels (38 or 44mm) and a 44mm offset on the 29er fork. The ZEB looks like a beefed-up version of their new SID cross-country fork, with a similarly sculpted, angular brace and forged and then CNC-machined crown. RockShox claim they’ve made it 21 per cent torsionally stiffer than the 35mm-stanchion Lyrik (previously the chunkiest single-crown fork in their line-up), so steering should be impressively sharp. Fore/aft stiffness is only upped by two per cent. Despite being stiffer, RockShox assure us…

1 min.
hell yeah!

It may be called Hellsend, but we’re pretty sure it’s heaven to ride! The Hellsend Dirt Compound is a backyard riding spot like no other. Located on a farm outside Stellenbosch, South Africa, the backdrop and scenery may look familiar. That’s because it hosts a round of the insane FEST Series freeride tour. However, the absurd DarkFEST line isn’t all that it’s got to offer. The compound also boasts world-class dirt jumps, sculpted by renowned builder Justin Novella, and hosts jump jams. There are multiple rough and raw downhill tracks too, along with flow trails to suit all abilities, freeride lines with massive jumps – a stepping stone to the gnarly DarkFEST line – and pretty much everything else a mountain biker could wish for, including a new tech line designed…

1 min.
the drama line

It’s not often that a shot on Instagram stops us in our tracks, but this one did. And it turns out that it’s not just the terrain and line that are seriously dramatic. Photographer Ale Di Lullo explains… “Richie [Schley, see p59) and I had planned to go on this line, pioneered by Kenny Smith, for years. When the trip to Moab, Utah, finally happened, I thought about inviting [Brett] Tippie. Tippie came, rode the line first AND posted the shot on social media before me... This may sound worse than it actually is! It’s just a never-ending good fight between these two pioneers of the sport who are also best friends and have loved to battle and push each other since they invented freeride together 30 years ago. It’s…