I am very much new to Enduro riding and so far have only done a handful of rides on this bike. I have spent the last 15 years on bikes with a little less suspension, racing XCO and Marathon style events mainly. After years of putting the kilometres in and punching out countless hill Reps, I’m very much enjoying getting out and having fun on the ‘bouncy bike’! I guess you still have to ride up the climbs, but at least no-one is timing you and the descents are definitely more fun on this set-up!
WHERE I RIDE
I live East of Melbourne, so you will find me up in the Dandenongs a fair bit. The trails in at Silvan and Smiths Gully are some of my favorite. I have also just discovered how good the trails at Redhill are and will no doubt explore some more down this way over the coming months.
I’m a big fan of natural-style terrain. I particularly love tight, twisty trails and rock gardens. I am quite new to jumping and the faster-style downhills that are more popular these days – I will have to practice getting some air-time a little more.
I USED TO RIDE
I started my riding career onboard a Mongoose Pro, then moved on to a Kona. The following years I was lucky enough to receive sponsorships through an Italian Company Rewel, and then the Torq Team where I rode a couple of different bike brands - GT, Cube and then Merida. I also spent one Season on board a Trek, when I rode for the Target trek Team. Over this last year I have teamed up with Canyon who have just started business in Australia. It is very easy to be an ambassador for Canyon, when they offer such quality product!
I’M RIDING THE CANYON BECAUSE..
Well, I am lucky enough to be sponsored by Canyon. I can honestly say however, that even if I wasn’t sponsored by this great company my first choice would be to ride a Canyon. They are definitely the best bikes I’ve ever ridden.
WHAT I CHANGED ON THE BIKE BEFORE I RODE IT
Chopped the bars down a little – from the standard 780mm to 730mm
Dropped the front-end a touch
Swapped tyres over from Continental Trail King to Maxxis Minions (a little more aggressive and grippy)
SRAM Australia set up my suspension before I hit the trails
The geometry of the Canyon Spectral CF seems to fit me perfectly. I am running a small frame
Canyon handlebars 730mm
Canyon stem 70mm
Ergon grips. Generally I prefer the softer feel of a foam grip, but these have not given any discomfort so far.
SRAM XO Shifters
SRAM XCO Cranks 170mm
I am a huge fan of the Sram Guide Brakes. I have these same brakes on my XC bike. I have noticed far less arm pump and tired hands after swapping to these. It’s a bonus to be able to wind the brakes in when you have short stumpy fingers too!
ROCKSHOX DROPPER POST
I probably haven’t used this to its true potential yet!
I am always a little wary trying new seats. So far I have had no issues with this Ergon SME30.
This is my first bike with 27.5 inch wheels (normally on a 29er), and I do like them. These wheels seem to accelerate and corner very well. The DT Swiss Rims are certainly robust - having landed a few jumps on dodgy angles of late J
I recently put Maxxis Minions on front and rear and I’m very happy I did as they have given me a lot more confidence in cornering at speed. I’ve been running them at 17 PSI in most conditions and they seem to grip nicely on both the ups and downs. They easily inflated as tubeless and so far (touch wood) no problems with flats.
I can’t fault the RockShox Pike forks. I am running these at 55 PSI which is perfect for my weight, in both the gnarly stuff and soaking up the little bumps. Having ability to lock these out is a bonus too
I had expected the Spectral to feel heavy up the climbs after spending so much time on my Grand Canyon (8.6kg). I was surprised though at just how light this bike feels up the climbs. I guess at 12.5kg it’s really not that much heavier than my XC – the extra few kilos are great for strength training anyway:-)