Shimano’s latest press release reminds us that, as much as we would all like to own a ten thousand dollar trail bike, many avid riders, and some first-time mountain bikers will be hitting the trails this season aboard far more modest steeds. The new M6000-level Deore component ensemble is targeted at the entry-level enthusiasts and cash strapped shredders who would much prefer XTR, but have not yet purchased a winning lottery ticket.
Clutch-type rear derailleur in long and mid-cage options.
Highlights of the new group are a clutch type Shadow plus rear derailleur, a four-arm XTR style crank spider, Centerlock brake rotors and hubs, and while the Servo-Wave brake levers and ICE-compatible calipers are modeled very close to the ergonomically pleasant XT and XTR stoppers, you’ll have to pony up for the finned brake pads, because they are not standard fare.
Mid-length levers and servo-wave actuation.
The 6000 calipers accept XTR finned brake pads.
Choose a two or three-ring crankset with XTR styling.
Equally newsworthy was what was not included in the press release: No eleven speed for M6000, so it won’t be cross-compatible with its pricier siblings. The basic Deore will remain a ten-speed transmission, and there is no mention of a one-by (single chainring) option. Instead, M6000 customers can choose from a number of two and three-chainring cranksets (no surprise there) paired with a new wide-range 11 by 42-tooth cassette, or Shimano’s longstanding 11 by 32, 34, or 36-tooth cassettes. To assist OEM customers, Shimano will offer front changers with every possible cable and clamping arrangement.
Side-swing front mech for the entry level Deore group.
SLX One-By and a Wide-Range Cassette
On the heels of the M6000 Deore ensemble, came the announcement that an SLX-level one-by drivetrain has finally been approved for production, and with an eleven–speed, 11 x 46-tooth, wide-range cassette – both of which will be released this Spring. The affordable one-by transmission, big-boy cassette and the concurrent release of XT-level wheelsets with Boost axle spacing reflect a large-scale adjustment in the Japanese parts maker’s range, presumably, to pull alongside SRAM in the OEM market and to ensure that those customers have the proper tools to outfit mid-priced performance mountain bikes with tip-to-toe Shimano componentry.
Entry Level Trail Pedal
Shimano also added an SPD Trail pedal to its range that is reportedly priced to match the M6000 ensemble. The PDED500 pedal once again, puts one of Shimano’s most-wanted products into the hands of entry-level riders. Expect to see the 500-level pedals on demo fleets world wide. No price was available at the time of the press release.
Wheels have gradually become a staple product for Shimano and, while wide rims are still on the horizon, to keep in step, their wheel range is now available in Boost-width as well as standard-width axles. Two new 29” and 27.5” Deore XT wheelsets have wider axle options – a 110x15mm e-thru front- and a 148x12mm rear-axle spacing. Shimano says that the new wheelsets increase stiffness. Also new are rear thru axle hubs (AX-MT700 and AX-MT500) with smaller housings and lighter weights that feature greater clearance for frames and brake calipers.
April 28th and 29th will see the ice rink of Thun, Switzerland, transformed into a bike paradise for the 8th annual Swatch Rocket Air event. The elite slopestyle event will take a journey back through time to meet Marty McFly, mullet haircuts and new way tunes all to fit with the theme for 2017; “Back to the 80s.” The Swiss event will hold an FMB World Tour Gold status for the second year in a row.
For those who have asked why the Flying Metal Crew changes the event theme each year, Event Director, Jerome Hunziker, has a simple answer: “We don’t want anyone to get bored!“ As a result, the end of April won’t be a dull moment in Thun. The Flying Metal Crew will work once again to bring their theme to life. While they may not be able to recreate a time machine like in the classic 80s movies “Back to the Future,” they will turn the ice rink into the next best thing: the ultimate 80s dance party! Come relive this iconic time, with its colorful fashion, design, and music, as riders take flight next to a human-sized disco ball and drop off a 10-meter-high ghetto blaster.
As an FMB Gold event, it is next to obligatory that the highest ranked slopestyle athletes will attend. Nicholi Rogatkin, 2015 Swatch Rocket Air winner and FMB Diamond Series leader, has already announced he will return to defend his title. Will he earn himself the win with his unique “Twister” trick or does the wild American have a new trick up his sleeve for the judges? Either way, we can expect the audience to be on their feet grooving for the riders!
The Swatch Rocket Air has also evolved into much more than just a single slopestyle show. There will be many activities taking place throughout the weekend including the Pumptrack World Battle. With the help of the online ranking system, riders can test their skills against each other on the Modular Pumptrack. For the generation of future riders there will be a “Like-a-Bike” race where children aged 2–5 can make their rounds. Finally, the 5x Flatland World Champion, Vicki Gomez, will entertain us all with a spectacular BMX Flatland Show.
The 2016 event was sold-out, so spectators will want to buy their tickets early. Pre-sale tickets can be purchased online at www.rocketair.ch/tickets.
Stay tuned for the lasts news by following @swatchrocketair and @flyingmetalcrew on social media. Followers will be given an insider look as the Flying Metal Crew brings to life their “Back to the 80s“ theme and Course Builder, Ramon Hunziker, shares details about the course design and we find out who will arrive in Thun to fight for the crown!
We are proud to announce that one of the most inspiring mountain bike racers on the planet will be with us for another two years! There aren’t many Supernatural Racers out there who can deliver top results across the most diverse Mountainbike disciplines. With his rare combination of skill and total dedication, Tomas embodies Thirty7even’s message…a true Supernatural Racer.
“I have been with Thirty7even basically from the beginning of the brand so it`s a pleasure for me to say that we signed the contract for another two years. 2016 was an absolutely amazing season for me and it will be hard to beat, but I`m motivated and ready to give it all I`ve got. In 2017 I will be racing the 4X Pro Tour, Crankworx, City DH World Tour, Downmall Tour series and many other races all over the world. The biggest goals in 2017 are definitely King of Crankworx and the World Champion title in fourcross. The upcoming year will be long and busy, but I’m stoked to be on board with Thirty7even.” – Tomas Slavik
“It’s important for me to work with a team that is receptive to feedback and where I have some influence over the products. The T7N Team is always open-minded and focused on improving their stuff, and that’s why I enjoy working with them so much. I hope to represent the T7N Team with some good results, great photos and videos throughout the year, and I’m stoked to hit the races circuit wearing T7N stuff again.“ – Manuel Gruber
For 2017 Manuel will focus on the iXS EDC and is looking forward to some podiums and the overall. Tomas’ biggest goals are definitely King of Crankworx and World Champion title in fourcross.
Whistler-based, Rémy Métailler, is one of the last riders to announce their sponsors for 2017, but here it is. For the next two years, Rémy will be setting the internet ablaze with videos like his Whistler Bike Park clips, aboard a Cube. Speaking with Rémy of the new partnership, he’s quick to point out how much he has been enjoying working with Cube as he prepares for 2017, adding that the communication he has with the brand has been great.
The 26-year-old freerider is one of the more innovative park riders today and his riding puts a lot of stress on equipment, not to mention the number of laps of the Whistler Bike Park that he does. Rémy will spend most of his time aboard the Cube Two15 downhill bike and will ride the brands Stereo 160 outside the park.
Rémy’s 2016 season came to an abrupt finish when he misjudged a jump at the Taxco Downhill event in Mexico, breaking his back in the process. There were rumours circulating that he would be off the bike for the majority of 2017, but when asked Rémy said he feels stronger than ever and has been spending a lot of time skiing recently too – an activity that he has been enjoying with little in the way of issues as a result of the back injury. He’s ready to get back on his bike and has been training to make sure that he is not only ready, but better than before.
Cube will be Rémy’s frame supplier through 2018, with more news on his partnerships to come in the near future. For more check Cube’s full press release below.
Métailler signs two-year deal with CUBE
26-year-old French freerider Rémy Métailler moves to leading German bike manufacturer CUBE with immediate effect. Rémy lives in Whistler, BC, Canada.
CUBE announces its partnership with one of the freeride scene’s best-known and most innovative riders ahead of the 2017 season. Both sides are delighted about the new collaboration. CUBE is particularly proud that one of the world’s best freeriders has chosen the German bike manufacturer as his partner. “The deal with Rémy means we have an absolute world-class rider on our books. We are extremely proud to welcome Rémy Métailler to the CUBE fold. Despite only being 26 years of age, Rémy is already a big name on the freeride scene and brings a wealth of experience on board with him. We look forward to working together and are planning some intriguing projects involving Rémy,” says Marko Haas, CUBE Marketing. “CUBE’s focus is not solely on lab results. We also work particularly closely with athletes and obtain feedback direct from riders. This data goes straight into our development processes to ensure we get the best performance from every single bike.” Rémy is excited about the partnership with CUBE: “The brand and I share the same interests and my move from Commencal to CUBE went really well. I am very optimistic about the future and moving to one of the bike industry’s leading companies is added motivation for me.”
Rémy believes that the best equipment produces the best performances. That’s why one of his bikes of choice is the CUBE Two15 downhiller. With its perfect combination of agility and smooth ride, the Two15 makes child’s play out of going super fast on everything from World Cup tracks to local downhill trails and freeride tracks. Rémy made the conscious decision to move to CUBE and is already looking forward to working together: “I feel a connection to the brand through my European roots. CUBE is a household name to me and the new Two15 is an awesome bike that has already shown its potential at the Downhill World Cup. The geometry matches my riding style perfectly. Having CUBE as my bike sponsor for 2017 will help me take my riding skills and my bike knowledge to the next level. I’m really excited about taking this next step.”
Rémy is known among other things for the videos he shoots in his adopted home of Whistler. “Burns the Whistler Bike Park” takes bike park riding to the next level and is one of the scene’s most-watched edits. Rémy once again proved he is a world-class talent with a 12th place at the 2016 Red Bull Rampage. He was the only rider to use clipless pedals and his fast run impressed the judges. Rémy has already set his personal targets for the next two years: “Over the next couple of years I plan to keep doing exactly what I have been doing for the last four years – producing web edits and content on the thing I love the most: mountain biking. I will also be involved in developing and testing new products. I am confident that CUBE and I will come up with some fantastic stuff together and I am excited to be riding CUBE bikes in the future.”
Rémy is currently working on his comeback after a crash at the Taxco City Downhill in Mexico, which left him with a broken T6 vertebra. He is making excellent progress with his recovery thanks to intensive training in the gym and close work with his physiologist. So well, in fact, that Rémy feels stronger than ever.
Four years as an Enduro World Series team and chasing its fourth consecutive world champion title, Yeti Fox Factory Team continues to defy odds and expectations. Led by two-time EWS Champion, Richie Rude the 22-year-old junior downhill racer turned Enduro phenom, will enter the 2017 season pursuing his third consecutive Enduro World Championship title. Rude will be joined by Cody Kelley who will be entering his second year on the team. Both riders will focus on the EWS international race circuit.
The national team roster adds in a handful of new-comers including Jubal Davis, Shawn Neer and women’s pro-rider, Anne Galyean. Race veteran and Yeti employee, Chris Heath will also return to the team. The U21 team line up adds in a strong contingent from California – Duncan Nason and Paul Serra. Racers on the national team will focus mostly on regional races in the Rocky Mountains as well as a few of stops on the EWS circuit.
“Racing is integral to our brand and the cornerstone of our product development,” said Chris Conroy, Yeti Cycles president and co-owner. “We’ve been fortunate to have some of the best racers in the world on our program over the years and have high expectations for this year’s team.”
The Yeti Fox Factory Team continues to thrive with the support of many dedicated and generous sponsors that offer high-performance products and services able to endure the most grueling race tracks in the world. Returning sponsors for 2017 include: Fox, Maxxis, Shimano, DT Swiss, Ergon, Giro, OneUp Components, Ion, Stages Cycling, Chris King, Feedback Sports, Honey Stinger and Victory Circle Graphix. New sponsors for 2017, will include Toyota, Motorex, Backcountry Research, Unior, Rocky Mounts and Enduro MTB Training.
“Our sponsors are instrumental to making this team tick,” said Damion Smith, Yeti Cycles team manager. “Each company we partner with serves a crucial role. As we chase our fourth consecutive Enduro World Championship title, we know they will continue to be as important as ever.”
Yeti Fox Factory Team will kick off the season on the EWS circuit at the first stop in Rotorua, New Zealand at the end of March.