The British hill-climb season is brief and intense. It’s all over in just two months and features short, often severely steep uphill time trials lasting around 2-5 minutes, where riders push themselves to their absolute limits.
Riding uphill fast is all about minimising weight while maximising power, so hill-climb bikes are rare and specialised beasts, made for anti-gravity prowess without the slightest nod to comfort, braking or handling. If that sounds like your cup of tea, read on.
- The course(s): Steep 3-5 minute hills which make up the majority of the short/painful British hill-climb season.
- The equipment goal: Create the lightest bike possible for thrashing up double figure gradients.
- The Horse: Rose X-Lite Team 8800, with a few bits added and a few bits taken off.
The first port of call when building a lightweight hill-climb bike is the frame and fork. There are plenty of lightweight carbon frames, but we needed one able to handle the lateral forces involved when thrashing out of the saddle on a 20 percent gradient. That means supreme stiffness with generous spacing around the tyres and chainstays.
German brand Rose fitted the bill perfectly with its X-Lite Team frame and fork. We spotted it at Eurobike and immediately noticed its rear clearance and performance focused credentials. Lucky for us it also comes as a complete bike (X-Lite Team 8800) with SRAM Red (the lightest available groupset), Mavic wheels and Ritchey finishing kit.
A bike put together with one thing in mind
Weight saving doesn’t stop at the bike
Was the fettling worth it?
The best bits
You can read more at BikeRadar.com
Source: Bike Radar