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Issue 15 | May, June 2013 | Free Download www.freeridermag.in


EXCLUSIVE STORY Fools of April | 5 EXPOSED & FRAMED Ga毛tan Rey | 12 HOT EVENT 3rd Nepal National DH Championship | 16 RIDER PROFILE Shajjan Rajbanshi | 26 20 inch Car Free Day | 29 FRESH JUICE iXs riding gear + more | 34 WHATS UP MTB Shimla + more | 39

COVER | PHOTO: Martyna Oz贸g | RIDER: Pawel Bogusz | LOCATION: Stargard Szczecinski NOTE: We have done our best to make sure that all content in this issue of Freerider mountain bike magazine is accurate, but would emphasise that we at Freerider mountian bike magazine accept no responsibility for any errors in the magazine/content or any errors caused to your computer while reading our magazine.


The 2013 summers have been intense. ‘Glove tan patches’ have become a new style quotient for the season! While the trail temperatures are rising, we at Freeridermag have some chilled images and hot stories for you to get fired up for the month! Our cover image is all the way from Poland. Theirs is a gang of riders like ours, facing opposition from city councils and struggling to break out of the mainstream sports shadow. As these riders have all their jumps, drops, and other trails built in hidden army hills it reminds me a lot of the situation here in our part of the globe! Isn’t it all about just riding a bicycle? In this edition, along with hot stories from Pune, we have Nepal’s biggest DH star Shajjan Rajbanshi speaking about his ride life in the fast lane. We also have the IXS gear in our torture test zone. Hope you enjoy the words and images in our 15th Issue (MayJune) and get stoked to hit the trails.. Remember to keep your hydration packs full; we still have another month of heat wave coming our way!

Vinay Menon

Deputy Editor Freerider Mountain Bike Magazine vinay@freeridermag.in Photo: Vineet Sharma Rider: Kabir Dhillon Location: Leisure Valley, Chandigarh - INDIA

The Team: Editor in Chief: Vineet Sharma vineet@freeridermag.in Deputy Editor: Vinay Menon vinay@freeridermag.in Contributing Editor: Vaibhav Nijhowne vaibhav@freeridermag.in BMX Agent: Dipak Panchal Trail Correspondent (U.S.A): Kevin Pabinquit

Contributing Editors and Photographers Cephas Joseph, Ajay Padval, Andreas Schaad, Sharad Chandra, Jatin Lodaya, El Yak, Sarah Appelt, Ashish Sood, Samir Azad, Gaëtan Rey, Shajjan Rajbanshi and Martyna Ozóg. Freerider Mountain Bike Magazine #410, Sector: 10 Panchkula (Haryana). 134109 - INDIA. ........................................................ This magazine is intended for free distribution and is only available through our web portal. E-mail us for more details. www.freeridermag.in ........................................................ Feel free to write or contribute. E-mail at: vineet@freeridermag.in | vinay@freeridermag.in


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Words: Vinay Menon | Photography: Cephas Joseph and Vinay Menon

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ing in Pune k o o c ts e g e c a rn The summer fu

Sunshine hours have been ruling the month of April, bringing along melting temperatures. While Pune city was baking in the noon sun, few mountain bikers were popping out of their bunkers to throw their mountain bikes around the hot trails.

These chained soldiers included; Piyush Chavan, Ajay Padval, Cephas Joseph and myself. As rest of the crew in action here is still in college, dodging between the classroom hours was a norm. So plans were made, timings were decided and the shred month began.

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Not being a fool of the month, each one of us ‘Puneykarees’ hopped on the bike to have a blazing time. Early start with breakfast stuck in our teeth we landed on the Indian Army powered hills every morning. An ammunition testing range, the ‘Dighi Hills’ of Pune is not a place you take lightly. As war tanks are firing, new army recruits training, low intensity explosives going, the trails on these hills exist to challenge you from all sides. With steep and twisty descents to big air cliff drops, the ‘Dighi hills’ have been a training zone for India’s top mountain bikers. Freerider Mountain Bike Magazine |6


As we collected our fun time tickets each morning we wanted to brush up a little on our airborne style. The ‘Bowl’ as we call it, is a little natural setup we’ve been riding for years to dial in some style into our jumps.

As the month progressed, Piyush Chavan kept getting whackier on his bike. Nailing his first 360 on the big bike to ripping steeps on every ride! Not to be left behind, the hardtail recruits kept the bowl sessions twisted. Cephas and Ajay don’t dance with a cushion on their frame and opted to make the most of the ‘Bowl’ and ‘BB zone Drop’ hours on their hardtails. Freerider Mountain Bike Magazine | 7


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At the same time, a big bike 360 off a drop has been on my mind for a while now and decided to throw myself at it. With couple of under rotated spins resulting in a bruised back, knee and wrist; I opted to take it easy. For another day we’ll see how the 3s go off a drop.

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As summer’s final month, May has stepped in; we in Pune are getting geared up to make the most of the overhead sun and dry weather. Some Big Air and ridiculous lines are in the works before we welcome the monsoons!


Gaëtan Rey Gaëtan Rey is an extremely creative photographer from France who also graced the cover of our last issue with his photograph. We caught up with him and asked few questions about him and his work.

FR MTB MAG: Tell us a little bit about yourself.

Rey : My name is Gaëtan Rey. I’m 28 years old. I live in France in a small town near Leman Lake and Swiss border called Orcier. I worked as a crane operator until this year but this summer things are going to change because I’ll work as a bikepatrol in Châtel Bikepark. I ride bikes since I’m a child and really love everything in contact with this world.

FR MTB MAG: For how long have you been shooting photos?

Rey: Photos are not the biggest part of my work. I consider myself much more like a filmmaker than a photographer. Most of the time, I take photos to have something to add with a video article. Photos are like an extra. As I start filming (seriously) last year and I can say that first good photos came at the same time.


FR MTB MAG: : Your mountain biking photography portfolio is epic. Do you shoot anything else besides mountain biking? Rey : For sure most of my work refers to mountain biking. I also try to shoot some landscapes, people or animals. I spent few weeks in Argentine with my wife last year and I took a lot of photos whereas there was no MTB at all.

FR MTB MAG: What does your camera bag consist of on photoshoots?

Rey: My camera bag is filled with video material more than photo material. I’ve got a Panasonic GH3 with 12-35mm, 35-100mm and 25mm lenses. Beside this one I kept my Sony Nex-5 with a 30mm macro lens and a 18-55mm. The bag is completed with a rig, a follow focus, a shoulder mount, my tripod, a steady cam and a micro. As i said, it’s more for video shooting. Maybe you noticed that I don’t even have a flash yet...

FR MTB MAG: : Tell us about Shaperideshoot.

Rey : Shaperideshoot is a kind of community I create with 4 friends to share the fun we have on bikes with other users. And the best way we found is broadcasting web edits and photos on our website (www.shaperideshoot.com) and on social network. The name came from our way of life shared between shaping new trails, riding them as hard as possible and shooting with friends. We launched it last summer and we try to go forward with no precision, only doing what we love the best.

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FR MTB MAG: Do you ride mountain bikes besides shooting?

Rey : Yes, riding is the most important thing for me in my MTB life. I love shaping and shooting but riding with my friends is the most important.

FR MTB MAG: Any project lined up for this season? Can you tell us about it in details?

Rey: Nothing really special. The biggest change is my new work in a Bikepark and it takes all my attention at this moment. Maybe I will be able to create new lines in purpose to shoot some new videos in the park, and maybe I will bring new guests on these lines. We are working also on a new dirt trail because i really want to shoot some dirt jumping stuff. When I am thinking about my summer I realize that I will work a lot with the shovel.

FR MTB MAG: : If you could shoot anywhere with anyone, who and where would it be?

Rey : I really want to make some shots with Brendan Fairclough on one of our tracks. It’s a track with big jumps and a freeride spirit. I love so much the way that Brendan rides his bike . Being able to see him for real on your own track, hitting your jumps in front of my camera could be the best day in my life.

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FR MTB MAG: : Have you got chance to explore the mountain biking scene in India? Do you plan to visit here for any photography project?

Rey : No, not yet but I’m so stoked each time I see photos from riders in India. It looks like you guys have great natural terrain with beautiful landscapes. India is very far from Europe and I’m really bad to plan trips but I don’t want to say no. Maybe if you want to be the guide I will come with my friends! Maybe one day. I dream about a life of trips and travels with my MTB and my camera but by now it’s only a dream.

FR MTB MAG: : Anything else we should know about you?

Rey : Nothing special to ad about me. I just want to thank my wife who bears me all the time, my partners who help me to go forward and my friends for the good moments!

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L l i h n 3 ional Dow ain Biking Nat Mount Championship rd

NEPAL

Words and images by El Yak Mountain Biking (www.elyak.com)

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the race The 3rd National Downhill Championship took plac e on March 30, 2013, at the serene hilltop of Hattiban – some 22 kms from Kathmandu. In the recent years, especially, there has been a growing crowd dedicated to this relatively new sport in Nepal. This brings no surprise that Hattiban was abuzz with 24 participants and hundreds of spe ctators, thanks to a race well organized by Lalitpur District Cycling Association and Nepal Cycle Association (NCA). Nirakar Yaktumba, the director of the race who also won a top position in last year’s championship, says that there was more international and national participation, with ride rs flying in from as far as Czech Republic, Bhutan, China and India for the race. The race policies and guidelines were set forth by NCA, which also approved the tracks and sanctioned the race to adhere to international race standards. Two commissars were appointed by NCA - Akshay Dulal at the starting, and Ajay Narsinga Rana at the finishing line.


Downhill Sport Background

Downhill biking started drawing attention in Nepal since 2007. Both national as well as international riders have made much effort to promote Nepal as a downhill biking destination. Yakthumba reiterates that Nepal’s terrain – from flats to rugged mountains – makes for terrific biking trails for crosscountry, all-mountain as well as downhill biking. Slowly but steadily, Nepal is gaining its due reputation as a quintessential biking hub. Though families here are normally not very open to this sport because of the imminent and obvious risks associated with it, the number of downhill riders is increasing every year – there were almost 10 more riders this year as compared to last year’s championship race. Furthermore, crosscountry cyclists are also showing interest in downhill riders; four crosscountry riders partook in the 3rd Downhill Championship race, all securing respectable positions of top 15. It is also encouraging that about 80% of the racers were Nepali – with a rider as young as 13 – and this sport culture is on the rise. Besides the championship, two to three other downhill races are organized.

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Ajay Rana, the Chief National Commissar and national coach, maintains, “Downhill biking is a progressing sport and participants have to really push themselves. The thrill and adventure from the sport is definitely what entices aficionados, both as a recreation and professional sports.” Likewise, the Downhill National Champion, Shajjan Rajbanshi, says he loves to be out in the nature, which is why he chose downhill biking. Shyam and Shakar, too, say they love outdoors and that their family is extremely supportive of their love for biking. It took them a few years of dedicated practice to reach their skill level, and they say anyone with the passion for adventure can excel in this sport. According to Shyam Limbu, “Though downhill riding may seem dangerous to many, with proper training and protective riding gears the sport is as safe as any other. Moreover, downhill biking helps to keep my mind and body fresh, and it heightens my reflexes.”

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the TRACK

Created and maintained by the joint effort of Epic Mountain Biking and Chain Bicycles, the natural 2-km downhill track features some thrilling jump and technical sections. The stating point of the race was Taukokhane Daanda and the finishing point was just below Hattiban resort. As compared to last year, the track is almost half a kilometer longer in length at the finishing end. Also, the organizers added a multitude of jump sections and tight turns, which made the track more technical than last year’s. Nonetheless, safety was kept at the forefront of the race – the track was very visible with parallel strips of orange tape and prayer flags on either side, while hazards were clearly marked with bright green paint. Freerider Mountain Bike Magazine | 20


Indeed, with the support from the local community, which has expressed its eagerness in supporting downhill and cross country biking, Hattiban is coming to shape as Nepal’s first biking park. What used to be a popular hiking destination is now an abode of cycling enthusiasts. Onbrej Barta (1st position) mentioned that the track at Hattiban could be more thrilling with a few more drops and technical sections. Shyam Limbu and Shakar Yakthumba agree with Onbrej and also add that there definitely has been a lot of improvement in Hattiban’s downhill track over the years. (Two other tracks that are suitable for a national-level race are the Shivapuri National Park downhill track and Pokhara’s downhill track. However, the former has high national park entry charges imposed by the government and the latter is too far afield, posing coordination challenges.)

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e Onbrej was il h w n a jj a h S to rded ionship was awa p m a ch e th , ce al ra this was a nation se u ca e b Asian Mountain , e ce th ra is e s th ce n ra o w ch j t su . lly Onbre races. Among firs got this privilege l ) a rs n o Though technica ce ti . a ra n o y rn ti tr te si n in o u p o in oss-c Nepal for this first ge and acquire with four top cr d g of representing le n e w lo g o (a le duly recognized kn vi rs r ri e e p d p e ri e l e th il get d wnh is race have palese riders to ay. Top three do e M N r in fo a s in The winners of th h w C o ll a in s race ship being held in international te a p ci rti a Biking Champion p to e. that opportunity riders back hom ders. g ri Yakthumba says in ss ir la sp -c a d g rl n o o w m ga ills from of downhill bikin rd a d more technical sk n a st ll ra ve motes the o This instead pro

RESULT

The result of the 3rd Downhill Championship were: 1st Onbrej Barta

3:14:41

Czech

2nd Shajjan Rajbanshi

3:17:06

Nepali

3rd Shyam Limbu

3:30:59

Nepali

4th Shakar Yakthumba

3:30:73

Nepali

5th Parmeshwor Pokharel 3:32:48

Nepali Indian

6th Gautam Taode

3:36:16


Shajjan Rajbhanshi is in his 30s and owns pharmaceutical outlets in the USA. He has extensive experience racing in amateur downhill mountain biking races in US as well as in Nepal.

Shyam Limbu, 28, is a freelance mountain biking guide. He has been professionally involved in downhill biking for the past 3 years.

Shakar Yakthumba, 19, is a recent high school graduate who started downhill biking with the guidance and encouragement of his uncle and the race director, Nirakar Yakthumba.

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RACE FUTUR

E

Small but slowly increasing number of enthusiasts notwithstanding, downhill biking has gained much attention from the government as well. The national recognition that the winners of the 3rd Downhill Biking Championship received stands testament. Officials are planning to have the race between January and March every year so that the winners will have ample time to train for international races through the year. Freerider Mountain Bike Magazine | 24


FR MTB MAG: Age and hometown: SHAJJAN: I’m 36 years from kathmandu, Nepal. FR MTB MAG: Years riding mountain bikes, especially downhill? SHAJJAN: I started in 2006. FR MTB MAG: Current DH bike setup? SHAJJAN: Intense M6 FR MTB MAG: Your Podium appearances over the years (Nepal and International)? SHAJJAN: 2008 Asian Mountain Bike Championship 7th, First National Downhill Mountain Bike Series 1st. Second National Downhill Championship Series 1st, Himalayan Festival Downhill Championship 1st, 2013 National Downhill Championship 1st.

SHAJJAN RAJBANSHI

FR MTB MAG: You are the most influential and winningest downhill rider of Nepal, how does it feel to see the latest crop of Nepalese riders appreciating your hard work and considering you as their idol? SHAJJAN: It is amazing to see the rise of downhill riders over the 5 year period. It feels good to see younger rider to appreciate my hard work and consider me as their idol. FR MTB MAG: You’ve been a pioneer of the DH racing scene in Nepal, how was the journey? Did you have to struggle your way through availability of bikes, riding partners, etc? SHAJJAN: I was the first person to introduce downhill bike in Nepal,(Kona Stab primo) the journey was tough and fun… it was not easy to bring the bike to Nepal because of the cost. Every time I came to Nepal I brought 2 to 3 bikes so I could increase the number of downhill bike in Nepal. At the beginning there weren’t much rider to ride with but as the year passed by the rider increased in numbers.

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FR MTB MAG: You moved to the USA almost a decade ago connected to your work, how has that helped you in progressing as an athlete and a Downhill racer in particular? SHAJJAN: Moving in USA was a great idea. When I was in the USA I had an opportunity to train with better athletes and ride in many advance courses which increased my learning curve in my downhill riding. Overall it made me a better rider. FR MTB MAG: Having won Nepal’s ‘National DH Champion’ title several times over the years, you certainly know what it takes to win. Any special training regime you like to follow? SHAJJAN: I don’t only do downhill riding. I do cross training.. To improve my downhill performance I do rollers, XC riding, laps on the pump track. I also like to rest and eat well.

FR MTB MAG: What other sports keep you busy when you are not ripping trails on MTB? SHAJJAN: Running and swimming. FR MTB MAG: What is your take on Nepal’s mountain biking future, especially DH? SHAJJAN: In the past five years it has the number of riders and popularity has grown rapidly. Nepal is rich in mountain and you can find all sort of downhill trails. The location is better than any other mountain bike park… if the officials and the local gave more priority to downhill sport it will be one of the biggest sport in Nepal. It can attract many foreign riders and help in the country’s economy.


FR MTB MAG: Which is your most memorable decent that gives you a boost just thinking of? Are there some dream trails that you wish to shred that you haven’t ridden yet? SHAJJAN: So far I love the trails in Santa Barbara. Tunnel trail, Cold Spring trail and San Ysidro trail. FR MTB MAG: What is your average day like? Does work take up a major chunk of your sunlight hours? SHAJJAN: My average day; During vacation I am riding all the time‌ when I am not on vacations, more work less fun.

FR MTB MAG: Any shout outs to key sponsors, individuals who supported you through your mountain bike journey so far? SHAJJAN: I really would love to thank my mom dad and my brothers who were always inspiring. I also would like to thank my wife and child who are always at the race site cheering me. I would also like to thank all the members of mountain bike community who worked hard to make this sport popular in Nepal.

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Y A D E E R F CAR BAND

Words: Dipak Panchal | Photography: Sharad Chandra

RA - M UMBA I

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Bandra carter road, is the place to be, one of the most happening places in Mumbai, It is about a 5km well paved stretch. Now minus the cars and autos and other means of vehicular transport from this equation for one whole day, that just gives us bmx’ers and skaters one thought. LETS FRIKKIN RIDE!!

The event was organised by KBS foundation (khar-bandrasantacruz) and always have had bmx and skateboarding as a part of their street events since the first CFD took place back in 2010. We teamed up with BCC (Bandra cycle club) which is the most active cycling club in Bandra and have always supported the bmx scene. Freerider Mountain Bike Magazine | 30


So this year the boys from Sharptune were all set and ready to rock the crowds, all 15 of us. The ball was set rolling at 11am where we started the first demo. As soon as we started a warm-up we had a crowd immediately surrounding us with awe, and we just jammed one after another. The idea was to do 4 demo’s at specified time slots, but if you see a flat spot with no cars and no one to stop you from riding n showing off your skills, trust me you not gonna stop riding . thats what carter road witnessed, we ourselves were so pumped to see each other ride and show off the level of progression, it was such a good vibe that it was motivating us to ride all day and just have fun on the bikes. There were so many youngsters with their bmx bike all stoked to try out some basics, we had a few quick training sessions for the kids who wanted to try bmx and skateboarding , also their parents were happy seeing their kids ride and try out tricks under proper supervision.

The highlights of the events were undoubtly the street riders Hasu,Papias,Sahil and, they have a fan following of their own. Where as the flatlanders and skaters successfully kept the crowds jaw dropped with amazement through out the day. Hassu injured his ankle at the ramp practice and papias had a hairline but none the less they were at their 100%. Bharat and James were the crowd favorite as always. Rony,Rajas,Shailesh, Yusuf,Shahbaaz were on fire, as they kept pushing themselves one after another. I saw so much of progression and so many new tricks, had so many jawdropping moments myself, one of those moments where I felt so proud to be a part of this amazing sport. As soon as it were getting darker the energy went down a bit, but the crowd asked for more, we relaxed for a bit and started riding . Slowly the whole session turned into a mosh-pit, shailesh started dancing and all of sudden all of us are dancing in between, then the crowd joined in making in one crazy road party.


it was such a great feeling that we got riding again and rode way past out scheduled demo time till the end of the event. Eventually the cops came in and spoiled all the fun and told us to stop as the event is over and they were gonna let the cars access carter road. But all of us were happy, just as a fact that all of us rode together and were part of the most craziest bmx/skate jams the city of Mumbai can ever witness. Hoping events like this to happen once every month.

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Would like to thank the sharptune team for all the support for making this such a crazy memory Papias Dsouza, Rajas Naik, Shailesh Sawant, Hasmukh Parmar, Yusuf Shaikh, Satish Devde,Sayed Azharhusain, Pankaj Sumra, Shahbaaz Khan, Sahil Kotwani, Sharan Jumani, Shajad Khan, Bharat Manjrekar , Rony Lee, Jamie Fernandes. Vishal Sharma (Bandra Cycle Club) Mahesh Ajinkya (Bandra Cycle Club)

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5/5 leaves rating!

This month we disclose the performance delivered by the 2013 iXs Chavar DH jersey with Senda DH pants that are designed for gravity riders looking for some real tough riding gear and comfort at the same time. We have been testing this kit since the snowy month of Jan till the melt down. Thanks to the highly breathable and humidity transporting system, the Chavar DH jersey and Senda DH pants worked flawlessly even with multiple layers on during long riding and pushing sections. We became fan of its bold graphics and color scheme that makes it a perfect eye catching riding kit. The Chavar DH jersey and Senda DH pants are designed smartly. They fit perfect and are baggy enough that your knee/shin pads and elbow pads don’t feel awkward beneath them.

Chavar DH jersey

iXs Chavar DH jersey is made with 96% Polyester, 3% Nylon, 1% Spandex. This super comfortable and light weight but strongly constructed jersey features a neck brace collar with goodies like integrated lens wipe, mesh inserts and multi security stitched seams for strength. The jersey is very comfortable during longer ride days too. The highly breathable and antibacterial material of this jersey is perfect to be worn all day. The back of the jersey is slightly lower than the front and it helps prevent it from riding up and blocking the unwanted view.

Review & Riding: Vineet Sharma Photography: Sarah Appelt

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Senda DH pants This tough looking DH pant means business. Comfortable and durable quality is not easily available when talking about gravity specific riding gear. Senda DH pants features multi security stich seams, feels like tank solid – yet fits well and pedals without hindering your performance. Featuring 98% Polyester, 1% Cotton, 1% Nylon the pants don’t give that rough feeling at all, especially to those sensitive parts of a man (while riding or while pushing the bike). To make life better, these pants come with 2 open pockets which are good enough to carry your cell phone or Mp3 player and some energy bars. You can access the pockets easily without removing the gloves. At the waist, band fasteners, velcro and snap closure fine tunes the fitting to your satisfaction level. Mesh lining and stretch inserts with breathable and humidity transporting system completes our 110% satisfying experience with iXs Chavar DH jersey and Senda DH pants.

We conclude that iXs Senda DH pant and Chavar DH jersey are great for gravity riders seeking a high quality riding gear without compromising on comfort at the same time. To make it better, the kit is available in green, red and blue. However Chavar DH jersey is available in red and blue color options. iXs riding gear has proven to be top notch in every condition and they know how to keep riders happy and comfortable with their innovative technology. iXs Chavar DH jersery is priced at €59.95 and Senda DH pants at € 99.95. Available for purchase at http://www.ixs-sportsdivision.com/


Oakley - Ten sunglasses

Oakley Ten is the classic Oakley look, amped with volume and rigged with tech. You’ll have sculpturally integrated hinges with dual cam action, a comfortable Three-Point Fit, and the optical performance you need for a life with momentum. Oakley Ten uses XYZ Optics® (a benefit of High Definition Optics® (HDO®)) to keep your vision razor sharp at every angle of view, even with 8.75 base lens curvature. That’s what Ten offers, and it means you’ll have a wide peripheral view with extra coverage to block annoying things like side glare, wind, and the type of impact that can ruin your outlook. Even with all that curvature, you’ll have optical precision that meets ANSI Z87.1 standards, and same goes for impact protection because the comfortably lightweight O Matter® frame is beyond durable.

Oakley Ten feels comfortable and effective while riding without compromising your vision (Thanks to the HD polarized wide lens design). The frame design and construction is very durable and lightweight at the same time. Oakley Ten has been there for a while and they know how to make you look bad ass. Oakley Ten sunglasses are available in India at various stores and cost INR 4900.

SRAM PC-951 | 9 speed chain

Sram - probably the most preferred brand in mountain bike industry offers a very economical 9 speed chain, PC-951. The chain is light on pocket and features chrome-hardened rivet pins and a Powerlink closure for an easy assembly. We have been rolling on this chain for more than a year till we destroyed two sets. The first 3 months were without any issues with smooth shifting and rolling. After a long use on various kind of terrains, weather conditions etc we realized that this chain is good for weekend riders who don’t want to spend much. However, if you’re a serious or a competitive rider we would recommend higher chain models by Sram. The PC 951 may not last for a long time and may let you down without warning when you’re pushing the limits as it did for us. We had to complete the ride after removing three links (thanks to Vaibhav’s chain tool which he was carrying) and rolled for another 2 months till it completely gave up. We would give this chain 2 leaves only for being economical. But if you’re looking for a performance chain, we would recommend higher chain models by Sram. Freerider Mountain Bike Magazine | 36


Review and Photography: Vinay Menon

Park Tools ‘MTB-3’ Multi Tool

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A Multi tool is one of the most important weapons you could carry on a ride. Like a trail ninja, in crisis situation where your bike needs a quick doctor checkup, a multi tool will scream out like a warrior. Having a set of good quality tools assures the life of your bicycle components too. ‘Park Tools’ is one of the leaders in bicycle tools and its blue color is like a divine light in the garage. Their products are now available in India through select bike stores in major cities. A few months ago I got my hands on the Park Tools ‘MTB-3’ multi tool. A beautiful stainless steel and nickel plated set of hex keys, box end wrenches and a versatile chain tool, the MTB–3 neatly packs into the provided carrying case, so you don’t have to worry about scratching your fancy I-Phone! A Chain tool that works like a beauty with 7, 8, 9 or 10 speed chains, definitely is a plus as you could fix most of the bicycles in the garage using the same set. The MTB-3 is a little heavy (266 grams) in your jersey pockets with all its 22 tools though.

Tools included: •Chain tool •Tire levers (2) •Phillips head screwdriver •Straight blade screwdriver •T25 star-shaped driver •1.5, 2, 2.5, 3, 4, 5, 6, & 8mm hex wrenches •8, 9, and 10mm box end wrenches •Bottle opener •0.127”, 0.130”, & 0.136” spoke wrenches •Pedal wrench •Serrated knife

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The Second edition of MTB Shimla kicked off from camp Potters Hill in the quaint town of Shimla. Potters hill which is an eco resort offered the perfect ambience for an MTB race camp. The second edition of MTB Shimla was unique for a couple of reasons1) It was now a two day race as compared to the one day race in 2012 and 2) It was also making up for the weekender edition of the legendary MTB Himalaya. In other words MTB Himalaya will now be a full 7 day race without the weekender category. The riders started coming in on 5th April. What followed were the usual MTB chores of cleaning assembling and shining up their beloved machines. The camp had turned into a small biking fair of its own. MTB enthusiasts from 9 Indian states as far as Karnataka and Meghalaya and 4 Countries as far as Italy had come together for this adrenalin filled, nerve wracking adventure. Age played no barrier as the race featured riders as young as 15 years and as old 53 years – all with one single objective- a desire to conquer the Mighty Himalayas. As the evening passed by the anxiety was clearly growing. There was a mixture of fear, anxiety and anticipation in the air and once the route briefing began it was evident that how much the riders were looking forward to it. The race kicked off on 6th April 2013 at 9:30 AM with 48 riders (52 registrations). There was a small heritage ride within Shimla to familiarize the riders with the mountain air and the flavor of British Architecture that was still alive in the commonplace Shimla(once a summer capital for the Raj).

Words: Ashish Sood | Photography: Samir Azad

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DAY 1

Day one started with a heritage ride around Shimla which was then followed by a transport section of 22 km. From there started the competitive section of 15 km downhill. This was a very steep rocky downhill. It was lose rock very big in size and mostly double-track. There was a small 4 km transport section before the second competitive section on a steep 11 km uphill started. The second competitive section had gradients of 13-15% and this route was through a wildlife sanctuary. The riders then leisurely rode to the base camp.

DAY 2

Day two started from Chail and followed the reverse of day one for the first downhill section. Again a steep downhill with very sharp curves. The terrain as again gravel and lose rock. This was a tricky section and saw a few falls, the most serious being Swapnil from Kota Rajashthan who has a small shoulder dislocation- nothing very serious though.

About MTB Shimla

MTB Shimla is a two day race in the foothills of the mighty Himalayas. Earlier known as the MTB Himalaya-Weekender edition the race has now been separated from the main MTB Himalaya event for the ease of the riders. Most of the riding terrain is off-road. This might involve- sand, lose gravel, mud, broken tarmac,rocks. There are some very technical sections and the race will certainly challenge your skills and stamina. MTB Shimla is also the perfect training ground for the legendary MTB Himalaya. The race will give you a real time view into the world of real Mountain Biking. MTB Himalaya takes place in September every year, and this race will give you enough time to analyse what aspects of your game need to improve. It gives a perfect opportunity to come and feel the adrenalin rush in the Himalayas.

More info at: www.mtbshimla.com Freerider Mountain Bike Magazine | 40


Brett Rheeder soars at Vienna Air King Photography: Andreas Schaad

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The dancing star of this year’s Viennese freeride mountain bike waltz is Canadian. Against the backdrop of the Austrian capital’s city hall, Brett Rheeder pulled off two mind-boggling winning runs to become Vienna Air King 2013 on Sunday. Never before have the tricks showcased at one of the Vienna Air King events been so spectacular as were the masterpieces performed by the athletes competing in this year’s edition of the freeride mountain bike challenge. Already during the pre-qualifying and qualifying events on Friday and Saturday, the riders set the bar so high that not only insiders could guess that Sunday’s finals would see mountain biking action at its best. With good weather conditions during his winning runs, Canadian Brett Rheeder left the cheering crowd at the city hall square in the Austrian capital absolutely speechless as he demonstrated the finest art of freeride mountain biking. “Finally, I managed to win - it’s absolutely amazing,” said the newly crowned Vienna Air King following his first victory at an FMB World Tour event. “It was a picture-perfect start to the season and an incredible event for me.” Despite fierce competition, the Canadian landed a superb victory ahead of Belgium’s Thomas Genon, whose tour de force secured him countless amazed fans and the second place on the podium. Third spot took one of last year’s top performers, British rider Sam Reynolds. At Saturday’s Panasonic Best Trick Contest, it was one man in particular who left the spectators awestruck - Pavel Alekhin. With the first Backflip Barspin to Barspin to Tailwhip ever performed, the eccentric Russian secured himself standing ovations. The Red Bull Berg Line wildcard went to Swedish rider Anton Thelander. Freerider Mountain Bike Magazine | 42


A new race mode, a new challenge for the riders and quite some prize money – the Nordkette Downhill.Pro 2013 promises an epic fight between an elite group of pro-riders and their challengers - the locals. Staged on one of Europe’s most demanding downhill tracks, ten world cup riders and 90 locals will try to tame the monstrous hill and its ferocious 4.2 km track in less than 09:21min; the track record set by Sam Hill the year before and the fivetime downhill world champion has announced his interest to return and defend his record. On Saturday, July 20, this gravity-defying event will be hosted on Innsbruck’s Scott Nordkette Singletrail, right in the heart of the Austrian Alps. The winner takes it all – other than in the years before, the pros won’t have the support of a four-member team, but will have to fight for the 5,000€ prize money as lone warriors. It’s them against those who know this merciless hill inside out, the locals. Freerider Mountain Bike Magazine | 43


The new race mode comes with a special treat for all young guns: the fastest juniors compete against each other in the Nordkette Downhill.JR to win an extra 2,000₏. Spicing it up for the likes of Richie Rude, 2012’s Junior Vice-World Champion who participated twice in Innsbruck.

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The hard facts remain unchanged: A long-distance downhill race on a monstrous hill, steep as can be, testing everybody who dares to take it on. With a track length of 4.2 km, a difference in altitude of more than 1000 m from start to finish, and a 36° drop - the battlefield is steep and gruelling. The trail starts at the 1850 m-high Seegrube and features roots, cliffs, banks, North Shores and drops – a ten-minute non-stop free ride terrain has to be mastered to make the finish line at the s o-called Hungerburg. “A massively long and tough track! I tried to make not too many mistakes and hitting all the lines. I was pretty impressed with the crowds cheering along the track! Great Race!” is how a stoked Sam Hill, fastest man to date on the Scott Nordkette Singletrail, showed to be impressed with last year’s race. After the first successful edition in 2011, the Nordkette Downhill.Pro is again hosted by the alpine town of Innsbruck. No other place in the world offers such a unique blend of urban flair and rugged mountain terrain, making this gravity-defying event in the heart of the Alps a one-of-a-kind race, testing the athletes’ abilities. Follow the preparations at www.nordkette-downhill.com

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freerider mountain bike magazine

www.facebook.com/freeridermtbmag Photo: Anil Kumar Rider: Naveen Barongpa Location: Sitlakhet, Uttarakhand - INDIA

Profile for Freerider Mountain Bike Magazine

Freerider Mountain Bike Magazine #15  

Issue # 15 - May 2013

Freerider Mountain Bike Magazine #15  

Issue # 15 - May 2013

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