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Bike of the Race: Julie Dibens
Posted by: Editor
Posted on: Wednesday 22nd October 2008


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It's a fact, triathletes love kit! And nothing gets more discussed, considered, argued about and drooled over than bikes. We love bikes too, so here is the latest in our occasional series of ‘Bike of the Race’. There are no rules involved – you may be the fastest or the slowest in your age group. You may be an elite athlete. You could be riding the most ‘bling’ bike available, a rare Italian thoroughbred or an old shopper (with basket attached…). Or, we might just like you! As always, our Tri247 staff will be out and about all over the country (well, the world actually), so if you get a tap on the shoulder and asked for a photo – be nice to us, and smile!

Julie Dibens - XTERRA 2008

On-One / Lynskey Titanium Soft-tail prototype

Julie Dibens - On-One Lynskey

Julie looking like the cat that got the cream, after the addition of the On-One decals and Xentis wheels:

Julie Dibens - On-One Lynskey

Julie Dibens is the defending XTERRA World Champion, and for the last year has been racing for Planet X. For the mountainbike section of XTERRA, she rides a race bike from Planet X sister brand On-One - usually their hardtail Scandal. However, for the rigors of Maui, all involved decided something with full suspension would be better for the roughest race track on the circuit.

"Julie's standard Scandal race bike is built around our production frameset - as we sell to racers and long distance riders in the UK." says On-One owner and chief designer Brant Richards, from his shed in Calderdale, Yorkshire. "When we heard about Maui, our first thought was to keep Julie on a hardtail, and get her some skill training, but the more we thought about it, the more we decided that a full suspension project - with a difference - would be a great way forward."

On-One have been working with titanium masters Lynskey Performance - original owners of the Litespeed brand - for around 10 months now, and when the brief for a high performance full suspension race bike was drafted out, Lynskey were at the top of the list of factories they wanted to develop it with.

"We could have done something in carbon, with a Chinese factory like all the other companies in the world", said Brant, "but we thought this special race deserved something different - and that's how the Ti soft-tail was created". R&D and one-off fabrication costs put this frame in the region of £12,000. Using the same front end geometry as the Scandal race bike she's used to, Lynskey were able to use titanium's inherent flex and resilience to create a rear suspension system without pivots or links - driving a super light Cane Creek air shock to deliver "just enough" rear travel to let Julie "really put the hammer down" - says Richards.

"We wanted lightweight, short travel, incredible pedalling efficiency, and enough travel to take the edge of the big hits, yet track through the rough. I also wanted something that was easy for Julie to tune in pre-race-prep without having to have a rocket scientist with her. "The ti front triangle is designed for torsional and lateral stiffness, meaning that when she's hammering, the bike goes in a straight line, or round the corner how she wants to. We didn't want something flexing and causing handling problems. The linkage and pivot free back end means that it's instant stomp-and-go when she wants to put a gap in - far more responsive than other linkage systems, and without the extra fluff and hassle of lockout levers."

The bike is built up with what every pro racer deserves, box-fresh carbon 2009 Shimano XTR, Planet X and On-One finishing kit, destickered suspension forks custom tuned by On-One, and Xentis 4 spoke carbon tubeless wheels, shod with her sponsors Schwalbe tyres.

  • Frame - On-One/Lynskey Ti Softtail Race Prototype
  • Fork - Rock Shox Reba custom tuned
  • Seatpost - Planet X Probe Pro
  • Saddle - Selle Italia
  • Brakes - XTR 2009 with 160mm rotors
  • Wheels - Xentis Kappa
  • Tyres - Schwalbe Racing Ralphs 2.1 or Nobby Nics 2.1
  • Front/rear mechs/shifters - Shimano XTR
  • Crankset/bottom bracket - Shimano XTR 2009

Total bike cost is circa £15,000.

For more details see http://www.on-one-shop.co.uk and http://www.planet-x-bikes.com


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