Bike check: What they’re riding at Windham

By Jon Pratt and Karl Rosengarth,

We’re hanging in the lift line at Windham and scoping out the rides of both pros and amateur racers alike. We asked them about their setup and what the downhill course is like this year.

Rae Gandolf, Zanesville, Ohio

  • Bike: Intense M9 FRO, set up with Hopey steering damper.
  • Racing: WC Pro Women
  • Thoughts on the WC course: Jumps are large, even for World Cup, and the rest of the course is fast and fun. Running the bike at full travel mode, and blowing through all of it.

Taylor Alison, Roxbury, N.Y.

  • Bike: Zerode G-1 (New Zealand)
  • Racing: GES Pro Women
  • Thoughts on the GES course: Awesome, gnarly, rocky, fun.

Rachel Atherton, Llangynog, Wales

  • Bike: GT Fury
  • Racing: WC Pro Women
  • Thoughts on the WC course: Very dry, dusty and loose. Experimenting with tires, searching for traction. It’s fun, with big rocks in the middle and big jumps at the end (including some new jumps this year).

Mike Dart, Richmond, Va.

  • Bike: Specialized Demo 8 II
  • Racing: GES 50+ Open
  • Thoughts on the GES course: Fun and technical. Like the rocks (they’re not too huge). Fast and open sections on the slope where you can get some speed.

Aaron Gwin, California

  • Bike: Trek Session 9.9
  • Racing: WC Pro Men
  • Setup: Running similar to Monte Saint Anne, which is a little stiffer that normal. Experimenting with tires and pressure, but it looks like an intermediate tire with higher pressure is best for the conditions.
  • Thoughts on the WC course: Fast. Gotta stay on the good line 100% of the time if you hope to clock a fast run.

Jack Moir, Central Coast, Austraila

  • Bike: Orange 224-EVO
  • Racing: Jack is part of of the seven-member Austrailan Junior National team.
  • Thoughts on the WC course: Dusty, loose, fun. But hate the jumps, already smashed a wheel.

Jeff Nelson, Baltimore, Md. 

  • Bike: Canfield Formula 1 Jedi
  • Racing: GES Cat 2
  • Thoughts on GES course: Fun, fast, dry and naturally rocky.