Continental Race King Supersonic Tire

3.71/5 (34 Reviews)
Weight : 460g MSRP : $44.98


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Product Description

The Continental Race King is the tire choice of two-time XC World Champion Irina Kalentieva (she scored the silver at the 2010 Worlds at Mt. Ste. Anne in Quebec on these tires, on a very soupy course). While the tire can withstand such goop, its rolled shoulder profile and diamond-head arrow center tread pattern is primarily designed for superb power transfer while maintaining a very low profile so that it rolls exceptionally fast. Luckily, Continental also incorporates transitional knobs from the center to the shoulder of the tire, so that when you're making quick weight transfers, from cornering to straight-ahead power and back again, the tire remains stable and secure beneath you. The shoulder knobs are low-profile, like the rest of the tread. Along the outer edge the pattern is doubled, with a ramped leading edge followed by a block tread -- the ramps roll quickly, but the block bites into the dirt for better traction.Here's the caveat about different types of mud: The tread pattern is fairly tight and if your home turf features stickier mud rather than the soupy variety (clay, perhaps?), a tire with a more open pattern, like Continental's X-King, would shed the slop more quickly. Or for a good pairing for most racing conditions, choose the X-King on the nose, for tauter steering control, and the Race King on the tail, for quicker acceleration and faster rolling. The Continental Race King comes in a 2.2" width with a 26" diameter. The casing features 3 plies totaling 84 TPI under the tread and sidewalls. The tire bead is foldable, and it comes in black on black. Claimed weight is 650g. Application: XC Race / TrailGround: Loose, Hard, Mud


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Reviews 1 - 15 (34 Reviews Total) | Next 15

User Reviews

Overall Rating:1
Value Rating:3
Submitted by Mario a Cross Country Rider

Date Reviewed: March 28, 2014

Strengths:    Super fast rolling. Fastest I have driven yet

Weaknesses:    You just ride the tire of the rim when you corner fast. Had them for one month, did 2 races and both the tires are broken now at the side just by cornering fast on dry sand.

Bottom Line:   
It's a shame they have this huge negative point otherwise I would ride them all the time unless it's really wet. I have the 26 inch 2.2

Expand full review >>

Duration Product Used:   1month

Similar Products Used:   Schwalbe RR, FF


Overall Rating:5
Value Rating:4
Submitted by Ryan

Date Reviewed: June 4, 2013

Strengths:    First let me address that this tire isn't good when used on both wheels. I use the 2.2 in the back and a 2.4 Continental MountainKing in the front and it has been the best tire combination for singletrack mountain biking. The race king is a super fast rolling tire that provides great grip in the rear for climbing and traction.

Weaknesses:    The tire tread could wrap around the tire a bit more i think.

Bottom Line:   
Use this tire on the rear and do yourself a favor and throw a 2.4 MountainKing on the front. You wont be sorry.

Overall Rating:4
Value Rating:4
Submitted by Viktor a Cross Country Rider

Date Reviewed: February 21, 2013

Strengths:    High rolling, good control on sand, root, solid ground.

Weaknesses:    bad control on wet ground, rocks, sidewall has less protect,

Bottom Line:   
I have ridden on RK RS 29*2.2 a half of season, in summer it was cool tire, amazing control on solid ground, roots!
But when autumn has came I start lose control on wet ground.
Two times I teared a sidewall on rock.

So I decide to use this tires only on dry weather and without rocks.
For the wet weather I use tire with better hard pack.

Expand full review >>

Price Paid:    $32.00


Overall Rating:4
Value Rating:4
Submitted by excalibur1200

Date Reviewed: July 6, 2012

Strengths:    Excellent grip, soft ride, corners well. high volume. quiet and very fast on pavement.

Weaknesses:    Mine came in heavier than specified at 457g and 454g, heavier than the 430g specified (2.0 size).
Narrower than claimed, measured 1 7/8" wide @ 35 PSI.


Bottom Line:   
Superb grip, supple ride quality, quiet.
Only 4 stars because heavier and narrower than stated by Continental, should labelled 1.9
Three months and no flats yet although I'm using these 90% on paved surfaces, no knobs have fallen off despite heavy braking unlike some users have experienced on here.
If you use your bike to get around town and ride the occiasonal hard packed trail these are a very good choice grip is outstanding and the low knob height means squirm is virtually absent.
For dedicated XC riding and racing there are plenty of other reviews here.

Overall Rating:4
Value Rating:3
Submitted by aerius a Cross Country Rider

Date Reviewed: May 26, 2012

Strengths:    Great climbing grip on hardpack
Fast, incredibly scary fast


Weaknesses:    Next to useless on mud or loose dirt
Fragile, keep the heck away from rocks
Cornering can be interesting


Bottom Line:   
This is an all out race tire for relatively smooth hardpack conditions and should be treated as such. It rolls like a slick on hard surfaces and zips up to speed as soon as you put the power down. On hardpack & paved surfaces it's almost unbeatable, it sticks like glue and will grip on the climbs as long as you can keep the cranks turning. I expected it spin out on tree roots but it stuck to those as well.

Downsides? As soon as you hit mud or anything but the thinnest coating of loose dirt, the tire will slide out and dump you on your face, on those surfaces you'll have to ride it as if it's a slick. The Supersonic casing is fragile, it should be treated as a race only tire and not an everyday tire. You'll also have to re-adjust your cornering technique, I've found that a foot down moto-style works best for high speed turns while at lower speeds it helps to weight the tires hard to get it through the turn. If you try to casually lean it through a turn on anything other than paved roads or super solid hardpack, it tends to let go and slide out.

Overall Rating:1
Value Rating:1
Submitted by cesalec a All Mountain Rider from Chihuahua, Mexico

Date Reviewed: April 3, 2012

Strengths:    Fast rolling... that is pretty much it

Weaknesses:    It doesnt sit properly in the rim (while tubeless), beads dont hold air no matter what presure you pump in it

Bottom Line:   
The most frustrating tire I have ever owned....

If the rest of the continental line up is like this I wont try them anymore...

Expand full review >>

Duration Product Used:   3 months

Price Paid:    $58.00

Purchased At:   universalcycles.com

Similar Products Used:   Schwalbe tires, WTB TCS tires

Bike Setup:   GT Force 3

Overall Rating:4
Value Rating:4
Submitted by BMC FS a Weekend Warrior from Florida

Date Reviewed: March 23, 2012

Strengths:    Fast rolling and great climbing for a rear tire only!

Weaknesses:    Rear tire only none, as a front tire everything except when riding on concrete

Bottom Line:   
Bought a set of these over a year ago. After the 1st ride and eating dirt 3 times at the turns, I took them off and put them on my dog running bike. But after buying a new wheelset and setting up ghetto tubeless, to which my Bontrager XR3 would not set, I panned around the garage and seen the conti's. Not wanting to fork out the $$ for yet another tire, I decided to give the Conti another try as a rear only. Note; it set perfectly the 1st time ghetto using 1" gorilla tape and a stans tubeless stem. I have two rides with it on the rear and a Bontrager XR4 up front and must say that I am very pleased with the setup.
Bottomlline: as a rear tire only, perfect, as a front, never ever again.
Another note; my Bontrager XR4 aired up ghetto 1st time also. No issues yet.

Expand full review >>

Favorite Trail:   Alafia, Boyette, Loyce Harpe, Santos

Duration Product Used:   Tested or demo'ed only

Price Paid:    $45.00

Bike Setup:   BMC Speed Fox, 26" 1:9

Overall Rating:2
Value Rating:2
Submitted by sczuplak a Racer from Fort Lauderdale

Date Reviewed: September 17, 2011

Strengths:    Super fast, straight line speed and ease of acceleration are great

Weaknesses:    Whether dry or wet cornering on these things is a nightmare, i have them front and back and the whole bike just looses it on anything loose but then never gets it back, I can handle a little slip but if you put these tires to the edge theres no getting them back.

Bottom Line:   
I cant stand these tires, I've lost it too many times doing what i do on my home trails, I'm having to slow down my ride because the tires cant hold me in the corners.

Expand full review >>

Duration Product Used:   Less than 1 month

Bike Setup:   Niner jet 9

Overall Rating:5
Value Rating:5
Submitted by antifreund a Cross Country Rider from Mountain View, CA

Date Reviewed: July 4, 2011

Strengths:    fast, light, wear slowly

Weaknesses:    none so far

Bottom Line:   
Great tire if you can find it on sale

Expand full review >>

Favorite Trail:   skyline

Duration Product Used:   Less than 1 month

Price Paid:    $60.00

Purchased At:   came with the bike

Similar Products Used:   relatively expensive

Bike Setup:   Rocky Mountain Element team, complete XTR components, Fox RL,
XTR hubs and wheels

Overall Rating:5
Value Rating:4
Submitted by RecceDG a Racer from Windsor, Ontario

Date Reviewed: May 29, 2011

Strengths:    Incredible grip on dry hardpack to (slightly) moist singletrack. Grips wet rock and roots very well. Very fast rolling and very light.

Weaknesses:    Zero grip in mud. Thorn resistance of a gum wrapper

Bottom Line:   
Continental's premium "dry" condition race tire. This tire is exceptionally fast on dry hardpack, rock, roots, paved, and moist-but-tacky loam.

The knobs are low and the tire has a "round" profile, minimizing the amount of tire in contact with the ground at any one time. It rolls very, very fast - on paved or hard sections it is almost like a road tire - and it is super-lightweight so it accelerates very quickly.

The secret to the grip is the sticky "Black Chilli" compound rather than the mechanical interlock of the tire knobs. This means that the tire responds well to load: taking a corner at a slow to medium speed may result in sliding, but really load the tire up and corner hard and it will grip. This takes a little getting used to, but once you realize that the tire wants to be worked hard, you can carry a lot more speed than you thought possible.

The tire has two weaknesses:

The first is that it is utterly unsuitable for mud. The low-profile knobs load up immediately and there are no large side lugs to assist when the going gets sloppy. As little as a quarter-inch of mud can cause these tires to instantly break loose. Moist forest loam is fine, but get into mud and you are going for a ride.

The other is the paper-thin Supersonic carcass. Fine for regular use (and actually surprisingly resilient) the carcass offers zero thorn resistance. If your riding area is full of thorns, this tire is not for you.

Note that Continental's size rating is out to lunch. While listed as a 2.0, this tire measures 1.8"

If the aim is going fast, and the conditions match what the tire is designed for, this is an amazing tire.

Expand full review >>

Favorite Trail:   Black Oak

Duration Product Used:   1 Year

Price Paid:    $80.00

Purchased At:   Bicycle World

Similar Products Used:   Various other XC race tires

Bike Setup:   Norco Faze, RK Supersonic 2.0

Overall Rating:5
Value Rating:4
Submitted by OLx6 a Racer from Iowa

Date Reviewed: May 4, 2011

Strengths:    2.2 RK - Roll fast, light weight, good volume, great traction in most conditions.

Weaknesses:    Thin side walls

Bottom Line:   
Trails here are loamy and/or hard pack littered with roots, and have a few rocks. The tires grip perfectly in the loamy soil and hard pack. They are good on sticky mud, but not good on sloppy mud.

These tires are extremely fast, provide good cushion, and grip well in corners at the right tire pressure. Pressure for these tires is key > run low pressure.

Expand full review >>

Favorite Trail:   Any good single track

Duration Product Used:   1 Year

Price Paid:    $55.00

Purchased At:   Jenson USA

Similar Products Used:   Conti MKs, Schwalbe RoRo, Panaracer Razer MX

Bike Setup:   Light weight 26" hardtail. Tires run with tubes at about 28 psi front, and 35 psi rear.

Overall Rating:1
Value Rating:1
Submitted by Perfero a Racer from OC, CA, US

Date Reviewed: April 28, 2011

Strengths:    Lightweight.

Weaknesses:    Everything!

Bottom Line:   
(29", 2.2) Terrible product. These tires are only useful for straight line, seated climbing. You want to get out of the saddle for some added power? Forget it! They slip if you don't position yourself just right to balance things out. You want to hit a corner on a fire road with any kind of speed? Think again! The rounded profile and low profile side knobs make un-banked cornering a joke.

While those are bad characteristics for a tire to have, the worst is the flimsy - and I do mean flimsy - sidewall. Contrary to problems others have had, I didn't have a problem setting them up tubeless and have never really had major problems with them holding air but where I have a MAJOR problem is with the fact that the sidewall is so week that, once it breaks in, it rolls over every time you dive into a turn making it nothing short of dangerous as you're constantly risking having the tire completely separate from the rim in all moderate or above cornering situations.

Bottom line, don't bother with these things; you'll seriously regret spending your money on garbage!

Expand full review >>

Duration Product Used:   6 months


Overall Rating:1
Value Rating:1
Submitted by nightrod a Racer from singapore

Date Reviewed: February 12, 2011

Strengths:    X-king RS 2.2 weight, they are so light they cant hold air when mounted tubeless

Bottom Line:   
dont buy

Expand full review >>

Favorite Trail:   Butterfly

Duration Product Used:   Less than 1 month


Overall Rating:5
Value Rating:5
Submitted by JasonByers a Cross Country Rider from Warne, NC, US

Date Reviewed: January 23, 2011

Strengths:    Light weight, Big Volume, Easy to mount

Weaknesses:    Sloppy mud but what tire doesn't have this as a weakness. Doesn't have great braking power.

Bottom Line:   
I've only put maybe 50 miles on this tire so far but I was so impressed I wanted to review it already. When you first mount this tire you will want to send it back because it is so narrow. The first ride of only 12 miles it grew 1/8in now after only 50 it’s almost the claimed width. Today was the first real test on a pretty technical trail in north Georgia. Most of this trail was loose over hardpack, leaves, roots, rocks, a little mud. The Race King ate it all up. It wasn't great in the mud but no light weight XC tire really is. I had to do a little standing and it barely spun at all on the leafy hill climbs. The big casing low pressure seemed to do well in the roots too. The only thing I wish were a little better is its tendency to let loose during hard braking. I would be nervous to run this as a front tire from the lack of side knobs but for a rear it's awesome. I've been running the Mountain King 2.4 in the front for a while and now with the Race King 2.2 in the rear I'm super happy. I run this tire at 32psi with light weight tubes and I weight close to 200lbs.

Expand full review >>

Favorite Trail:   Jack Rabbit Mountain

Duration Product Used:   Less than 1 month

Price Paid:    $35.00

Purchased At:   Amazon

Similar Products Used:   Various xc type tires

Bike Setup:   Jamis Dragon Pro Conti Race King 2.2 on rear and Mountain King 2.4 front both tubed.

Overall Rating:1
Value Rating:1
Submitted by madjh a Cross Country Rider from Burgos, España

Date Reviewed: December 30, 2010

Strengths:    The price, nobody want this tire so you can find cheap. Fas tire in hard surfaces.

Buena rodadora, muy duradera.


Weaknesses:    In wet conditions it is the worst tire ever made. In gravel is very bad. Don´t take corners properly.

No agarran nada en condiciones de mojado, con un poco de agua o rocio de la mañana se convierten en muy peligrosas no traccionando nada. No tiene tacos laterales y no agarra bien en curva. No recomendada para rueda delantera, quizas como trasera pueda servir ya que no es mala rodadora.


Bottom Line:   
This tires are good for people who don´t race. They are fast in good paths but have problems in wet conditions and gravel.

Buena eleccion para gente que va de paseo con la bici o no exige nada a unas cubiertas mas que una buena duracion, ese es el punto fuerte, la duracion. Ademas es buena rodadora, cosa que sirve de poco si no agarra en curva con terreno suelto o humedo.

Expand full review >>

Favorite Trail:   Sierra de la Demanda

Duration Product Used:   1 Year

Price Paid:    $18.00

Purchased At:   Motoburgos

Similar Products Used:   Kenda, Schwalbe, michelin, tioga, maxxis, duro, Huchinson.

Bike Setup:   Exclusive genesis full XT

Reviews 1 - 15 (34 Reviews Total) | Next 15

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Conti Race King Supersonic or Race King Eace Sport?

I'd appreciate any help/inof to help me choose between these two tires I am a bigger guy, 230, on an Orbea Oiz, just ride dirt roads, very litte sand and rocks, NO hucking/jumping, (those days are way over:nono:) Plan to buy the 2.2's. From the Coni website it look like the RK Supersonics are 470gms ... Read More »

Race King 2.2 supersonic on rear of 2011 RZ 120

I had a Continental Race King 2.2 supersonic laying around and decided to see if it would fit on the rear of my 2011 RZ One Twenty 2. Does it fit? sure. But as you can see its very close! [URL=http://imageshack.us/photo/my-images/534/img05121w.jpg/][IMG]http://img534.imageshack.us/img534/9721 ... Read More »

Race King supersonic 2.0 or 2.2

Wish it came in 2.1 also. For fire trails non racing mainly hill climbing which size to buy ? 155 lb rider on Ti lynskey 26' SS'er. Currently running 2.1 smoke and dart folding at 570g and 599g. I guess one of each would work also ? :skep:Read More »

Continental Race King Supersonic 2.0 weight

Not sure if this is already posted on site, but thought this might be helpful. I just received two new tires today and thought I'd weigh before mounting them. This is a Continental Race King Supersonic 2.0. This is not the protection version. Weight by my scale: 397g [URL="Race King 2.0]"] ... Read More »

Race King 2.0 Supersonic Tire Pressures w/tubes

Seeing some of the threads (and for that matter, on the CBC coverage of the recent World Cup in Mt St-Anne) where the trend is towards ever-lower tire pressures, I'm curious as to what sort of pressures people are running in the Race King 2.0. I totally get that a larger volume tire can be run at ... Read More »

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