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Discussion Starter · #1 ·
I registered for the Downieville All Mountain race at the beginning of August despite the fact that I've never even ridden in Downieville. I have a 2012 XL Sultan with a Fox 34 set to 140mm. Would you lower the fork to 130 or keep it at 140? What tires would you run front and rear for this race? Clipped in or platforms (I know this is personal preference, but I'm curious about the replies)? Any other setup advice for this race? Thanks!
 

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If you are riding fork at 140 now and are happy with the climbing, don't change the travel. If you think you have to chase the front end too much on prolonged climbing, start testing 130 now, you will not want to be bugged by a wandering front end for well over an hour in a pack of riders starting when they say 'Go'. There is seriously rough descending down Pauley Creek during the XC race so 140 will be nice if you are happy with handling on the climb. Something I do to tighten up steering on a climb is firm up rear suspension, but leave fork open. This is effective enough without resorting to UTurn and Talas.

Remember you cannot change anything from Saturday to Sunday, so keep that in mind when selecting parts. The premise of the race is to develop the best 'trail' bikes possible, parts that are light enough to climb from Sierra City to top of Sunrise trail with and tough enough to handle the rough terrain on XC and downhill courses. That is the best part of this race, seeing pros with tough tires and if they choose wrong and they flat on one of a million sharp rocks they loose.

I guess one could 'flip' a stem from Saturday to Sunday, and of course raise and lower your seat, but pedals and tires etc have to stay exactly the same. The downhill is not the kind you would want flat pedals on anyway, LOTS of pedaling! Your fitness will be tested to the max in 2 days of racing.

Last year my wife and I used 2.2 Bronson TCS tires, worked great. This year we will probably use 2.2 Conti Trail Kings with ProTection sidewalls. In between the rocks there is a lot of shale and silt and soft stuff, so aggressive treads are good even with miles of not so rough climbing throughout the event.
 

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That Sierra City climb is a long SOB, I think it was 100F all the way up a couple of years ago when hit D'Ville.
 

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Not only long and hot, but the organizers don't want to wake up too early so we have to start well after the sun is above the canyon walls making that stretch before blue point really toasty! Then after an hour uphill to be greeted by the first shade of the pines and the steepest pitches mwaahahahaha, cruel climb indeed. Then between Pauley Creek and 1st Divide the legs start to cramp in the most fun section of race course, then to be greeted by progressively hotter air temps and flatter descents all the way to the finish.. Can hardly wait! The river is cold and oh so nice.

Clarification, I don't increase air pressure in rear suspension to firm it up, just flip the lever to Trail is usually all it takes to steepen the HA a wee bit.

And when I said there is a lot of pedaling on the downhill Sunday that does not mean you will not have to jump or dodge a million rocks, thousand roots, and try to memorize hundreds of turns, some of them dangerous enough to put you in hospital or morgue should you blow one, all through the dust of all the racers hanging in the forest making it hard to see the impacts that will flat your tires or catch a pedal. You may as well start planning for 2015 'cause there is no way one year will be enough!
 

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Hello Dave, sounds like a fun stuff, will you be riding a Burner or a Sultan too this year?


Sent from my iPhone using Tapatalk
 

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Discussion Starter · #7 ·
Thanks for all the feedback so far. I should mention I'm 6'4" and about 205 right now, but may be closer to 185 on race day. The wheels are Enve AM29. I care more about not getting a flat and I'm not going to be competitive. What tires are best setup tubeless for this race? Would you still go 2.2 Conti Trail Kings with ProTection sidewalls?

I'll run XTR trail pedals for the race. I'm also thinking I'll use goggles on day 2.

My rear shock is a fox float rp23 kashima from 2012. I guess I can play around with climbing locked out and the fork at 140, but I'm guessing it may be better to go 130 and not locked out. I get a bit of a light front end on really steep climbs....hmmm.

The biggest thing I need to do is ride as much as possible, but I would like to get the bike sorted and ride it in the race configuration for the next few months.
 

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Bullit, I will ride the Czar again, XX1 with Rotor crank and 30t ring and SID WC at 100mm of travel. It worked great last year so no sense changing. I am NOT doing the AM race, so if I had extra travel in the XC it just means I have more reason to be pissed when stuck behind others in a congo line down Sunrise or Pauley and every other downslope. In the XC it seems I am never alone, with a lot of brake riding. The only place I was totally destroyed was on upper Pauley in the baby heads and In the DH one is usually able to pick off the slower riders one at a time so a more capable bike in the rough can help. There is no bike I can ride the side of a trail up there past 4-6 riders at a time!

FG, there is nothing I can say about tires in regards to your keeping air in yours! My mention of Bronsons and TrailKings was personal, I weight 150 max at 5'8 so my perspective of a good race tire up there is literally different than yours. Both of these I have a lot of time on and they were both awesome and may work just fine for you with a million more psi in them. I suggest you start testing immediately. Pick your favorite trail tires and put minimum air pressure in them, close your eyes on every downhill and go as fast as you can. Hopefully you will hit every rock in the trail for a good test. When you flat, add 2psi and do it again.
 

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Thanks for sharing your Czar setup Dave,
But I don't remember you post your setup at the Czar Build Thread?

Im interested on your crank choice. I am currently undecided whether to get an XX1 or RF Next for my Czar. Care to share why you choose the Rotor?
 
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