The 5 fastest MTBs in the 2021 XCO World Championships
As usual, we're going to review the top 5 mountain bikes chosen by the top finishers at the 2021 XCO World Championships, but this time the list may have more significance because of the current state of the industry. We are in the midst of a transition to longer travel mountain bikes with more relaxed geometries, but many still feel that this is not the right direction. These were the fastest bikes at the 2021 World Championships.
The 5 fastest MTBs at the 2021 XCO World Championships in Val di Sole
The Val di Sole circuit is taking over from Nove Mesto, or at least sharing the title, as the favourite course of most of the XCO World Cup grid. And this is no coincidence, as this is one of the courses that best reflects the new XCO, and the technical sections, both downhill and uphill, take centre stage.
Val di Sole seems to be the perfect scenario to see which bikes respond better on these routes: the ones that go for new geometries and wider routes or the ones with standard routes?
It should be remembered that these bikes are in the hands of the top 5 XCO riders today and their results would probably not have varied much with any other top model.
5. Maximilian Brandl's SCOTT Spark 2022
Germany's Maximilian Brandl is establishing himself as one of the riders capable of making the podium in any race he starts. The Lexware Mountainbike Team member finished fifth in Val di Sole on a Scott Spark 2022 with SR Suntour suspension and Shimano drivetrain and brakes.
An eye-catching assembly, as we're used to seeing this bike fitted with SRAM and RockShox components from the SCOTT SRAM team. The bright blue Suntour fork tubes have certainly not gone unnoticed by many.
4. Vlad Dascalu's Trek Supercaliber
We already know about the potential of the Romanian rider Vlad Dascalu, but a great result in the elite category was still missing. His fourth position in the World Championship makes us think that this achievement is getting closer and closer.
He was responsible for putting the Trek Supercaliber, the model at the lower end of the new XCO bikes, on the podium. A bike with 60mm of rear travel that contrasts with the 120mm offered by the new SCOTT Spark.
3. Victor Koretzky's Orbea Oiz
Frenchman Victor Koretzky is having his best season as a mountain biker after his World Cup victory and this third place in the World Championship. Koretzky is one of those who are still committed to minimise the weight of the bike as much as possible.
His Orbea Oiz OMX is fitted with the lightest fork in the Fox catalogue and is already one of the few to dispense with the dropper seatpost.
2. Mathias Flueckiger's Thomus Lightrider
Swiss rider Mathias Flueckiger has been the best XCO rider of the season in terms of victories and podium finishes, but as he himself said, this might be one of the last chances he had to win a World Championship.
Faithful to his set-up, Flueckiger has spent most of the season with the same component configuration on his Thomus Lightrider.
1. Nino Schurter's SCOTT Spark 2022
Nino Schurter is the best XCO rider in history, and at the 2021 World Championships in Val di Sole, he has made his legend even bigger. When everyone thought he was incapable of winning a race again, the Swiss has shown that at the age of 35 it is possible to compensate for some weaknesses with all his experience and talent.
Moreover, he has done it on the new Scott Spark 2022, the mountain bike that the market looks to as a reference in terms of trends and in which he himself has been in charge of deciding that 120mm front and rear travel will be the future in this modality. Something that not everyone agrees with, but that has been enough for Schurter to win his ninth rainbow jersey in one of the flagship circuits of the new XCO.
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