Downhill Bikes

Downhill Mountain Bikes of the Pros | What Bikes Do The Professionals Ride?

The bikes that have carried the best on the planet to World Cup success...

The 2016 World Cup season has now come to a close, so it’s the perfect time to take a look at the downhill mountain bikes of the pros and see which rigs have been the most successful this year.

> The best downhill mountain bikes of 2016

Of course, these will all be familiar rides by now to anyone who has been following the series, but do you know all the bikes that claimed a top 10 finish in the men’s or were piloted to success by top women? Here’s the list…

Aaron Gwin: The YT Tues CF

Aaron Gwin’s move to YT was one of the big talking points of the off-season, and Gwin didn’t let the German brand down, riding their rig to the 2016 overall win.

The price tag on the YT Tues is more than reasonable and the bike is now proven on the big stage. Aaron rides a stock size large Tues CF frame. He races with Fox Racing Shox suspension and runs a 40 Air fork and Float X2 rear shock with some custom-tuning.

Rachel Atherton: The Trek Session 9.9

The other big talk of the 2015 off-season was the Atherton’s defection from GT to Trek. Rachel Atherton clearly didn’t struggle with the transition. Her winning season will go down in history and has not only made waves in the mountain bike world, but attracted a welcome heap of attention from the mainstream media as well.

Rachel’s Trek is a standard large Session 9.9 carbon frame. The front centre has been extended 6mm with a special headset. Rachel runs the Fox DHX2 coil-sprung rear shock and Fox Float Factory 40 fork. Both fork and shock are production versions, though with some custom tunes.

Danny Hart: The Mondraker Summum

Aaron Gwin may have won the overall this season but Danny Hart won the hearts of the downhill faithful – as well as back to back to back World Cup stages and a second World Championship of course.

Danny rides a stock size large carbon fibre Mondraker Summum frame. He doesn’t run offset shock bushings or alter the headset on the bike. Hart uses the Fox 40 Air fork and DHX2 rear shock with a 425lb/in spring, after changing from Marzocchi to Fox Racing Shox this year.

Mondraker will have left the World Champs grinning after Hart was joined in the top three by Laurie Greenland and Florent Payet, also on the Summum.

Manon Carpenter: The Saracen Myst

It was a frustrating season in some ways for Manon Carpenter. She couldn’t better her third place finish on opening day in Lourdes, though did manage to secure second in the overall by staying in the top five at every stop on the World Cup.

The 2014 World Cup and World Champs winner has been on the Saracen Myst for some time now. She rides a medium frame with Fox 40 Float and Fox DHX2 suspension.

Troy Brosnan: The Specialized S-Works Demo 8

After Loic Bruni won his first World Cup on the Demo in Cairns last April, it looked like there was every chance he would build on the success and take the overall title away from Aaron Gwin, the man he replaced at Specialized.

It wasn’t to be of course, but Specialized are still the only brand who can boast three riders in the top 10 of the men’s standings; with Bruni taking sixth, Loris Vergier coming in at seventh and Aussie Troy Brosnan riding into third.

Tracey Hannah: The Polygon Collosus

Tracey Hannah finished just 10 points behind Manon Carpenter in the overall world cup standings this year. She and her brother Mick Hannah ride the Polygon Collosus.

The Hannah’s will be back out in Indonesia soon to work on the Collosus on the off-season and try and improve on a good year on the bike.

Greg Minnaar: The Santa Cruz V10

Greg Minnaar never fails to live up to his reputation. He has more wins under his belt than any other man in downhill history, and proved he’s not done with yet another win at Fort William earlier in the year.

Greg rides a custom size XXL Santa Cruz V10. As well as Josh Bryceland and Steve Peat, Luca Shaw, part of the ‘SRAM | Troy Lee Designs’ race team also runs on the V10, and Shaw too claimed a top 10 overall finish this year.

Connor Fearon: The Kona Supreme Operator

It was a good season for Connor Fearon, who racked up five top 10 finishes in the seven World Cup stops. Connor has been charging on a Kona Supreme Operator and is one of few on the circuit who still uses flat pedals.

Tahnee Seagrave: The Transition TR500

It’s not been long since Tahnee Seagrave got off the Devinci Wilson and climbed onto the Transition TR500, but there’s plenty from the past season for the 21 year old to be happy about.

Tahnee finished fourth in the overall rankings when all was said and done, but she’s shown huge signs of intent; three second-place finishes, a third, fourth and a fifth to be exact. Tahnee also won qualifying in Lourdes and in Lenzerheide. We can’t wait to see how she gets on next year.

Remi Thirion: The Commencal Supreme DH V4

Remi Thirion rides a medium-sized Commencal Supreme, often switching to a longer frame size on steeper tracks.

The alloy bike weighs in at 16.8kg, with Thirion preferring a slightly heavier build to up the high-speed stability.

Adam Brayton: The Scott Gambler

It’s been a hell of a season for Adam Brayton, who surprised many by riding to a top 10 in the overall, including a fourth place finish at Fort William.

That podium finish in Scotland was the first for the Scott Gambler, a bike which has no problem ploughing through the rocks, root and dirt around the world. Brayton will be looking to build on from here and become a regular top 10 rider.

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