It's a bike heavy week again this week, just the way we like it! With a cross-country race weapon from Specialized and two gravel bikes from Bombtrack, our testers are ready to put in some long miles in the gorgeous spring weather. Plus there are new shoes from Rapha and another mountain bike dropper post from PNW to add to the review list. Dig in...
Specialized's cross country full susser, the Epic has seen a hefty overhaul for 2021 and we've got an Epic Comp Carbon here for testing. It's had a lick of the long, low, and slack treatment, and the Epic's unique Brain system has had quite the update too. Check out our first look for all the details.
Bombtrack Hook EXT
We last reviewed a Bombtrack Hook back in 2018, that time it was the carbon Hook EXT-C. Now we have a steel Hook EXT in for test. It's equally big-tyred and got the same go-anywhere attitude. At £2,500 it comes with a carbon fork, a full SRAM Rival groupset and of course, those 27.5 x 2.0 WTB Ranger tyres.
Bombtrack Beyond 2
Next in from Bombtrack, we have the Beyond 2, an adventure bike with additional luggage provisions and lighting in the form of a dynamo. The SRAM Apex equipped bike rolls on 700c wheels and is pitched at the continent-crossing adventure riders.
PNW Loam 150mm dropper post
Recent updates see the PNW Loam dropper post get an overall shorter length, more drop and customisable coloured bands at the collar. You can also adjust the length travel by a maximum of 25mm in 5mm increments We have one in for test along with the brands Loam Lever.
Rapha Explore Powerweave shoes
The Explore Powerweave shoes are for fast paced off-road riding and feature a 3D woven upper fabric for “an unrivalled combination of sock-like comfort and locked-in performance.” The TPU-reinforced yarns are also claimed to ensure high durability and weather resistance, whilst keeping weight down and comfort high.
The carbon footplate finishes just before the toe and heel, which Rapha says provides flex where you need it for comfort while walking. A grippy rubber sole with a recess for the cleat promises you’ll remain surefooted on any terrain in all weather conditions, while the sculpted heel cup is designed to keep the shoe comfortably in place on and off the bike. BOA’s new incremental Li2 dials are also included, and there’s all adjustable arch support to cover a range of foot shapes.
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