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Have bike, will travel…and get NAG titles

17 03 2018

Laurie Harding, 46-50 Women’s Cruiser phenom, got some good coverage in the Jan/Feb. edition of PULL Magazine.

One cool part of her story, that caught my eye at least, was the way Laurie travels to races.

She uses a CBR 250 motorcycle, kitted it out with a 2X2 Cycles bicycle carrier!

And she logs some serious mileage too.

Last year she did over 160 races and did somewhere in the neighborhood of 8-10,000 kms (approx. 6,000 miles).

Her longest trip was a 9 1/2 hour ride from Idaho to BC…that’s no joke.

Definitely an interesting way to get to the races!

Bonus info: Laurie is also, like her team mate Drew Motley, a convert to the Gates Belt Drive (drivetrain).

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Top 4 Cruiser news stories of 2016

31 12 2016

Here we are…at the end of 2016.

A bunch of stuff happened this year in the cruiser world and while I was planning on doing a standard “Top Ten”…it seemed like four key items stood out to me the most out of all the possible ones that I could highlight.

So, without further ado, the top four cruiser news stories of 2016:

4.  The 22″/OS20 wheel size gained some serious momentum this year.

More complete bike, frame/fork, wheel and tire choices made this a more viable choice for many riders to try. Yes, 22s are more sized-up 20s than small cruisers…but there’s often quite a bit of crossover in riders that are interested in 22s and 24s.

With that being said, I’ve been posting about the 22″ phenomenon as far back as 2010 but given that Cruiser Revolution is a cruiser-focused site, I launched Big & Tall BMX in June to do a better job covering both the growing 22″ scene and 20s that are set up for tall riders. Expect to see more stuff there (on B&T) on this topic in 2017.

3. Collabs, Retros and 26″ Cruisers…this year these trends collided.

These trends were already starting to show legs…but this year, we saw two to three of these trends showing up on the same bike! This was clearly in evidence at this year’s Interbike, as well as throughout the year. The Shadow Subrosa collab was one, GT’s 26″ Pro Performer, the SE/Public Enemy Big Ripper…the list goes on.

2. The mellow head angle/disc brake-equipped 24.

Combining the mellow handling of a 26″ dirt jumper with the “flickability” (is that a word?) of a 24, we saw versions of this throughout 2016.  Graham Stanley’s custom Curtis was the first one we saw in 2016, followed by Roy Sutton’s custom Invictus. Later we found out that an industry icon, Harold “McGoo” McGruther, had bought into the concept via Commonground Bikes. Then we learned even S&M Bikes had developed a version…which they debuted at Interbike.

sm-mellow-24

1. Yess introduces a belt drive cruiser…and wins a cruiser title with it!

Yess debuted a belt drive cruiser in April and it definitely caught our attention. Belt drives had been attempted in the past…but were quickly discarded (due to middling success) for more conventional drive trains. This time, it seemed a more robust version had been developed. But like most “innovations”, the best way to judge it’s success is out in the field.

Well, Yess did it in the most convincing way possible. Yess-sponsored rider Drew Motley rode a belt drive-equipped cruiser all the way to the USA BMX #1 Cruiser title at The Grands! This was the first time a non-chain bike had taken the title. Hot damn.

 

 





How Motley bested comp with a Belt Drive

12 12 2016

Paul Tolme of the Belted Blog caught up with USA BMX’s Cruiser Champ recently to talk to him about his “off the chain” win on his Gates Carbon Drive-equipped Yess cruiser.

Here’s a look at his winning main:

As the announcer says, Drew Motley had to win his main to take the title.

And he got it done…on a bike without a chain.

Switching teams, switching drivetrains

Joining the Yess team this season offered Motley the opportunity to ride bikes kitted out with the Gates Carbon Drive system.

And if his Grands performance is any indication, they’ve made a difference.

As Motley tells Tolme in the Belted Blog:

“I really, really liked it immediately…It’s faster. I can feel it. Pedal efficiency is a huge deal in BMX, and the belt just felt more efficient and easier to pedal and faster.”

drew-motley-usabmxAnd Motley is not the only cruiser rider to find success with a belt drive Yess Cruiser.

Jean-Marc Durviaux won the Belgian National Title in the Cruiser 40+ category on one earlier this year.

According to Durviaux (in the Belted Blog) the main advantage is out of the gate:

“I most sense the Carbon Drive as an advantage at the acceleration stage at the start…The first three pedal strokes provide a more instant response.”

With titles starting to stack up…are more riders going to start looking to a belt drive for an added edge on the competition?

I think more than a few might be tempted.

Now if Gates can get some more companies to buy into this this type of drivetrain…well, then I think things will get very interesting.

 

(Pic: USABMX)





The Grands were off the chain

29 11 2016

I didn’t catch a lot of The Grands livefeed over the weekend but I did have the dumb luck to tune in at just the right time to see a little bit of BMX history go down.

Here’s the setting: Drew Motley was in the gate in the no-joke 46-50 cruiser  main.

He needed a win –and only a win– to take the overall cruiser title.

No pressure, right?

Well, he got it done.

From lane 7, if I remember correctly.

That’s an accomplishment on its own…but what might be more exciting is he did it on a bicycle with no chain!

Drew pulled off the impressive win — and the title — aboard a YESS cruiser kitted out with a belt drive drivetrain. (Just like the one we talked about back in April.)

drew-motley-cruiser-champ

This is the first time a non-chain bike has taken a BMX title!

motley-carnes-rupeMotley is in good company…just check out these former #1s congratulating him. (You know Carnes and Rupe ain’t no slouches.)

Motley’s performance and title certainly add some additional legitimacy to YESS BMX’s innovative concept.

It will be interesting to see if this now prompts other riders (and companies) to jump on the Belt Drive bandwagon.

 

(Pics: BMX News & USA BMX)





Yess introduces belt drive cruiser

19 04 2016

The Yess BMX belt drive race bike, powered by the Gates Carbon Drive system, got a lot of hype last year.

It was definitely a big departure from conventional BMX drive trains.

When I finally got a chance to give it a once-over at Interbike, I was impressed. At the same time, I thought to myself, “I doubt they’ll ever get around to making a cruiser version.”

Well, as it turns out….Yess did get around to making a cruiser version.

BMXNews.com dropped the news over the weekend.

yess belt drive cruiser

It will be offered as a complete, kitted out with BOX components, Arisun Tires and a specially-fitted-for-Carbon Drive Onyx rear hub. (Check the full parts breakdown over at BMXNews.com)

Drivetrain Deets 

  • 50-tooth Gates Carbon Drive System Ring (Aluminum)
  • Rear Cog: 22-tooth Gates Carbon Drive System Pulley (Aluminum)
  • Belt: 108-tooth Gates Carbon Drive
  • Gear ratio 1 : 2.27 (which is similar to 41/18)

yess belt drive 24

List price is $2900 ($US, I believe) with a $200 discount incentive if you purchase before May.

Great to see the latest in BMX tech (like this and the 24″ carbon Speedco frame) making its way to the cruiser class.

(All pics: BMXNews.com)