Josh Borgmeyer from the Trek Ride the Best tour led the demo and gave me the rundown on all the new features on the Fuel EX line-up. First out on the Fuel EX 9.5. I own the 2006 EX 9 so the new 9.5 was a nice step up. I could never afford to buy it so this ride was as close as I’ll ever get. What a sweet plush ride. The Fox Float RP23 rear suspension has so much versatility, I was able to dial it in pretty quick to give me exactly what I wanted in suspension comfort.
The full XTR components put a big smile on my face. I’ve been riding SRAM X.0 for the past year, so I had to think twice when downshifting… I forgot how smooth XTR feels. I love my X.0, but there’s just something about Shimano that takes me back to the day…
I tell you what too, I’d trade in my Hayes HFX-9 Carbon for the Shimano XTR hydralic disc any day of the week. I’m not a racer and have only owned a couple of bikes so I can’t say much about the technical handling of the EX 9.5 except it was one awesome ride. It climbed, cornered, and cut through everything I gave it like butter. I could really feel the extra inch of travel in back and the 30 mm up front just sweetened the ride.
The SuperCaliber 29’er was my first time out on a 29er. I can’t really give it a fair review because the seat was too high, which made the whole ride a little uncomfprtable. I realized it too far out on the trail and didn’t have the allen to adjust. Not much suspension on the SuperCaliber, so that stiffened up the ride. As for the wheels, I was expecting more out of the 29er, but honestly couldn’t feel too much difference. I was only in the saddle about 20 minutes, so I’ll have to give the 29ers another shake.
Now for the Session 10. What a downhill bombing machine! There were only two drops on the trail worthy of the Session 10 and I took them as hard as I could…several times. I felt like a kid again at the ARCO (my local BMX track)… Flying off the downhill only landing on 10 inches of feathered suspension. The bike weighs about 50 pounds. Can’t feel it going down, but it felt like a hundred on the climbs. I do not recommend climbing with the Session 10… this bike is made for nothing but down, steep and big. I had no business being on that bike, but it sure was fun feeling like a freerider for a few minutes.
I had a good day on the bikes. I’m definitely going to follow the Ride the Best tour schedule and ride more bikes when they come to town.
Josh is an excellent technician. He even helped me troubleshoot a problem with the rear shock on my very own EX 9 and offered his assistance replacing the shock if that’s what it came down too.
Thanks for a great day on the trail TREK.