Fabien Barel – Canyon Bike Check
We have just interviewed Fabien Barel who gave us a run down on his new Strive Canyon bike and a bike check.
I try to find the right balance between reach and stack. I have a custom cartridge on the 34 fork, to have better control of the front end and less dive in the fork for my riding style. I went to 34 for weight, and because it is also to try and develop with Fox better 34 forks, im not a big fan of the QR15mm, I definatly prefer the 20mm axle 15mm is not stiff enough. I hope they will be able to make a 34 with a 20mm axle that would be for me the perfect compromise. It definitely has weakness in the QR15mm hub for the type of all mountain riding we are doing.
Drive train is XX1 standard, with an RG1 chain guide only on top to reduce friction, that works well. I’m testing the product and trying to bring an evolution to it for the racing season. A standard set of Mavic ST, on it we have the new prototypes of race Michelin tyres.
Then the rest is a standard Fox shock with a special tuning, but I’m working on something new, that is going to come out very soon. I need to get the right stability and balance between the front and the rear because we went really extreme on the front end and it works really well, so we need to do the same on the back end.
“Cockpit setup is specific to my needs with my tuning preference, I have Avid XO Trail brakes, 780mm Renthal bar and standard 45 mm stem and some development grips.”
The overall frame is really well made, a good compromise between compression ratio that is fairly linear for comfort, and traction on the rear, but it doesnt providie me yet with the dynamism I would like at the moment, thats why I’m working through the tuning of the shock to get that out of it. The back end is a lot more ridged than expected, The chain stay length is the right compromise with the front end balance. Chain stay length is always a ratio with the front centre, if you find a right ratio, thats where you have a balanced bike, a short chain stay with a long front centre is a mess, both equal in style works well, that’s where the balance is.
The goal when I set up my bike is to make sure your body is in the centre and you need to do a minimum movement to transfer the masses to the maximum, thats how you are efficient because you do less movement with less energy on the bike and you carry more speed.