Sunday, August 30, 2009

My new video

Even if I posted on my Vimeo Channel earlier, I thought to post it here too.


Free Web Counters

Locations of visitors to this page

Monday, August 24, 2009

Ashima AiRotor Review

I first saw them in 2007 and in some photos shot at Interbike. From that moment I want it to have them, to race with them. Why? because the design was totally different from any other rotor on the market and they were extremely light.

The rotors come in 140, 160, 180, 203mm and soon in 185. They are available only in 6 hole IS... yeah you can't win grams with center lock. These rotors are special because there are made from a special 410 stainless steel heat treated to HRC 42. HRC is the Rockwall Hardness Scale, which is a hardness scale based on the indentation hardness of a material. The rotors are also double ground for superior flatness. Also the AiRotors will come in different color version such as: Red, Blue, Yellow, White or Black.

ASHIMA has had exceptional growth over the last couple of years. They have the capacity to manufacture 1 million brake pads/month, and since 2008, they have sold over 70,000 AiRotor discs. That's a impressive amount of rotors. You can see how appreciated are these by the racers and weight weenies.

I am running the AiRotors on my Cannondale Scalpel and I was using them also last year on my Cannondale Taurine. I use a Magura Marta 2008 brake, but I had the chance to test them with Shimano XTR, Avid Juicy Ultimate, Avid BB7, and some other brakes. The terrain where I run with them was different. From my rocky and rooty trails in the woods near my home to the mud from the National Championships and the dust from Liman Bike Race.

There aren't much different from a stock rotors, excepting the noise. Like other riders that tested this and talked/read their reviews I guess that is because of the cutouts, but at least for me this wasn't bothering at all, it's good to let people know that you are approaching them without to scare them that bad like when you are whistleing or screaming.

I've noticed that in technical spots a light touch of the brake is enough just to control your speed and to be ready to stop in any emergency cases, because in a race someone could fall in front of you and it's preferably not to injure them harder. On steep descends they seem to get a blue color but no fading. After you finish the downhill and you continue your ride after a few minutes they come back to their 'natural' color.

I've tested these rotors to the maximum and I can tell you that these are the best for a cross country racer or week end warrior. Built to gain grams and to look good too. But there aren't tested like in the Ashima labs (but they don't have the dust and mud :-)) there )

Compared to the standard Magura rotor I can say that these are more powerful, but some other riders don't agree with me, fading a hydraulic disc brake is easy to do, so brake less you guys :-)

The shape and cutouts help for a better heat dissipation and air circulation. I wet or muddy conditions they get dry really quick, so excepting the noise these rotors are the best I've ever tried. However I sandpaper my pads pretty often and I clean my rotors so the noise almost disappears.

I don't really recommend to use these rotors with organic pads, only if you are using them in a cross country race. They wear pretty quick. My SemiMetalic pads were gone in about 4 months (different weather conditions) and I didn't test the Sintered pads yet. A good job is provided by the Ashima SOS pads - Sintered-Organic-Sintered. The sintered is wearing harder and is keeping the rotor cleaner and extend the lifespan. The organic middle smells like a truck burned brake when is heating up but increases the bite and cuts noise at lower speed and temperatures. So now you can have the features of the organic and sintered pad combined in one. Clever isn't it?

They were some problems with the 203 mm version, some customers reporting a deformation of the rotors. I've got some new models, I've tested them and they seem to be better than the 'old' ones.

Also Ashima is coming with a new disc brake. Ashima PCB has been declared a Design Award Winner at the upcoming EuroBike Show! Congratulations ! The technology has never been used in brakes so it's something totally innovative ! Soon I'll get a pair of these and I'll test them. I will also make some time for some of you who would like to test them also.

For more information, please check the ASHIMA Web Site.

If you wanna have you pair of Ashima Airotors or Ashima brake pads, please let me know :-)

Stay tuned because more updates will come.


Free Web Counters

Locations of visitors to this page

Sunday, August 23, 2009

Roel Paulissen defends his Rainbow Jersey

On Sunday, Roel Paulissen (Cannondale Factory Racing) will race to defend his marathon world championship title in Graz, Austria. He won in 2008 in a tight sprint finish with world cross country champion Christoph Sauser. Both riders were involved in a controversial crash, and after protests were filed and reviewed, Paulissen was awarded the title.

"It was a special feeling to ride around in that jersey!" said Paulissen in an interview on "Since I was a young rider, that was one of my big dreams - to get the World Champion jersey."

The Belgian says that becoming world champion changed his life. "The people look at me in a different way... . From that moment, I was known as one of the long distance specialists, which is strange, because I was a cross country racer my whole life and still feel like one."

A year ago at the marathon worlds, Paulissen had an almost home-town advantage, as the race was run near his Italian base. This year, he's less familiar with the course, which he described as difficult and featuring a mix of short, steep uphills and long, gravel road climbs.

"Last year I could tell you before the race how it would go in the race. This year there are a lot more critical points where you can attack and you have to pay attention for the whole time. Especially on the first 50km it is very difficult."

Paulissen will face off against Sauser, Leonardo Paez, Urs Huber, Alban Lakata, Wolfram Kurschat and Massimo Debertolis, to name a few of the top contenders.

When asked about the key to success in marathons, Paulissen said, "I think you have to do both cross countries and marathons to win the marathon worlds. First, you need the endurance to come through the long distance and second, you have to be explosive for the attacks to win." Paulissen spends most of his time contesting the shorter discipline, but enjoys endurance-oriented events.

After the marathon worlds, Paulissen will travel directly to Australia for the cross country worlds happening the next weekend. Then it's onto the final two World Cups in Europe, the GP Roel Paulissen and the Roc d'Azur to close out the season.

Looking longer term, Paulissen said he will continue to race both Olympic distance cross country and marathons as well as some stage races. He said he may even try endurance races such as the Crocodile Trophy or the Leadville 100.

"You can't do these races as a cross country pro during the season, so I'll save them for the end of my career."

Article got from CYCLING NEWS . COM

Free Web Counters

Locations of visitors to this page

Friday, August 14, 2009

Continental Race King Review


I am coming back with another review. This time I would like tell you a few words about the Continental Race King. I had the chance to run the World Cup and Supersonic, both in 2.2, handmade in Germany, the Black Chili compound.

On the Conti web site it's claimed to have 480 grams in 2.2, but seems that I was lucky. Got some lighter models.

I must admit that this tire is having a big footprint on the trail, because the large casing and the big air volume I had a lot of traction and control in almost all weather conditions ! From dry hard pack to sand, roots even on wet. Because of the low knobs but also the low weight it's a really fast tire, a good all arounder. Because the tire is higher than other it's a comfortable tire, making the small rocks and roots to disappear.

On wet trails even covered with leaves I didn't had problems with the traction or the braking. This is also because of the Black Chili Compound, specially made in Germany. Another advantage of this compound is that the tire is not wearing as fast as other racing tires !

I was running with 38psi in front and on rear 41psi, maybe a bit lower pressure on clean courses. After 2000km with the tires I got only a flat and it was a big spike.

A great and fast light-weight tire, with a lot of grip ! I recommend it to everyone that wants to be faster in a race, but also to a rider who want to fell more secure on trails.

If you are from Romania, you can buy the tire from Maros Bike Shop, in wire or Supersonic

Stay tuned, because I will come back with more reviews,


Free Web Counters

Locations of visitors to this page

Thursday, August 6, 2009

Xpedo Twins pedals - Review


After a serious crash, I was forced not to race for the last and this week end. So I am coming to you with a review for the Xpedo Twins Ti pedals.

For the last 3 months I am using these pedals so I can tell a few words about them. First of all even if they have the cage, there are really light. 276gr claimed and 277 on the scale. The cage makes them really robust and hitting roots and rocks is not a problem anymore, so they can be used for cross country, marathons even all mountain.

The pedals have an aluminum body, a titanium or cromoly spindle, and they are featuring 3 cartridge bearings and a SWP spring. The rubber seal is preventing the dirt and the water to get into the pedals and I must admit that is doing a really good job. The titanium spindle is not recommended for a rider that is weighting more than 85kg/185lbs.

For my 65 kg there are amazing. The 3 bearings are running like on there first day. You can clip and unclip de pedal really fast and without any troubles. They are doing the job good on the mud... that's depending on the type and the thickness of the mud.

But for me they work awesome and I am really happy with this pedals. If you would like to ask me more about them, do not hezitate.

Stay tuned because I'll come back these days with more reviews.



Free Web Counters

Locations of visitors to this page