Video: Ripping trail 10 years ago

Here’s a classic from 1999 — back when Lycra and dual crown forks appeared on the same bikes.

Rider: Jim Norman. Then a DH racer and bike shop guy. Now doing OEM at Fox Racing Shox.

Bike: 1998ish Specialized FSR, an awkwardly XC-ish predecessor to the Mighty Enduro. This bike was pre-Brandon Sloan. When Sloan came to Specialized, the bikes got longer, lower and slacker.

Trail: Semi-technical NorCal style in Rockville Hills park. I forget the real name of this trail, but we called it Solomon Grundy — after the inarticulate zombie in the Legion of Doom. That name hit me one day when I blew a turn and almost went off the side.

Video equipment: Shot on a VHS camcorder the size of a house. Apologies for the [lack of] quality.

Technique note: Back then I was a hold-on-tight-and-pedal-as-hard-as-possible kind of rider. I knew Jim was way smoother than I was, but I had no idea why. Watching this video today, his skill is obvious: his subtle pump, his bike angulation, his smooth transitions — his overall flow.

Check out the turn at 1:16. He’s doing this. Sweet!

Click for two minutes of trail riding love.

Know more. Have more fun!

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