Author: Guy Kesteven, What Mountain Bike & MBUK

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An ideal dirt dragster for the short trave suspension crew

Trek Top Fuel 7
£1350 4

The totally revamped shorter travel, superlight Top Fuel race bikes top out at the sub 20lb, £4500 full carbon Top Fuel SL, but the good news for most riders is that even the basic alloy bikes like this TF7 are speedy trail weaponry.

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Fox Stormshield 07
£125 4

The Stormshield fabric is waterproof enough to shrug off all but monsoon conditions while steam build-up is reduced by big inner arm/underarm/ side zips for airflow on the climbs.

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Adidas Trail CP Storm
£104.95 3.5

This waterproof features an elastic shoulder panel for stretch fit while the back panel is pleated to expand over back packs. Wearing it over a bag improves the average breathability slightly as the back yoke flap still works.

The low pack size means the Velocity is perfect for commuters

Altura Velocity
£59.99 4

Altura have a great new range of sub-£100 coats this winter and the ultra light Velocity really scores on the weather/ wallet balance. The lightweight fabric is better specced than most at this price.

Rocky Mountain Element 70

Rocky Mountain Element 70
£2695 4

The Element is Rocky Mountain's longest running frame design, which has been given a few tweaks over the years to keep it up to date and looking fresh. The 2007 bike features some significant structural changes, but the classic ride is

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Giant Reign 1
£1250 3.5

Giant's Reign bikes are designed to be all-rounders capable of both climbing well and handling downhill hits. We've been thrashing the Reign 1 all-day trail riding rig.

The Stormtrooper has a sewn in emergency puncture patch

Ground Effect Stormtrooper
£103 4

The Stormtrooper is designed for real wetness, with a slim, super long parka style cut that comes down over your arse and thighs. The hood's thin enough to wear under your helmet and tucks into the collar when not needed.

The Gore Alp X folds up to fit into its own back pocket

Gore Alp X Jacket
£159.99 4

This jacket couldn't be more bike specific...The rounded back cut fits perfectly when riding; the collar has an extra long, articulated shape; the sleeves are velcro-cuffed, and an extendable tail wraps right round under your bum.

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Howies 8 Miler
£90 4.5

The 8 Miler won our jackets test in 2005, and while the 07 samples weren't ready for this test, it's still a great combo of casual style and trail performance.

The Storm Fit is overpriced  but a good performer nevertheless

Nike Storm-Fit
£114.99 3.5

This top ticks all the feature boxes for all round use, but the fabric offers only similar levels of performance and protection to cheaper offerings.

The HT60 weighs a lot  but performs well in all conditions

Lusso HT60
£59.99 3.5

Lusso's HT50 has now been replaced by the high performance HT60. The new material is softer and a claimed 30 per cent more breathable. It's still crumply when new, but the full mesh liner adds comfort and improves wicking.

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