Show all authors
Guy Kesteven

Guy Kesteven

Freelance Writer, UK

Guy started filling his brain with cycle stats and steaming up bike shop windows back in 1980. He worked the other side of those windows from '89 while getting a degree in “describing broken things covered in mud" (archaeology). Dug historical holes in the ground through the early '90s, then became a pro bike tester in '97. Guy has ridden thousands of bikes and even more components the world over since then and can remember them all in vivid, haunting detail. Can't remember where the car keys are, though.

Most Recent

Patience is rewarded   eventually



This super light fork certainly needspatience from its owner because it takes forever to break in. Even after acouple of months it still stayed locked over small bumps like a platform fork,and full travel is a rare treat.

Fat or thin  short or long  there s a stem for you

Your choice of stem on a mountain bike determines your riding position, and that in turn has a big effect on the bike's handling. Here's how to get the right stem

How much suspension travel do you really need

With so many options in terms of inches of travel, different suspension systems and very different ride characters, which suspension will suit your sort of riding best?

Devinci Frantik 1



Over here, Devinci bikes don't yet have the presence of Kona, Rocky Mountain or Cove, but bikes such as the new single- crown Frantik show that they know what they're doing when it's really going off.

Manitou Stance Kingpin



Manitou's entry-level triple-clamp fork isskinny looking, but smoother and more heavy duty than you might think. The170mm stroke uses coil springs and Manitou's well proven TPC damping to givereasonably consistent suspension.

Impressively puncture resistant summer XC rubber



There are loads of ways of designing tyres either by using computers or making pro riders go round and round in circles across different terrain (or both), but we really like Specialized's pragmatic approach to their new cross-country tyres. The Chunder XC basically looks like a skinny, worn out version of their Chunder DH tyre. It has the same tread pattern, but the paired centre knobs are really low, so they roll super quick. It sits on a supple, lightweight 1.9in carcass too, so acceleration is easy andinstant. The side knobs are full size though, so if you get them onto their edges there's plenty of bite for creating your own berms.

Low weight  easy to set up seatpost  only available in 27 2mm


Woodman produce nicely made, well priced bike bits, like this post. The shaft is genuine carbon - not fi bre-wrapped alloy like some - and it even has extra plugs inside to reinforce the clamping zones.




FSA posts come on loads of bikes and they're also well worth a look in their own right. The shaft is forged and then machined from a single piece of alloy to leave it thicker at the front and rear for strength.

Stiff and remarkably light



Fox's monolithic 40 fork has set newstiffness standards. The massive 40mm legs make them relatively stiff oversmall bumps, but once they're moving the titanium-sprung stroke feels great.

Strong  but slim enough to fit into tight gaps



These Soma tyre levers have a steel shank running right through their plastic body to provide extra strength, but they're still thin enough to slip into tight gaps and get tyres off.

Specialized Big Hit FSR II



Specialized's Big Hit bikes has won over numerous Freeride/DH fans over the years. But does an even lower price point and style friendly single crown fork mean that it's going keep riding high?

RaceFace Deus SL



We wondered what on earth RaceFace were thinking when we first saw their seatposts with cantilevered collars, but they've proved themselves superb seat shafts.

Specialized Decibel



When it comes to sleek cool racing helmets, the Decibel is hard to fault - even though it's been kicking around for a while now. It's lightweight with a great vent and airflow system, and also deep internal channels so you never overheat. It comes with a fixed position visor, which can easily be removed for the racer look. With so much material removed, Specialized have included a carbon inner skeleton - which they call the Matrix - to keep things strong. The retention system is simple and straight forward and with the straps attached directly to this it means they're thankfully tangle-free. A classic.




Based on the Dr Jekyll 4 Cross frame, Mr Hyde is longer, slightly slacker and lighter to create a super tough hardcore hardtail. Unique transmission and even wheel size adjustability make it a truly 'do anything' rig, too.  

Back to top