With just three events left to go in this year’s Enduro World Series, Tracy Moseley and Justin Leov lead the women’s and men’s open categories. While both Trek Factory Racing athletes share many of the same sponsors and race on Trek’s Remedy 29, their bikes are markedly different.
We’re going to break from our traditional pro bike format in order to take a closer look at these two similar, yet very different — and equally effective — enduro race bike setups.
Different Remedies for the same task
Moseley and Leov both choose to run Trek’s 140mm-travel 29er trail bike, the Remedy 29, over the 160mm-travel 27.5in Slash. The results speak for themselves, as the larger wheels and modest rear suspension don't seem to be holding either racer back.
The bikes are nearly stock 9.9-level frames with a few small changes. Both feature Trek’s OCLV carbon front triangles and carbon seatstays. Moseley is running the stock alloy chainstays, while Leov has been testing carbon chainstays that might make it onto the top-end production model next year.
The 165cm / 5’4” Moseley rides a 17.5in frame
Justin Leov stands 180cm / 5’9” tall and rides the 19.5in Remedy 29
Both riders have custom rocker links that allow them to run shocks other than the stock Fox DRCV rear shock. Moseley uses the Fox Float X shock, but Leov’s set-up is a bit more unique.
Moseley runs the Fox Float X with the EVOL air sleeve, which increase the volume of the negative air chamber
Thanks to enduro racing, coil shocks are seeing a resurgence. Fox did a bit of custom work for Leov, adding a user-friendly low-speed compression adjuster to his DHX 2 coil shock. This allows him to quickly firm up the suspension for transition stages. “It’s super easy to turn on and off," Leov said. "It’s made a big difference in my riding."
Time will tell if Leov’s one-off custom lever will available for consumers
Moving to the front suspension, Moseley and Leov opt to run longer forks than the standard 140mm models that come spec’d on the Remedy 29. Both Fox-sponsored racers stick with the highly-adjustable Fox 36.
Leov alternated between 150 and 160mm last season, but has generally stuck with 160mm of travel this year.
Both riders run the Fox 36 fork but only Moseley gets custom Enduro World Cup champion decals
Moseley switches back and forth between 150 and 160mm depending on the course. When we caught up with her she was running a 150mm Fox 36 decked out in custom 2014 EWS Champion stickers.
Moseley and Leov run Shimano XTR drivetrains. Moseley prefers the range of a double with a 36/26t gearing and an e*thirteen TRS+ Dual Guide for chain retention.
Two chainrings are better than one for Moseley
“For the last three years I’ve run 2x for everything,” Moseley said."Reason being, I like to pedal my bike and not have to get off and push. I want to be able to spin in the transitions and save my legs."
Leov has been riding XTR Di2 all season. Moseley on the other hand, opted to stick with the tried and true cable-actuated version out of familiarity.
While Moseley runs a 2x, Leov’s Di2-equipped bike is set-up with a single chainring. Shimano doesn’t make a narrow-wide chainring, so Leov runs a Wolftooth Dropstop ring. He was running a 32t chainring for the Crested Butte stop on the EWS circuit, though he often sizes down when training. “I run a 30-tooth when I’m out and about to save my knees,” he said.
Leov also runs an MRP AMg (V2) chainguide.
Leov prefers the smooth shifting of Shimano's XTR Di2 group
Both racers use Stages power meters on 170mm crankarms
Both riders choose Shimano's Saint brakes
Both Shimano-sponsored racers stick with the company’s DH-rated Saint brake levers and calipers.
Leov generally sticks with a 200mm front rotor and a 180mm rear rotor, while Moseley will swap her 180mm front rotor for a 200mm disc for steeper courses.
Wheels and tyres
Moseley has been running Bontrager’s Rhythm Elite TLR wheelset, which feature lightweight alloy rims laced with 28 spokes to Bontrager hubs.
Bontrager's 29in Rhythm Elite wheelset weighs 1,840g
Leov’s bike was rolling on prototype Bontrager carbon rims that appeared to be a carbon version of Bontrager’s Line Elite wheelset. According to Leov, they feature a 28mm internal width (the same width as the Line Elites).
While the front wheel looked new, his rear wheel looked a bit worse for wear.“We did a bit of wheel testing in Keystone last week before the race and really tried to break it and couldn’t,” Leov said.
Well, the first stage of the Crested Butte enduro solved that problem. Leov didn’t pre-ride that stage, and that decision came back to bite him.
“I was racing blind and didn’t realize it was going to be as fast and rocky as it was," he said. "I just tagged one of the rocks flat-out and heard a pretty substantial ‘crack’.”
His tubeless setup held air and he was able to nurse it through the day’s final stage.
With a bit of ingenuity (and a hair dryer) team mechanics were able to rebuild Leov's carbon rim
After the first day of racing, team mechanics worked late into the night to repair the damaged rim using a combination of carbon mesh, epoxy and strips of aluminum. With no oven with which to cure the carbon and epoxy concoction the mechanics resorted to curing it with hair dryers.(For those readers not familiar with the enduro race format, riders are required to start and finish all the stages in a race on the same frame, fork and wheelset. Had Leov been racing cross-country or downhill, his mechanics would have simply swapped the damaged wheel for a new one.)
Moving out from the rims, both riders roll on Bontrager rubber. Upfront, Moseley and Leov were running the 29x2.3in SE5 tyre. This tyre was developed from Bontrager’s G5 downhill tyres for enduro use with a lighter, yet still very substantial casing and a tread pattern designed to grip in loose and rocky conditions.
Bontrager's SE5 is an outstanding tyre for loose and rocky conditions
Leov runs these tyres on the front and back of his Remedy 29. “These are pretty much my go-to tyres these days. I ride them on just about everything. They don’t flat easily and have good traction,” he said.
The Bontrager SE3 is a bit lighter and faster rolling
Moseley’s tyre setup favors a bit more speed. In back, she chose to run the faster-rolling Bontrager 29x2.3in SE3. Moseley noted that she ran 22psi in the SE5 upfront and between 25-26 psi in the SE3 out back.
Moseley is sponsored by Deity components and runs her signature 735mm-wide ‘T-MO Enduro’ handlebar paired with a 50mm Deity Cavity stem and Deity Lean grips.
Tracy Moseley has her own signature handlebar, though at 735mm wide, it's on the narrow end of the spectrum
As she’s one of the few riders to run a double crankset, she runs the dual lever for her Fox DOSS seatpost on the top of the handlebar. Moseley’s saddle of choice is Bontrager’s Evoke RL saddle.
Leov cockpit features Bontrager’s 750mm-wide Rhythm Pro Carbon handlebar with a 50mm Ryhm Pro stem and Rhythm grips. One stand-out feature of his cockpit setup is that he, like several other Foxx-sponsored athletes, chose to replace his Fox DOSS dropper lever with a hacked XTR left shift lever.
“I just like the feel of having the shifter there; it’s something you get used to,” he said of the clever (and much more ergonomic) hack.
Maybe Fox should take this as a hint for the next version of its dropper lever?
Are big wheels the best tool for the job?
It’s clear that from their similar yet different bike setups (not to mention their impressive race results) that 29ers still have a place in enduro racing. Will Moseley and Leov be able to keep their top spots on the podium through the rest of the season? We’ll find out soon enough!