Schwalbe Dirty Dan Freeride tyres review£45.99

Trail-friendly format of downhill tyre

BikeRadar score3.5/5

The Schwalbe Dirty Dan downhill tyres gained instant fame when Danny Hart rode them to his 2011 World Championship in what seemed like total ignorance to the insanely wet conditions on the Champery course.

This Freeride version delivers that confidence in a more trail-friendly format.

At 960g each, they’re not the easiest tyres to get moving and you’ll want to keep momentum up once you’ve got them rolling. The soft, slow-motion rebound Vertstar triple compound rubber creates a lot of drag on fireroad or Tarmac pedal-ups too. 

Unlike a lot of winter tyres, the reinforced 2.35in carcass still blows up big. The tight tubeless-ready bead and Snakeskin carcass means they’re stable and pinch-proof down to around 20psi, even with tubes in. That means you can wallop them down rocky trails without worry. 

The ridiculous amount of grip means that corners aren’t any obstacle to carrying speed, however muddy, greasy-rooted or damp-rocked the trail is. They’re grippy in intermediate conditions, but don’t expect your £90-a-pair investment to last long in the dry.

This article was originally published in Mountain Biking UK magazine, available on Apple Newsstand and Zinio.

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.
  • Age: 45
  • Height: 180cm / 5' 11"
  • Weight: 68kg / 150lb
  • Waist: 76cm / 30in
  • Chest: 91cm / 36in
  • Discipline: Strict sadomasochist
  • Preferred Terrain: Technical off-piste singletrack and twisted back roads. Up, down, along — so long as it's faster than the last time he did it he's happy.
  • Current Bikes: An ever changing herd of test machines from Tri bikes to fat bikes and everything in between.
  • Dream Bike: His Nicolai Helius AM custom tandem
  • Beer of Choice: Theakston's Old Peculier (not Peculiar)
  • Location: Yorkshire, UK

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