Spy Photo?

Steve Peat has had great success aboard his Santa Cruz V10 this past season. This past years ride was a stock frame, off the shelf. We all new that would'nt last. Papa Roskopp has been working on a new linkage system that still is the heart of VPP but would give Steve a shorter stroke shock as well as carbon fiber linkages. Steve eluded to such changes in this past MBA where they profiled his 06 race bike. This picture which appears to be from the pages of MBUK (by the font in the lower left) shows just that. The frame is increased in top tube length yet given more standover height, reducing the length of the tubing drops the weight. The shorter shock stroke reduces the weight. The carbon fiber linkages, well they reduce the weight and add an oh-so hard to beat Gucci factor. They claim to have dropped a pound. We have seen these one-offs before Sam Hill's prototype linkages aboard his IronHorse Sunday. Fabien's strange tubing and shorter linkage design on his Kona Supreme. And, well lets not forget all the mystery surrounding the Micheal Knight of Downhill, Greg and his Honda RN101. The SC frame may never see the light of production, and thats fine. Because what this shows is that when it comes to winning, almost no price is too high.

Reluctant businessman

Check out this interview on the founder of the brand Patagonia, see how a company can be socially responsible and really quite profitable.

"I don't have a bank account. I have a checking account. I don't buy stocks. I give most of my salary away. I've got everything I want ... you can't bribe me."
-Yvon Chouinard
  • CBS Sunday Morning Interview
  • Vanessa Quinn is down and out.

    Top New Zealand mountainbiker Vanessa Quin broke her neck during the national championships in Nelson at the weekend but has escaped being paralysed.

    The former world downhill champion fractured her C2 vertebra after spilling in her seeding run on Saturday. She also cracked her sternum and suffered hand injuries.
    The horror crash comes after an injury-plagued 2006 season, where she shattered her arm in a world cup race in Spain and needed further surgery after the Rotorua world championships in August.
    It's left the 30-year-old from Tauranga contemplating another six months off her bike, although she's just relieved she's still able to walk.
    "I've had some pretty amazing crashes where I've walked away scot-free ... but this one was over the handlebars which is never good," Quin said from her hospital bed.

    The C2 injury is the same vertebra former Superman actor Christopher Reeve and top New Zealand jockey Ken Browne both crushed, leaving them paralysed.
    It's the second time in five years Quin has broken a bone in her neck, after crashing on a velodrome in 2002. Her boyfriend, Niki Urwin, is a former motocross champion who was paralysed after crashing during a competition in Melbourne four years ago.
    "Because I've been through one neck injury, I wasn't too scared when they diagnosed it, but there were a few teary moments. The doctors are pretty happy with the stability of it, and there are absolutely no spinal problems at all - no tingling or anything."
    Quin's crash came halfway through her seeding run on a deteriorating track through a Nelson pine forest.
    "I was quite winded so I sat there for a minute until the marshalls came and got me off the track.
    "I knew straight away that things weren't all where they should be but I just needed to move because I knew how long things take to happen that far into the forest."
    With the aid of a marshall, she managed to walk nearly a kilometre down the track to the first-aid tent, where a medic immobilised her neck.
    Six men then stretchered her off the course to a nearby forestry road and Quin said the response from organisers and event staff had been `outstanding'.
    She will now be in a metal brace for up to 10 weeks and hopes to be well enough to fly back to Tauranga later this week, determined to get back on a bike again soon.
    "Like I've said in the past - you can't live your life in cotton wool.
    "I'll take this one day by day, and I'm just feeling very, very lucky."

    By JAMIE TROUGHTON - The Nelson Mail
    Thanks for the news Jamie.


    Aussie National Champ

    Just got word that JARED GRAVES is your 2007 Australian National Champion.

    1. Jared Graves
    2. Nathan Rennie
    3. Jared Rando
    4. Ameil Cavalier

    Hill apparently crashed in the final turns before the finish. His techs stated that he had a front end wash out... he thinks.
    He ended up around 8th.

    In the Jr Division, Mitch Delfs took the win.

    No word yet on the women results.

    In the same neck of the world...Kieren Bennett won the New Zealand National Championships!

    Hmmm... check it out... all the winners have something in common...they all just happen to be UTOPIA Optics riders! ... a coincidence?!?! i think not!


    Elite Men:
    1. Luke Madill
    2. Alex Lloyd
    3. Bryn Atkinson
    4. Jared Graves

    Elite Women:
    1. Caroline Buchanan
    2. Sarsha Huntington
    3. Julia Boer
    4. Alice Minahan

    U19 Men:
    1. Michael Jobson
    2. James Maltman
    3. Aaron Drinkwater
    4. Cameron Allonby

    This down under report is provided by Jeremiah Dyan Dean.

    Thats Entertainment!

    Undergound music label, Stone's Throw is celebrating their ten year anniversary with a double CD. The full Stone' Throw catalog will be represented giving you a varitable cornucopia of head noddin tunes. You can pick it up via itunes or buy the real plastic at your local "We dont give a shit about mainstream" music retailer. Holla!
    Disc 1:
    1. Jaylib - The Red
    2. Peanut Butter Wolf - In Your Area feat. Planet Asia
    3. Quasimoto - Low Class Conspiracy
    4. Madvillain - America's Most Blunted
    5. J Dilla - Two Can Win
    6. Wildchild - Knicknack feat. Percee P and M.E.D.
    7. Cut Chemist & M.E.D. - Blind Man
    8. Fabulous Souls - Take me
    9. Co-Real Artists - What about you?
    10. Charizma & PB Wolf - My World Premiere (12 Version)
    11. M.E.D. - Bang Ya Head
    12. Oh No - Move Pt. 2, feat. J Dilla and Roc C
    13. Madlib - The Payback
    14. Dudley Perkins - Falling
    15. Kazi - A.v.e.r.a.g.e.
    16. Koushik - Be With
    17. Yesterdays New Quintet - Sunrays
    18. Aloe Blacc - Arrive
    19. Madvillain - Figaro (Madlib Remix)
    20. Homeliss Derelix - Survivin' the Game
    21. Lootpack - Whenimondamic
    22. Gary Wilson - Gary's in the park
    23. Stark Reality - Comrades & Dreams
    (Wolf's Stones Throw 101 mix)
    24. Mr. Magic - Coast to Coast (Edan Edit)
    25. Funkaho - Bootay

    Disc 2:
    1. J Rocc - Stones Throw Ten Years Mix

    In literary news, Chuck Palahniuk of Fight Club fame, is realeasing his 10th book entitled "Rage: An Oral Biography of Buster Casey" on the first of May. Those of you familiar with his words can appreciate the time it takes him to write and release each novel.
    His last book that I read "Choke" depicts a young man who pretends to choke in well-to-do restaurants just to have other patrons save his life, sort of speak. By doing this he gives these patrons a feeling of excitement as they save a human life. He also gains their trust through this, giving him the ability to pin sob stories of his life upon them as he casually asks them for money for his unpaid "bills" at the anniversary of each life saving date. Pretty ballsy, right? He then begins to believe he is the ancient ancestor of the "Jesus", yes that right I said "the" Jesus. Good book.

    In event news, the cats over at Okayplayer and Waxpoetics are putting together a tribute event for the late great, J Dilla titled "Donuts are Forever". The party will be held at Galapagos Art Space in Willamsburg, Brooklyn. Admission is free but all donations will be given to Ms. Maureen Yancy, so dig deep! A crate full of DJs will be on hand in two different rooms spinning tunes and the infamous Pharoahe Monch will be on hand making sure that the evenings festivities move with flow. D-Day is February 10th, so you have plenty of warning to get the greyhound warmed up and help pay tribute to one of Brooklyns finest.


    Return of the Mack

    Nicolas Vouilloz, name ring a bell? He has announced that he will be gracing us with his presence at the World Cup Series for 2007. He won the Downhill Mountain Bike World Championships ten times, starting as a junior in 1992 and finishing his career with his 10th victory in 2002, only placing lower in 1991. He also won the World cup several times and over ten WC races. So in short, homeboy can pedal! He has currently been racing the Megavalanche Series and doing quite well. It will be interesting to see how he contends amongst peers that have continued to compete in the sport. Not to mention some of the advances in the technology and course design. Steve, Sam, Greg, Cedric and Nathan you all have got a few months to get your shit together. And as for you Nico, you better bring the noise because like Steve once said "I love beatin those skin-suit wearin faggots" and he means it!

    Burger King to sponsor Michal Prokop?

    Well not really, but he was just crowned King of Czech Cycling for 2006. He will follow in the footsteps of other great Czech cyclists such as...shit I don't know but I'm sure they just don't hand that kind of thing out. I mean look at the friggin crown for christs sake its huge. Good job my European friend.


    The Analogy-of-the-Day award is once again given to White House Press Secretary Tony Snow. For this “gem”.

    When asked if President Bush’s coming State of the Union address, which he has now read, was any good, Snow said, "yes, of course, it's good." What's the best part? "You know, it's difficult to say," he said, with a laugh. "It's like looking in a drawer full of diamonds."

    He was previously given this prestigious award for his statement a few months back when he retorted "Have you been smoking rope?"


    Scott is dating Sam

    I say that "Scott is dating Sam" because at his level Sam does not just lay down with anyone. “The fit and the comfort of Scott goggles is really nice, I was immediately happy with it,” remarked Hill. “Scott has been very supportive throughout the change and I look forward to a great season with them.” Maybe they will try getting him on the bike? Todd and the boys at Iron-Donkey will have to do some real persuasive serenading to keep the Aussie. Love is in the air.


    Lets not forget about the big bikes.

    For those of you without a proper understanding of the skill it takes to race motocross competitivly, check this out.
    Thanks again Alex
    MXDN 06

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    Neethling extras from Earthed 4

    Thanks Alex
    Neethling Earthed 4 Extras

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    The nerds have done it again.

    Apple released its new "Iphone" with music and video capabilities running OSX.
    The phones service will be managed by Cingular and they are looking to release it to the hounds in June. There will be two models 4gb at $499 and 8gb at $599. The phone boasts no external buttons a simple touch screen allows you to navigate through all the available functions and features. Proximity sensors in the phone turn the touch screen off while the phone rests next to your ear. An ambient light sensor monitors just that, while adjusting its backlight. Another sensor is able to determine what position the phone is in, landscape or portait. Well Mr. Jobs from the sound of it, it seems you are ready to play with the big boys. Well see how long you can hang.


    Athertons join Commencal

    Fresh off the rumor mill is that the trio of Athertons will be flying the Commencal flag for 2007.

    Good news: Arrival of the ATHERTONS in the COMMENCAL family!

    The year 2007 is starting out strong at COMMENCAL! We are extremely happy to announce that, as of the 1st of January, the Atherton family is joining our ranks. Rachel, Dan and Gee have been sought out by our MADISON, our UK distributor, to ride for the ANIMAL-COMMENCAL Team.

    The newbie’s will be riding alongside Cedric GRACIA, our number 1 rider, in the World Cup events. The high point of this season will be the World Championships held at Fort William from the 3-9th of September, 2007. The motivation of the home riders will be higher than ever, but CG is a man not to be forgotten, particularly as some of his best runs have been done there these past few years. We can’t help it, but we have visions of a podium that is mainly COMMENCAL…
    But let’s try and keep our wheels on the ground, because the season is long. From now until then CG and the Atherton brothers will be participating in all the World Cup events, at the Sea Otter, at the Crankworx Festival as well as numerous Red Bull events.