i was wondering if the ion st is downhill race only or whether it would stand up to some freeride as well?
Originally Posted by wazar
Beyond what I write now, I'd suggest reading my thread called 'Paul's Ion', but you've probably read that already. I don't go much into how much of a 'freeride bike' it is, but I do hint at that it's more than a downhill race bike only. I certainly won't/don't use it as a downhill bike only. I've two bikes: a little jump/4X/trail bike and my Ion. I go through phases of liking one more than the other, so subsequently one will always get a little less use for a while. I've ridden a little 4X on my Ion, a little slalom, and just generally played around on it at a woodland 'bike park' that we've got about an hour's drive outside of London. Sure, it's not the most nimble thing over skinnies or you'd not seriously consider using it all day on some single track, and I'd not like to ride it up hill, but I'd say you could use it in an Alp's bike park or on short downhill tracks rather than just on kick-arse World Cup style tracks. But if you want something that you can use all day and will ride up hill, then look elsewhere. It jumps better than you might expect of a 'race bike' - in fact, I think it jumps amazingly, so I can just get stuck on a little hip jump for an hour and just hit it repeatedly without thinking, "I'd like something a little more freeride orientated". But at the end of the day, it is generally what it says it is, a downhill bike. I used to ride an Orange 224, which took a certain style of jumping to get used to, so I'm not sure that anyone could get on the Ion and tabletop it or throw down whips. Perhaps because of my 224 I'm used to riding a pain-in-the-arse bike in the air so get on with the Ion pretty well when in flight.
Best I can say, mate