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  1. #1
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    Race on my GT Sensor, or spend extra for new HT?

    I'm new to xc racing (never raced before). I raced cross country and track for 4 years in college, so I am in decent aerobic shape (ran 70-80 miles per week for 4 years). Last spring I had a knee injury which will prevent me from running, so I'd like to start racing xc bikes.

    Right now I have a GT Sensor 3.0, which I'm extremely happy with. I've ridden Porcupine Rim, Amasa Back, Slickrock etc. and it has done great. (I live in Moab..)

    What are your thoughts on racing this bike? It's a small so is probably about 30 lbs. I was considering spending about $600-800 for a basic hardtail to use as a trainer/racer.. Planning on riding every day in the winter here to get ready for spring racing. I have time to ride 1-2 hours after work M-F, and 6 hours+ on Sat/Sun. I was thinking about putting that money into my Sensor... but I use it pretty much as an all-mountain bike here. So I don't now if that is a good idea.

    I'm used to running, where your equipment doesn't matter at all. Seems like having the right bike could make a big difference. Obviously you can race on anything, but I'm willing to spend a little money to set myself up a little, if necessary. Thanks.

  2. #2
    It's about showing up.
    Reputation: Berkeley Mike's Avatar
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    Your competitve CC experience will be a great asset but racing XC is not like riding around just as CC racing is not like running around. With respect there is much to learn.

    Race the GT until you get a feel for the event and see what people are riding. Tune it sweet and keep her sharp and you will be ahead of the game.

    That said, if you just want to get a new bike, go nuts. It is just that it is not the most important thing right now.

    Good luck.
    I don't rattle.

  3. #3
    mnoutain bkie rdier
    Reputation: rydbyk's Avatar
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    hmm

    YOU:

    I'm used to running, where your equipment doesn't matter at all. Seems like having the right bike could make a big difference. Obviously you can race on anything, but I'm willing to spend a little money to set myself up a little, if necessary. Thanks.

    ME:

    I am sorta with Berkeley Mike on this one. You do have to understand that bikes are just plain expensive. Running is super duper cheap and simple. You are looking for a bike that is at the $600-ish price range. If you can find one that reliably shifts/doesn't have crap on it that will easily break and leave you stranded 20 miles from your car, then go for it...

    When purchasing new, imo, you will need to spend arnd $1100 to $1500 to get the bike I mentioned above WITH a decent suspension fork (hardtail).

    Most people who are new to cycling have no comprehension with regards to how much we actually end up spending on bikes. At my local race series, it is EXTREMELY common to see people riding around on $3500+++ bikes. It is so common, that you kinda stop paying attention to it all after awhile..

    So...what does a $3500+++ bike have that the $1100 to $1500 bike does NOT?

    1. complete build will be MUCH lighter (most will agree that it is better to lose 5 lbs off your gut if you can BEFORE spending a ton to lose that from your bike..)
    2. much better wheelset (where MOST people try to save weight bec. it is rotational and matters more performance-wise than..say..frame weight (non-rotational) does...
    3. better/lighter/stiffer and more tunable front fork/shock
    4. most likely carbon frame (light and more forgiving usually than aluminum)
    5. faster/more precise/more reliable shifting

    Does this all matter? Like you said, you can race on anything (as long as it shifts well and won't break) and still do well if you are really fit, but if you are racing against people with the EXACT SAME FITNESS AND BIKE HANDLING SKILLS then you will be at a small disadvantage not having items 1-5 imo.


    .02

  4. #4
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    Thanks for the serious/helpful advice. Sounds like the best plan right now is bust out a lot of quality training for the winter, try a couple races, then re-evaluate

  5. #5
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    Don't underestimate your fitness though. A regional JR here, who is a 3X cyclocross national champ (and now a first year U23) used to train for cross by running cross country and racing his cross bike on weekends. Now he had ridden MTB for quite some time, but the xc running gave him the fitness to be a National Champ (along with the racing on weekends). Did not touch the bike during the week until running season was over.
    Thanks to www.weavercycleworks.com for my awesome bike frames!

  6. #6
    is turning a big gear
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    OP- the sensor will be fine to race. Throw some faster tires on and it will feel like a whole new bike.
    Get it unlocked.

  7. #7
    It's about showing up.
    Reputation: Berkeley Mike's Avatar
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    I don't mean to say that you can't buy a few goodies.
    I don't rattle.

  8. #8
    no excuses
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    I currently race a sensor pro 9r and doing well with it. I changed tires, wheels, bars, grips, seat and seat post just for my preference. I have raced in on tight twisty and flowing hilly single track. Come close to getting the holeshot both races and the bike just rocks.

    Put good racing tires on it based on your trail types and train and you will be fine.
    2011 GT Sensor 29r Pro
    Fox Racing
    Don Johle's Bike World

  9. #9
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    Reputation: Spinning Lizard's Avatar
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    The Sensor is a great pedaling bike, would have no problem racing that bike.

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