XC Tire for Mud...maybe
OK ladies and gentleman!
Coming up in October is a 6-hour endurance race in the beautiful mountains of Georgia. I'm racing team and expect we'll turn 1 for 1 laps. The course is about 5 miles and should take God willing under 30 minutes to click off.
I am running a 4" full suspension bike currenlty equipped with Kenda Nevegal 2.1 Tubless tires. I run 29 in the rear and 25 in the front ...there, about or around.
I've had good experiences with these tires...they roll pretty well, climb, and corner OK. The only complaint I have, if you can call it a complaint is I experience a little "push" coming out of turns...but this may be because of riding style. I've ridden hardtail most of my life and have the habit of getting out of the saddle and mashing out of turns.
I ran this race last year with Nevegals...it rained up until the morning of the race and the ground was soaked. Lots of mud! Again, the Nevegals did just fine but I am searching for something more...
Thoughts on tires for an October race in wet Georgia clay and mud?
I am thinking Kenda Karma 2.0 ...running the DTC tire with Stan's so I can run lower pressures. I'm looking for less rolling resistance, less weight but I don't want to risk a muddy nightmare... I don't like falling!
The course has some roots, rocks...typical, but nothing extraordinary. I need to shave a couple of minutes off my lap time and I'm looking to tires for my solution.
I love my Maxxis Meusas in 1.9 for mud. They cut through the surface slop very quickly to find grip underneath
New MTB XC Racer
I am fairly new to racing(2 and a bit years) but my two tires of choice are the Nevegal and the Karma.
I'm on a 4" FS @ 145lbs. Run Tubes. Karma 2.0 @ around 28F/30R and Nev's 2.1 25F/23R
Both have great traction on rocks and hard pack. When it starts to get wet and slimy you will get a lot less traction on clay/dirt sections on the Karma compared to the Nevs. I also have yet to flat in a race on the Nev running the low pressure I am running. Flatted about 5 times on the Karma. Did about twice as many races on the Karmas though. All pinch flats.
I just did a 24 hr race Solo so I saw lots of riders on many different tires over the race. It rained just enough to keep it quite slick in sections for the first 16 hr or so. I ran the Nevegals and I was clearing everything even while quite tired while I passed many who were walking sections that where on 4-5 man teams.
I think if its going to be muddy you would be better off on the Nevegals personally. If you are a skilled rider and its not too slick you still may do well on the Karma. I was trying to get my hands on some Maxxis Medusa for the 24 but it didn't happen.Maybe others can suggest a better mud tire than the Nev.
The Karma is more of a race tire so you sacrifice some traction and flat protection for speed. It will always be a gamble when you run more race specific tires. If you flat you will loose more time than on a slower fatter tire for sure.
I would say that even on a 24 hr race it would be hard to make up the time of one flat vs tire rolling resistance, but thats just a guess
Bottom line is racing and MTB'ing is fun. Make your decision, learn from it, but have fun
If the course ends up being quite muddy, Georgia-clay-style, the Maxxis Medusas or something similar will be a good bet. With mud like that, your tires are going to pack up regardless of what you run, so a small (1.9) tire with widely-spaced spikes is a good idea - it will shed better than anything else, and when it does pack up, there will be space for the mud between your tires and frame/fork.
If the course isn't all that muddy and is just damp, try out the Maxxis ADvantage or Ignitor. The Ignitor has great grip in lots of conditions, but will pack out easily in thick mud, which is why you shouldn't use it in really sticky mud situations. Same with the ADvantage.
Other than that, I'll echo the post above - just go out and have fun!
In michigan I've used Karma and Nevegal with very positive results, especially if running tubeless.
"You have a Ph.d in Economics yet you're such an idiot sometimes." - My ex-wife.
You talking about the dirty spokes race? I thought this thing was like 8 miles or so...whats the deal?
Originally Posted by Johnny K