Eliot Jackson’s Giant Glory | Pro Bike Chat

Eliot Jackson’s Giant Glory | Pro Bike Chat


– So here we are in the Giant pits, we’ve got Eliot Jackson, and
this is his 2019 Giant Glory. Shall we get into it? – We should, I think
we’re already into it. – I think we’re very into it! Let’s get out of it. (smooth breakbeat jazz music) So the big difference
between this years bike and last years bike is
obviously Fox suspension. Now for an average Joe Bloggs like me, I put a few PSIs in, do
a bounce on the car park, but I only go into the woods
to case jumps and drag brakes A rider like yourself,
how much setup goes into a bike like this? – I think you just
described my off-season. (laughing) No, it’s funny because I rode Fox before, and I think a lot of people would be like oh I just set it up the
same, but every year you have different tracks,
riding style changes a bit, bike’s different a little bit,
so it’s not that you start from scratch but you kind
of start from scratch, so that’s just been us
over the off season just getting ready, getting comfortable,
seeing what it’s doing, Fox has made a lot of
innovations since we were gone or since I was gone so, – And have you been
speaking to Fox or working with Fox, testing, or
have you just kind of got a good base setting through
your own riding and whatnot. – Yeah I think that’s
one of the things that makes Fox unique is that they
do have a huge race program, like Jordi Cortes, the
puzzler himself. (laughs) He’s the one to, I would
call him and be like yo my bike is not working
or it’s not doing this or whatever and he’ll
tell me to do some clicks and it’ll work again,
same here like in Rotorua there’s Peter and all those dudes are here so I can just go down and. – It must be great to have someone you can bounce ideas off like that. – Yeah it’s good and it,
they’re professionals (laughs) you know what I mean
like I don’t have to be – Just hold on harder. – Yeah I don’t have to be
like I think that’s a click of rebound and they’re
like no that’s not right. – And are you running, is a
grip two dampener I presume? How do you like that? – It’s interesting to have the
high and low speed rebound, – Yeah I was gonna say that yeah. – Yeah I haven’t really
had a chance to really mess with that but I think
it is an interesting thing, because the fork doesn’t
have linkage you don’t have that progressiveness which
is something that the spacers in the fork kind of help you deal with, but then a lot of the
time if you add spacers and you get a really
fast rebound from the, once you get low into the travel, so having high speed rebound
would help to kind of control that which is
really cool I think that’s a really nice innovation from Fox. – So this bike here is actually running a full Shimano Drivetrain, Shimano brakes, Maxxis tires, which is real departure from just a few years ago when
you were on the SRAM program, have you noticed those kind
of paper cut changes or is it something that’s been
brought kind of incrementally so you’ve just adapted it as you’ve gone? – Yeah I think, you know
it’s interesting because SRAM 2017 that was the
first time I had done that, and you do but you get
used to it really quickly, it’s kind of one of those
things where it’s like the first time the levers
feels weird, you might have to adjust your modulation a bit, and then by the end of the
day you’re kind of like cool. A brakes a brake a little bit. – And in terms of cockpit you run a Pro, Pro components, Shimano’s own brand, is that something you feel
is really nice, kind of like a one stop shop for all your Shimano needs do you know what I mean,
and it must be really easy, from the past trying to order
parts when you’re ordering it from a lot of different
brands, it can kind of be a bit frustrating in a way,
delivery times and stuff, but just going to one
brand, does that help or? – Yeah it was nice this
year because, like you said the delivery times, so
our bikes got built up, all at the same time,
everyone had their parts at the same time, we got to
get on the bikes a little bit earlier than I think we have
in the past, which is great. And then like I was saying
just like being able to be on Shimano when you
have consistency like that, the handlebars and the stem
and brakes are all developed to work together so it does – And is that something
you experiment with like width of bar or
do you kind of set now and you’ve had it for the last
couple of years or whatnot and you just kind of go into it. – I don’t I think there’s
kind of a limit to what I just take that out of
it, you know what I mean you could test and do a
bunch of different stuff, like a mil here, a degree here but like, I just kind of run the bars. – But it’s perhaps kind
of a double edged sword in terms of setup because some
people are chasing something so elusive that actually
it undoes them you know? And being quite happy with,
not run what you brung, you want an element of seeking,
but you know what I mean? – I mean like, I think
it’s one of those things I know Shimano, the
parts on my bike are able to win a race, you know, and so like, is it really gonna give me
that much more of an advantage to be, it needs to be rolled
back and then I need this bar width and then I need
22.5 millimeters off the bike you know what I mean, I know
they’re world class parts and it’s just getting it
kind of comfortable to me I don’t have to try to
eek out performance. – So on your bike, I’ve
noticed you’re running a full chain guide, alloy
rims, you look to have kind of a pretty stock
standard cassette on there, it seems like it’s a very,
a bike that would run no matter what, have you
ever ventured and tried carbon rims, and I see some
people even on world cups losing that lower which
you know, I don’t know I always figured more
security’s a better thing but, is that something
you’ve experimented with? Or are you just settled
on this and thought, – You know it’s interesting is, I set up my bike for like every situation, like when you were saying
that, I like to run the full cassette
because when I’m at home, it’s nice to pedal, I
run the full chain guide because it’s more consistent,
you don’t have to worry about it breaking or anything like
that when you’re in the middle of a race run, the alloy wheels, we, you know it’s kind of, it’s
something that you could test for us, and like I said
the traction’s a huge thing so with the alloy wheels
you’re always gonna get a little bit more flex, you’re
always gonna get a little bit more traction, a little bit more give, we have gone to wider rims
over the past couple years, and that’s something that
helps with the, kind of with that consistency, you
don’t have to worry about, – And is there an insert in there? – No I haven’t run an insert. – I’ve heard the argument
with alloy rims that sometimes the CushCore upon impact
would actually flare out. The rim really doesn’t
want to be pushed like that and especially with that core suspension, I’ve heard of, maybe yeah performance wise it’s not the holy grail it’s
actually stressing the rim in a way that perhaps it
doesn’t want, you know? – I mean that’s interesting,
it’s funny because maybe because I like my
bike so much, I haven’t even a lot of this stuff I
haven’t even thought of. – Well that’s a pretty good place to be. – Yeah like, I have never
been like ah I wish I had an insert in there, I’m just like oh this is news tell me more! – Yeah yeah totally. – So I think that’s kind
of where I’m at like. Other than suspension and the Shimano which was a big change, my bike
setup hasn’t really changed from the past, over the past three years, I’ve kind of just been
like little refinements and you go down one street,
look for some performance and you maybe hit a dead
end and you go back, and so I feel like I’ve kind
of done that on every part of this bike, and this is kind
of what I’ve ended up with. – And so what makes this your glory? Could you pick out a line up do you think? I noticed you have the
forks slammed down low is that something you’ve
may have even come from moto you want a high end or do you just, – Yeah I run a little bit,
I run the bars a little bit lower than most people, like
a lot of people you’ll see who’ll run the spacer
here, so I run a little bit lower bars but try to keep
it a little bit slack, and we do run, we’re
running the straight crowns right now we’re not
running the drop ones so a lot of people that you
see with a lot space there will run the drops, and then
I think the thing that you always will notice about my
bike is that the seat’s high. – Well I’ll be. – I think that’s more from like
laziness, like it got put up in a stand one time,
and then I was just like it’s really nice to pedal around. – Rumor has it this is
the same bike used in the turbo train in the off season. – Totally. – Same thing.
– For sure. – Just dual ply tires
just churning through ’em. And Giant being what is,
I suppose it takes quite a conservative approach to
bikes, they didn’t immediately hop between wheel sizes early on. Are you gonna try sticking
a 29 on the front? You say like high front
end I mean this will just get that sky high. – I know I feel like I would
like, I’d love to try it it’s one of those things
though, going back to going down the rabbit hole, I’ve ridden
this bike, like this year all of sudden people are like
oh I need the 29 front wheel and you weren’t thinking
about that last year so it’s like this is my bike,
I love it, it’s set up right I’m comfortable on it,
so, and it’s not made for that you know? – It’s quite a refreshing
attitude though, just you know that run what you’ve brung,
it doesn’t become an undoing of something and that’s I
guess perhaps not by choice but people who ride bikes
at home that’s often kind of the corner they’re in, oh
you’ve just gotta ride a bike and enjoy it and once you’re
kind of free of the other stuff you might be able to enjoy a bit more. – And like I said it’s not like
I’m, it’s a world class bike – All class leading. – Totally, like capable of
winning races and so it’s not like I’m like oh this
is all I have, it’s like this is all I have this
is sweet! (laughing) I’m stoked on it, right? – Because I guess the
giant has actually been in this kind of iteration
for a few years now, but I supposed that’s off
the merit of designing a bike that when it came out it was actually, really quite progressive, and
it still sits in the middle of the band now, I’m sure
you could quote off the top of your head but was it a 470 reach? – Yeah 470.
– Yeah 470 sounds right yeah. And think, but it wasn’t,
now actually it shows just kind of on the money they were
because now bike designers almost now it’s quite center
ground, full center reach I think 440 or 440 (mumbles) but I’m not sure that’s
only off the top of my head. – It is I think like that’s
one of those things where you have to decide
between do I want to try to chase something or do I
wanna build a platform that we can kind of adapt
that you can get used to like we know the riders are
capable and comfortable on it and so I think it’s really
about when you make a change really knowing that that
change is gonna do well rather than just being like oh we need to put out a new bike because, – It’s Tuesday, let’s urrr – Totally, and they’re
really good about that so. – And you stick to the coil throughout, I notice you’re running coil on DVO and you’re running a Vivid
beforehand, have you experimented with the Fox or do you feel
like the Giant Maestro system works best for the coil? – I feel really comfortable
when I have traction. I mean I guess that’s an
obvious thing to say but a lot of people are different,
a lot of people feel more comfortable when they have support which is like an air shock, so I might run it a little bit softer,
like the coil for me is off the top like an off-camber
or like over some bumps or whatever, like that makes me confident is just having to know my back
wheel is not gonna slide so. – I’ve noticed as well
you’re running the HT X2 downhill race pedals, and you’ve
got these little scrubbers there I mean I guess anything
that’s gonna increase platform or, because you
are especially when you’re going through something
rough, you’re feeling blind, and sometimes that first
lip of the pedal, you know. Does that help locate? – That was like, HT has done
some cool iterations where they have a ramp in the
back now and then a ramp in the front because
like you said when you put your foot out, come down
a rough section or whatever a lot of the time you’re
not perfect which is maybe most of the time,
and so you might not get it first time but
with the ramps you can kind of just slide your foot
back or slide your foot up, which is really nice. This is probably the easiest pedal I’ve had to get into and out of. – And you’re running the
big brakes front and back. I saw actually speaking
of your friends at Fox, that thing on YouTube
where they’re discussing the merits of a 180 disc at
back or, do you always just run a 200 out back? – Yeah, I’ve never tried a smaller rotor. – I guess coming from moto
that’s, they’ve got engine braking as well, which
is quite a big factor. – For me too I think I really
like a brake to just bite, like just barely touching
it I want it to like lock up the wheel, I don’t like to
have a lot of modulation, so – I like mine like that just
because to keep me off them. I guess we do it for different reasons. I just feel if I know where it is I’ll go oh steady on son, just not
grabbing fist fulls of brake all the time, cool, cool, cool, cool. Cool, cool, cool. And do you know if you’re running the organic or the sintered? – I run the organic because
you get a lot initial bite with those, you might
lose a little bit of power at the end of a gnarly, you
know Val Di Sole run, you might switch it up with that and then also in the mud we end up
maybe running the sintered I always call them steel. (laughing) But yeah that would be the
only time, less for feel and more for conditions. – So Eliot thank you very
much for talking us through your bike, best of luck this weekend. – Thank you. – If you wanna check out
another downhill bike and see Blake’s Canyon Sender, click here. – And if you wanna know
what to look for for tires click here. – Thanks man.