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Ridley develops new X-Night cyclocross bike for World Championship in Louisville

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Test of the new Ridley X-Night resulted in three wins and the Belgian national championship

On January 13, 2013, Klaas Vantornout became the new Belgium champion cyclocross. "We are very happy for Klaas especially since hardly anyone expected him to win, and we are even more happy that his victory was the third one on a bike which we gave to him and his team mate Kevin Pauwels for testing", says Jochen Bessemans, PR & Marketing Manager of Ridley Bikes. The bike in question is the new Ridley X-Night which weighs over 500 grams less than the version used by professional riders up until now, and will be available at Ridley dealers in May.

For years the Ridley X-Night has unquestionably been one of the best bikes for cyclocross. This is illustrated by the fact that in the last 11 years 7 world champions rode a Ridley - the X-Night or its predecessor. Jochen Bessemans: "year after year we improve our road and cyclocross bikes by taking into account the feedback of our professional riders. Furthermore, our engineers are constantly looking for evolutions in either discipline which can prove useful in the other one. This has led to the introduction of stiffness to weight features used on the Helium SL road bike to lower the weight of the X-Night. We also changed the geometry by lowering the bottom bracket by 3 mm and by lowering the head tube."

As a result, the new frame is 350 grams lighter than its predecessor, while the profit on the entire bike is over 500 grams by using internal cable routing for both mechanical and electronic shifting. "In cyclocross this makes quite a difference, especially since we often have to shoulder our bikes on obstacles like staircases or when running through heavy sandy strips like the one where I secured my win in the Belgian national Championship", says Klaas Vantornout.

"Over the last couple of years cyclocross has become a lot more professional when it comes to the preparation of the courses, which has led to an increase in the average speed. As a result the differences between cyclocross and road racing are less outspoken than they used to be", says Jochen Bessemans. "For this reason, and after consulting the professional teams we support, we slightly adapted the geometry of the X-Night. We lowered the head tube and the bottom bracket a bit, closer to the geometry used on a road bike. A 27,2mm carbon seat post absorbs vibrations, which helps prevent fatigue. The rear fork has been redesigned to prevent the accumulation of mud, and we have increased the stiffness of the bottom bracket and the head tube."


Six races, three victories

Ridley initially planned to launch the new Ridley X-Night at the World Championship in Louisville (US) on February 3, 2013. To ensure the bike was ready for the job, Klaas Vantornout and Kevin Pauwels were asked to seriously test the new X-Night during training at the end of 2012.

Klaas Vantornout: "Both Kevin and I were so impressed this new bike that we decided to already start using it at the World Cup race of December 26 in Heusden-Zolder (Belgium)." Since then not only did Vantornout become Belgian Champion on the new Ridley X-Night, his team mate Pauwels also won the "Grote Prijs Sven Nys" in Baal (Belgium) and the World Cup Race in Rome (Italy). Two heavily contended races under very different conditions (heavy mud and hilly terrain in Baal versus the very fast and flat track in Rome).

"We couldn't hope for better proof that our new X-Night gives our riders just that little extra which is needed to win races or become a national champion", says Jochen Bessemans.

The NEW X-Night will be available at Ridley dealers in May.

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