John is a long time friend of Saffron and to Matthew having raced together in South Africa.
Racing has remained a big part of John’s life since those days and today he’s a Managing Partner of performance coaching company @science2sport as well as Coach and Head of Performance Testing for world tour team UAE Team Emirates.
This bike was designed to allow John to get out and explore all of the excellent gravel routes surrounding Girona, in the north east of Spain. Surface and terrain vary but there are a lot of fine gravel trails and fire roads, some a little rocky but mostly dry and dusty.
Our aim was to keep it fast, keep it fun. The bike would be just as at home on the roads leading out of town as on the trails.
We didn’t need to use huge tyres or keep space for mud clearance so we kept it tight and not too slack, opting for the nice short Futura Gravel Fork from Columbus and the top shelf, shaped Spirit HSS tubing also from Columbus in Italy, a similar tube selection as we use in our signature Strive road frames which offers a great balance of weight and stiffness.
As on many of our road bikes, our carbon seat tube sheds some weight and adds some flexibility into the frame to absorb vibrations from rough terrain and stop that being transmitted into the saddle.
For a cable groupset, we kept it super clean with internal routing for both brake and gears through the downtube and the oversize T47 BB shell, into the respective chainstays.
The paint scheme for this bike was extremely important for us to get right with the idea for this bike being to honour John’s father.
The scheme is based on his tattoos which he says “was done to illustrate my fathers struggle with cancer and echos some demons I too, have been fighting.”
Campagnolo Ekar 1×13
Campagnolo Shamal Carbon, Pirelli Cinturato Gravel H
Columbus Futura Gravel
Chris King Inset 8
Deda Superzero, PRO Discover