Bikes Of The Great British Divide 2023

Bikes Of The Great British Divide 2023

2 August, 2023

The Great British Divide is one of the longest off-road races on the UK race scenes. Traversing the UK over 2000km, this race is in its third year and shows no sign of slowing down.

Follow the commentary here.

Craig Black

Name: Craig Black

Age: 52

Location: Newport on Tay

Bike: 2015 Merida Big 9 - 1000. Shimano XT Di2 with XT brakes. Scribe All Mountain Carbon Wheelset with Maxxis Ardent tubeless tyres. Magic shine front and rear lights and an £8 saddle off Ali Express.

Key items of kit: Bags are a mix of Blackburn and Restrap with a Restrap musette for resupply. Paria gravel kit with loads of pockets in jersey and shorts. Garmin 1040 solar and Wahoo Roam for backup will take care of navigation. Couple of 20000mah power banks will hopefully keep everything going for a while. 4L Cranktank inspired by Joe Nation for all my hydration goodness.

Paul Coats

Name: Paul Coats

Age: 55

Location: Glasgow

Bike: S-Works Epic hard tail. SRAM AXS eTAP groupset. 32 X 10-50. Redshift "kitchen sink" drop bar. Syncros Silverton 1.0 wheelset. Continental RaceKing tyres 2.25.

Key items of kit: Tailfin rack and bag. Son deluxe dynamo, lights and charge. Terra Nova Laser 1 tent instead of bivvi...think the weather ain't going to be kind. And midge escape. Lots of socks.

James Hinsby

Name: James Hinsby

Age: 51

Location: Austria

Bike: KTM Scarp MT

Key items of kit: A once light weight, versatile marathon race bike - Converted to a long distance comfort machine that is now heavy as......!!! A mish mash of parts done on a bike packing budget. Comfort and rolling resistance is key, So Schwalble Hurricane 2.4'' tyres are a new venture. Bags are mostly cheap, so supported with extra strapping to help carry the weight. Running SRAM ASX - so no cables to cease up in wet weather, but extra battery and charger required and if that Mech hanger bends then it all gets rather clunky. A power meter helps keep watt averages low, and hopefully long endurance back to back days high. The bar ends are so 1990, but wonderful when standing up on climbs.

Daniel Krause

Name: Daniel Krause

Age: 33

Cap number: Daniel

Location: Koblenz (Germany)

Bike: "The Misery Machine" Ghost RoadRage Al frame; SRAM Force1; 11-42t cassette, 34t oval chainring by Garbaruk; TRP Spyre brakes; Rockshox RUDY suspension fork; BBB cycling actionpost; Terry Fly Arteria saddle; Vittoria Mezcal 44x700c tubeless with 2 Tubolito tubes as backup

Key items of kit: AGU bags and Bib shorts; POC Lamina Hipbag; OR Helium Bivi; Alpin Loacker Down Pro 3 Season sleeping bag; Therm-a-rest NeoAir Xlite nxt; 2 powerbanks with 30Ah and 10Ah; Gamin Edge 520; Sawyer Mini waterfilter

Wayne Ardley

Name: Wayne Ardley

Age: 51

Location: Newbury, UK

Bike: Giant Fathom 29 1 2021 ALUXX SL-Grade Aluminum Fork – Giant Crest 34 RCL 130mm travel Handlebar - Nukeproof Horizon V2 Carbon Riser Bar 35mm Handlebar extension – Keenso Al Alloy bar(Amazon find) Grips - Ergon GA3 Mountain Bike Handlebar Grips Saddle – Specialized Power Comp with MIMC and Brand-X Stubby Bar End Dropper post – Giant Contact 30.9 Chain - SRAM XX1 Eagle 12 Speed Chain (Black) SRAM Eagle GX AXS, Rear Cassette 10:52 T, Front chain ring 32T Peddles - DMR V12 Magnesium Flat Pedals Wheels – MASON x HUNT 29 MTB Dynamo wheel set Mud guard - Crud Front XL Fender Tyres – Vittoria Mezcal 3 G2.0 TNT 29X2.35 Lights – Exposure Revo dynamo light and RedEye Mk2 Rear light, Exposure Strada, Zecto rear light Bags – Tailfin Alloy rack, AP20 bag & 5l panniers. Apidura bags and food bags, LifeLine Tool Storage Bottle Electrical - Sinewave Revolution, Anker battery, Garmin Edge 1040 Solar GPS Cycle Computer

Key items of kit: Camping – Alpkit Aeronaut 1 tent, Thermarest Neoair XLite mat, FLEXTAILGEAR Tiny Pump (pumps mat and tent up), Peter Hutchinson Designs Ltd (PHD) Minimus sleeping bag(good down to 5C@465grams), Aeros Ultralight Pillow, MSR PocketRocket 2, Endura GV500 Waterproof Jacket, FS260-Pro Adrenaline Waterproof 3/4 , SealSkinz socks, Giro Latch MTB Cycling Shoes, Endura Xtract Lite Bib Shorts, Buff, Smidge Midge head net(for those Scottish nasties), Water to Go Bottle for water purification, Quad lock phone mount, Bell, Garmin Instinct solar watch, retractable cable lock, whistle, Hi Viz Gilet, tools and 1st aid kit

James McIntosh

Name: James McIntosh

Age: 39

Location: Cornwall

Bike: BMC Team Elite

Key items of kit: Lots of squishy bits on bike (and rider!). Lauf forks, redshift stem and rear elastomer. Down coat and trouser with bivy bag for sleeping.

TT bars and bag for food. 3L water bladder plus 800ml bottle. Son dynamo and Sinwave beacon for lights and charging.

Dale Barrington

Name: Dale Barrington

Age: 64

Location: Twyford, Miraflores de la Sierra

Bike: Santa Cruz Blur, SRAM (31x11-52), Shimano, Time Atac, Hunt, Tioga, Ergo, Spirgrips, Spurcycle…

Key items of kit: Tailfin, Apidura, Decathlon, Nemo, Sea to Summit, Rohan, Assos, DHB, Giro, Garmin 1030, Minix, Nitecore,

Anthony Marvin

Name: Anthony Marvin

Age: 69

Location: Isle of Wight

Bike: Salsa Cutthroat put together by Woods Cyclery in Lyndhurst

Key items of kit: Key items of kit: Front end, Revelate Designs bags. Forks, Ortlieb bags. Top bar and rear, Tailfin bags and rack. In the middle, frame bag from Straight Cut Design.

Jason Fowler

Name: Jason Fowler

Age: 52

Location: Bury St Edmunds

Bike: Mondraker Podium carbon xc hardtail

Key items of kit: Tailfin top tube bag, downtube bag and fork brackets. Apidura seat bag. Alpkit bars with integrated bag, battery pack and bivvi bag. Altura frame bag stolen from gravel bike in the garage.! Exposure lights (six pack & Diablo). Vittoria Barzo tyres

Alex Kowalski

Name: Alex Kowalski

Age: 29

Location: Fayetteville, Arkansas

Bike: Why Cycles El Jefe 29er setup single speed with a 33x19 gear ratio. Hunt wheels with 2.35 vittoria barzo/mezcal combo. Step-cast fork with 120mm of squish, wide flat bars with bar ends and aero bars, brooks saddle and ti cranks.

Key items of kit: Dispersed bikepacking full top tube bag will be packed to the gills with fuel. Oveja negra seat post bag will carry sleep kit (or lack thereof), layers and rain gear. Oveja negra frame bag will carry tool kit, electronics, PROTEIN for recovery and an extra 1 liter water bladder/filter. Lil Revelate feed bag for random toiletries, sunscreen, lip balm etc. Pedal cell power generator will keep electronics charged and will hopefully limit unnecessary stops along route. Outbound lighting to light up the night sky. Shoutout to my great aunt Beryl!

Jon Shergold

Name: Jon Shergold

Age: 39

Cap number: Shergie

Location: South Wales

Bike: KTM Scarp Supreme, stock apart from Schwalbe tyres, a USE carbon post and MT Zoom bars.

Key items of kit: After many years I've dragged all of the old bikepacking gear out of the loft and remarkably it still works, well most of it…

Sleep system involves an inertia x-frame roll mat with a similarly scant down dag, an Alpkit tarp to try and keep some of the liquid sunshine at bay all carried in an ancient but oh so reliable revelate saddle bag. There's another Alpkit frame bag hidden above the BB with a Miss Grape Node bag on the top tube, both of these contain food, medical kit and other essentials. Out front is a Rapha bar bag that is accidentally matching orange, it has all the lighting and electronics running out of it. I've gone with cache batteries rather than a dynamo for this one as the average speed could be somewhat pedestrian and I'm not sure it'd keep everything going…

Alan Goldsmith

Name: Alan Goldsmith

Age: 59

Location: Wiltshire

Bike: Specialized Epic Evo, SRAM Eagle 30t x 10/50 gearing, Maxxis Ardent 2.25 inch tyres.

Key items of kit: Ortlieb seatpack and handlebar bag. Tailfin top tube pack x 2. Big Agnes Fly Creek UL1 tent, Exped Synmat, Rab Topbag sleeping bag. Garmin Etrex for Navigation. Woolie Boolie merino socks!

Jon Large

Name: Jon Large

Age: 55

Cap number: Jon

Location: Helmsley, North York Moors

Bike: Specialized Epic Evo Expert, Ergon grips, Profile Design aerobats with risers, Hope carbon seatpost as dropper broke on shakedown ride, Brooks B17 saddle, Son 28 dynamo, Exposure Revo/ RedEye lights.

Key items of kit: Wahoo Roam V2, MLD Cricket tarp and Event Soul bivy (down liner bag inside) + mat on front, Revelate Designs Mag Tank (electronics), Adipura feedbags x 2, Tailfin AeroPack (clothing and everything else) + tools repair and caldera cone stove on struts.

Sam Phillips

Name: Sam Phillips

Age: 21

Location: Hertfordshire, UK

Bike: Custom built Sonder Dial. 12 Speed XT Drivetrain with XT 4 pot Brakes. Rockshox SID Ultimate Charger RLC. WTB KOM Tough rim with SON28 dynohub up front connected to a Sinewave Revolution with 2.25” Vittoria Barzo. Hope Pro 4 at the back with WTB KOM Tough rim and 2.25” Vittoria Mezcal. Hope headset, spacers, stem and seatclamp. Ergon GA3 grips on Ritchey bars with J-bend aerobars. Fizik Taiga saddle bolted to a Ritchey seatpost.

Key items of kit: Alpkit Soloist. Berghaus sleeping bag. Sea to Summit mat. Spare set of merino riding clothes plus waterproofs. Tools and spares. Garmin Edge 1030+ for navigation with Komoot on phone as backup. Exposure front light and helmet light with Moon rear lights. 20100mAh battery and dynohub to keep everything charged. All rammed into a mixture of Tailfin and Blackburn bags.

Tom Cornes

Name: Tom Cornes

Age: 34

Location: Bala, Gywnedd

Bike: On One Big Dog, 4130 Steel Hardtail medium Frame

Key items of kit: Wren Inverted 110mm Sus-Forks, Wren Perseverance Bars with Aero loop, (Podium Sports UK), Hope Tech 3 Brake set R160/F180mm, Hope Pro 4 hubs on Halo Vortex Rims. Peaty’s Tubeless Setup, Vittoria Barzo F/R, Hope Cranks w/30tooth Chainring, 12 speed Shimano Deore. Unite Flat Pedals, Topeak 10L luggage bags F/R, Topeak Top Tube Bags (x2), Koala Kit Stem bags (x2), Alpkit Frame bag Wahoo Bolt V2, Charge Spoon Saddle and lighting by Knog.

Luke Joy-Smith

Name: Luke Joy-Smith

Age: 50

Location: Bristol, UK

Bike: Trek Roscoe 9 with Shimano 1x12.

Key items of kit: Mixture of Tailfin aero and top tube, Lezyne roll bag, pod sacks. Big Agnes copperspur for accommodation.

Michael Travers

Name: Michael Travers

Age: 50

Location: Canewdon, UK

Bike: Travers DIRTi EVO bespoke, SRAM Mullet groupset with Garbaruk 10-52 cassette, Travers Carbon flared bars with Redshift stem, Nextie Carbon 650b rims built on Hope Pro 5 reah hub and SON 28 dynamo.

Key items of kit: kLite dynamo sytem with always on USB so I can run the dual rear light all the time but still charge my cache battery. 7RDS bespoke bags from Ukraine. Garmin 1040 solar with Garmin 745 watch for backup.

Si Gittings

Name: Si Gittings

Age: 46

Cap number: Si

Location: South Wales

Bike: Scott Scale 930 (2018), DT Swiss XR1501 wheels, Vittoria Barzo 2.35 front, Mezcal 2.1 rear, Truvativ XO 170mm cranks, SRAM GX Eagle mech and chain, Air Bike 9-50T cassette, Shimano SLX 2-pot 180/160 brakes, One-Up 150mm dropper post, Ergon SM Pro saddle, Sonder Confucius bars, Ergon GA3 grips.

Key items of kit: Alpkit Stingray frame bag, Restrap Race large top-tube bag, Restrap large bar bag + food pouch, Ortlieb QR seat pack, Decathlon Riverside food pouch, Lezyne Deca Drive 1500i front light, Moon Nebula rear light, Garmin 830 GPS unit, Apidura 1.5L frame bag hydration bladder, LifeStraw collapsible bottle.

Sam Davidson

Name: Sam Davidson

Age: 32

Location: Bristol, UK

Bike: Trek Procaliber hardtail, SID forks, flat pedals and Race King tyres.

Key items of kit: Exposure lighting, Tailfin bags, home made sleeping bag & jacket, all the waterproofs and of course trail sandals.