Have you ever experienced the feeling of riding down in the Alps or the Pyrenees, especially on the Tour de France stages roads ? Riding down on asphalt is a matter of keeping the speed, and being focused on pure lines. It requires good skills and concentration to keep on the edge of the perfect line. As pure cyclists, we also like climbing those prestigious gaps before to ride them down. But we also dreamt of a pure asphalt downhill bike... That’s the reason why, we created the Speedbike.
The inspiration of the Speedbike comes from the 50cc racing motorcycles from the 60’s to the 80’s. These amazing bikes where incredibly small, and suffered form a lack of power. They were very difficult to ride efficiently because the horse power was available on a very tight RPM zone. With those bees on small tires, the only way to go fast was to keep the rotating speed of the engine in the 500 RPM range of full power, and to draw very nice lines to avoid loosing speed. It was pure state of the art of piloting !
Our idea of a downhill bike was close to this kind of motorbike because of its dimension. The idea was also to be able to lay down on the bike, in order to gain speed in straight sections. For that reason, we placed the rider on the rear wheel, which didn’t allow us to use any transmission system. But the fact that there was no other way to get fast than counting on the gravity force was perfect for us. It means that you have to keep concentrated on your lines. If you get out the one and only perfect line, you get punished ! Concerning the wheels, we tried to keep as close as possible to the diameter of the 50cc bikes. We also wanted to make it as compact as possible, but with a good stability. All these reasons drove us to choose 24’’ wheels. The front end has to be quite stiff : we decided to use a tapered headset system, with a downhill fork double crown. The rider can adjust his position with the 1/2 handlebars, and a multi position foot pegs system. Brakes : we decided to use MTB DH brakes. With two ø 203 mm disc brakes, we had no doubt about braking efficiency...
Finally the idea was just simple : a frame, a saddle, two wheels and good brakes. What else ?
The design of the frame follows Jaycee’s first rough sketches, but it has been developed with Antidote Solution, an engineering company, which also handled the technical management of the project once the parts have been built.
Many partners also joined the project. Since months they all keep it secret ! And all share the same enthusiasm.