I just got done doing some "catching up" on some 29"er news and saw this on a new 29" hardtail bike coming out from Orbea. The really cool thing is that it is carbon fiber! Yep! It's that bike that Orbea showed in September at the On Dirt Demo in a 26" version called the Alma. I don't care what they call it..................this bike rawks, doode! Light, stiff, and incredibly good looking. This news begs the question, "Is Trek sleeping at the wheel, or what?!"
Trek, as you probably know, owns Gary Fisher Bikes, the company that put 29"ers on the map from a mass marketing standpoint. It is logical then to think that with the onset of 29"ers growing appeal, and the constant sold out status of alot of 29"er Fisher inventory, that Fisher- or at least Trek- would come out with their OCLV mountainbike frame in 29"er flavors. Don't come around here telling me that it's too much of a niche market for Trek to invest into. I submit the TTX as an example of how Trek has previously chased a niche market with high end OCLV!
Is Trek going to let this market segment get divied up into small parts by second tier manufacturers? It would appear that way. At least you would think that they would up the ante for their own race team members. Imagine Cameron Chambers on an OCLV hardtail 29"er. ........or Nat Ross. Crazy, I say. Simply crazy!
It's not just Trek that's sleeping, it's all the "big" companies. Specialized, Cannondale, and Giant are going to be playing catch up pretty soon................if they aren't all ready. Perhaps it's time for some of these bigger players to lay "The Smackdown" and get crackin'. Hmm.........?
In the meantime we'll be waiting to see what this "soul" bike from Orbea is all about, drooling over it, while all the "big companies" seem to be saying, "Wake us up when it's over."
They'll be sleeping a loooong time!