we decided to put a set of latest Pirelli race ready Scorpion tyres on our test bikes this year. Not only did we choose their super fast and flighty, Scorpion XC RC, but we then went for the 2.2 widths – just to add a bit more spice. True to form, the Orbea Oiz XC bike that we ran these tyres on, became an unleashed trail beast that required careful handling, and harping back to those halcyon days where flat pedals on a hard tail taught you the necessary skills of foot control.
Those all important items of the bike
Once in a while you test a tyre that seems to have it all. I’m quite fussy with my road tyres too, as I live and ride in the Yorkshire Dales, where the gravel edged roads are tight and twisty and take no prisoners. I want to feel safe, and it’s not always possible when you’re testing tyres. However, these new Pirelli all-weather tyres in the 26 mm size are the cycle tyre equivalent of having Belgium Chocolate Cake from Jervaulx Abbey – they’re simply irresistible.
It’s been cold and damp here in North Yorkshire recently. The leaves are lying on the ground and adding to the autumnal road dangers. Good tyres are critical are this time of the year, as they can compensate just a little for a lack of handling ability, which I’m modest enough to admit to having. Pirelli are a brand that are used to creating tyres for bad weather.
These Pirelli PZero TLR SL tubeless ready tyres have proved themselves to be impeccable at handling, as well as being a superb rolling tyre, meaning that I really have had some sublime rides on this particular example of 26mm rubber. So much so that it’s going to be difficult for me to replace them, as I move further into the Pirelli range on our tests.
Ok, now that I got your attention, we can continue with some technical aspects about my bike:
There are two really important parts to my RedChilli WR1 bike; firstly, the carbon pedals by Shimano, as they fasten to my feet and prove superb power transfer and stability when riding. Then, it’s obviously my saddle…
When the schwalbe pro one TT tan wall 25mm arrived here for a test, it was obvious that we needed to hand it onto a speed freak – thankfully Ben fits the bill, having a love of fixed gear urban riding and lo-pro bikes. This tyre however would be going onto his Giant TCR.
Schwalbe seem to sit in a select group of really sound tyre brands with consistently good products. Hutchinson and Panaracer occupy this space also. Well developed products that perform well. Time then to take a look at this tubeless offering.
Yes, I know that many riders set things up with a 2.4 at the rear and 2.2 at the front – and we might try that next- but this test was all about the Scorpion XC M 2.2 and how lively and fun a ride it provides – and boy is this an exciting tyre.
If you’re after a tyre for colder and wetter conditions, then the Pirelli PZero Velo 4S is probably an ideal choice. We’ve been using it in the harsh conditions of the Yorkshire Dales National Park, and it’s proved itself to be a fast rolling, grippy and hard wearing tyre for all conditions.
When the trails are tough and technical and can change in an instant if the weather is feeling temperamental, tyre choice is vital. Thankfully, these Pirelli Scorpion MTB Mixed Terrain Tyres are just what’s required. Tested and developed alongside the world’s top teams, they’re made for days on the trail when you can expect the unexpected.