Vittoria Bomboloni MTB Tyre
Richard Schumacher from Fulford Cycles at York is a serious rider. He’s done the Megavalanche several times and rides regularly at Dalby Forest on the technical stuff. An ideal guy then to test the Vittoria Bomboloni Fat Bike tyre for us.
So, 29ers, what’s that all about? Some weirdo probably supporting a beard and sandals that’s what. This is what my first polite thoughts were: I knew that I had to change my mind. After all, I own a bike shop! Before all that I needed to sort out the fact that I had no bike with this wheel size! Time to get on the phone, ring round all my friends of same body size to me. One call and a short drive later I had a bike and I could test the new all-singing and dancing Vittoria BOMBOLONI fat tyres (29×3.0 79-622), with their impressive looking 120 tpi carcass, 965 gramme tubeless ready – even if they were all wrong! So putting the beard back on, I had quick nap to reset back to the new and become open to all things.
After all, I’m a reviewer now and this is Yorkshire. We’re open to new ideas.
First ride out on the new bike new and the Vittoria tyres was a trip to Dalby Forest (my night ride loop) and just a short but fun filled, smile inducing 10 mile loop to smash things around and give the Vittoria’s a hard time on this world class trail.
On the climbs, the tyre didn’t feel as slow as I was expecting, which was a bit confusing looking at the size of the wheel with a big foot print and with oodles of grip (= drag). This as it happens is not as big a surprise, as you’d think, with the height of the tread being relatively low.
Turning off the long climb onto a fire trail, I wondered how it would cope with the loose gravel of the track. Would it be skittish and tricky to hold onto? On this part of the track you can wind it up, but the amount of grip provided by the Vittoria’s was surprising, allowing me to turn the cranks as fast as my legs would supply the power. In the rough and the grime and grit, the bike changed into a spritelier and more nimble flyer, with the Vittoria’s providing a feeling like a hovercraft! Ridewise I felt really comfy as the ample volume of the tyre rolled over everything, engulfing all that was under it in the ample tread. In terms of toughness, it was challenging the world class technicalities of Dalby Forest and coming out smiling.
Reaching the turning point I swopped into the hidden trail, into and through the deep thick under growth and wet sloppy mud, with a healthy splattering of rock and roots to really test any tyre, bike or rider to its limits.
The bike just ploughed through with confidence, helped my own growing confidence with the Bomboloni that I’d gained. Upping the speed was easy, and the positive feedback I was getting to push to the limit of the tyres was spot on. The extra speed started to reel back the time I had lost on the climb, having not been fit enough – more riding needed!
Off camber now, and swinging in between tree on a metalled road descent, pushing hard and bullying the bike, with the 800mm bar sending it where I wanted, and knowing that it would go wherever I wanted, working the seemingly endless amounts grip the Bomboloni tyres were offering. The SPH (Smiles Per Hour) level was going through the roof and the tyres were doing as intended. I was glad to be out on the trails, comforted by the security provided from Vittoria.
Time then to test the tyre on my favourite section of trail. Here goes the last two segments of the whole forest; I know what I want from myself, from the bike and what I expect from tyre too. All that remains is to see what the big V can deliver; the extra grip threw me out a little, but that’s no bad thing. Plenty of air time, with the back sliding out while the front dug in deep, then all coming back together just when you need it. Exactly what you need, pushing hard and no need to think about anything other than your own limits.
This is what I think it should always be like; the only limiting factor should be you, the bike, with the components enhancing this SPH .
SPH though the roof – best ride ever (Smiles Per Hour)