Few names are as instantly recognizable in the world of mountain biking as Tom Ritchey. Born in 1956, the American bicycle frame builder, racer, fabricator and designer is one of the godfathers of the sport. At the age of just 16, Ritchey earned the nickname, ‘The Senior Slayer’ after he won the prestigious Crockett-Martinez race in May of 1973. A force to be reckoned with from a very early age, he retired from road racing at 20 and turned his attention to designing his own bikes and the mountain trails of Marin County, California. In the 5 decades since Ritchey’s love affair with bikes began he has gone on to design bicycle components that have been used in winning some of the biggest races on earth including the UCI World Championships, the Tour de France and the Olympics.
Crafted and refined in California, mountain biking began as a way to make use of the trails and fire roads burrowed into the foothills and mountains of California. What began as a niche pastime for teenagers looking for a new way to ride their bikes 50 years ago has gone on to become a worldwide sport.
In the early days of mountain biking the bikes they used, affectionately known as klunkers, were built from 1940s and 50sSchwinn, Colson and Shelby bikes. Stripped down and built back up with better brakes and fatter tires to handle the rigors of downhill racing. These bikes were made and ridden by the likes of Charlie Kelly, Gary Fisher and Joe Breeze who have all been instrumental in the pioneering of mountain biking both in America and across the globe. Spurred on by competition at what was referred to as “Repack Races”, innovation was a constant feature in the early mountain biking scene with tests and trials being conducted on all kinds of designs until they grew into the mountain bikes we know today.
Donned with the classic Tom Ritchey red white and blue colorway, we have taken the spirit of Ritchey’s innovation and created ‘The SUPER73 ZX Team’ as an ode to the early stages of mountain biking. Ritchey clipless pedals, 34T Hope front cog and ten-speed gearing provide the drive for this creation. Hope Tech3 disc brakes and floating rotors give you top-tier stopping power while Ritchey grips and a wide, low-rise handlebar give you that signature mountain bike look. Gumwall tires and a perforated leather seat with world champion color details complete the look on this one-of-a-kind bike.
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