One week in: Santa Cruz Blur TR

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Short travel? 26″ wheels? Aluminium frame?! Did we just go back in time?! Hell no – this is actually one of Santa Cruz’s newest models and – we reckon – could well be one of its most fun. Let’s see what it’s all about …

I’ve had the Santa Cruz Blur TR for about a week now and have packed in some awesome riding so far up in Scotland and back home in the West Country. I need to get a lot more riding to reach a final verdict … but so far I’m pretty hooked on riding it. Always a good sign.

The Blur sports (amongst other things):

  • 125mm of travel via a Fox Float CTD
  • 26″ wheels with Hope Pro2 hubs, WTB Lazer disc rims and Maxxis High Roller tyres
  • Fox Float CTD 130mm fork
  • 68degree head angle
  • 13.1″ BB height

The BlurTR is meant to be a more affordable version of the mighty Blur Carbon.
Frame only price: £1749
Full bike prices from £3249

You’ll probably recognise it from Josh Bryceland’s simply ridiculous edit from earlier this year. Rat Attack!:

So what’s the BlurTR all about then?
I’m trying to decide exactly what the Blur TR is. On paper I wouldn’t blame you for being a bit confused by it. It’s got a pedal friendly 125mm of travel front and rear and a hill climb hungry 20 gears making it look like an XC bike. But oppositely flick the shock onto ‘descend’ and it eats up the rough stuff surprisingly well for a little bike. The low-slung top tube also makes it super easy to throw the bike around on tight, technical trails and on the jumps in your local bike park. The not-quite-slack and not-quite-steep 68 degree head angle doesn’t help answer the question either.

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But – that’s all just the ‘on paper’ – I chucked a leg over the bike for the first time at Innerleithen’s Golf Course trails and I didn’t need to bother asking too many questions. I flicked the suspension on to ‘descend’, hit the gas and was instantly having fun.

The suspension – despite being being only 125mm – works really well. It feels like there’s plenty enough squash to ride rough, fast trails and over bashy rocks and roots without feeling like a slug on the trails or when schlepping back up the fire road. Given most of us ride quite pedally trails with plenty of flat, tiring sections between descents this bike feels like it makes a lot of sense.  Sure – with only 125mm of travel at either end you’ll quickly find the limits of how hard you can push the Blur but I think that’s all part of the fun – it’s a bike that’s tuned to be forgiving and fun but without loosing any of the excitement of a short travel trail bike.

In terms of a final verdict though – we’re not there yet. We’ll be putting plenty of miles into the Blur. We’re particularly keen to see how much fun can be had on some bigger, rougher, faster trails in South Wales.

What do you think of the Blur TR? Would a shortish travel, 26″ wheeled trail bike with comfy geometry suit your riding?

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Thanks to Santa Cruz UK for the test
Bike shot at the top by Mr Ian Linton
Other shots by Oscar Newton Mason.


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