Bike Check – Rich Thomas’ 2016 Nukeproof Mega.

Wideopenmag’s top dog Rich Thomas was out in Madeira racing the Endtrudo Enduro, organised by Freeride Madeira. Rich finished a stellar 8th in a packed crowd aboard his 2016 Nukeproof Mega 275 Team.

Not known for his enduro antics, our downhill veteran Rich Thomas took a Nukeproof Mega 275 Team out to the Portuguese island of Madeira for his first enduro race in five years. If you missed his race coverage, you can catch it here, in the meantime, find out what Rich, the man who’s swung a leg over every Nukeproof bike made of the new do-it-all machine.Nukeproof Mega Team 275 Nukeproof Bikes Wideopenmag Freeride Madeira

Rich says …

I’m always excited to see Nukeproof’s new bikes and get my leg over one as I’ve ridden each and every one. This time was no exception; however, I’d been hearing rumours that this new Mega was ‘the one’ and ‘another level’ in comparison to the former frameset. I was not disappointed when it was dropped off!Nukeproof Mega Team 275 Nukeproof Bikes Wideopenmag Freeride Madeira
The bike.
The new Mega 27.5 and now 29 models look exceptional and boast a great range of specs over the different models, giving the consumer so much variety to choose from. Nukeproof as a brand have generally had this dialled over the years in comparison to their competitors but have blown everybody out of the water this year with the variety. I think we’ll be seeing 14 year old kids just starting out on jumps down the park on these and pros winning races on them too which is rad!

So as you can see Nukeproof have completely re-designed the frame for 2016 and it looks incredible. The bulky industrial and slow looking square tubing has been scrapped leaving a beautifully sculpted frame with clean lines and curves which are so easy on the eye and just look fast, the bike is now longer and lower, with slacker geometry and a lower centre of gravity, it’s been on a diet too – this bike is phenomenally light in comparison to its predecessor and for what it is capable of I still can’t quite get my head around it.

Nukeproof Mega Team 275 Nukeproof Bikes Wideopenmag Freeride MadeiraThe ride.
The above gives such a well-balanced and stable ride, the bike is so nimble you can put it where you like, even on those tight turns and awkward switch backs. The bike climbs so well due to the gearing, weight of the bike and options of pretty much locking out the Pike fork and Monarch rear shock (not pictured).

What strikes me first about this ride is that it is just bloody fun, you feel comfortable straight away with minimal fiddling and that means you can go fast, like, straight away. The build is great with Sram and RockShox providing the hard ware and Nukeproof with their own finishing kit, all super reliable and hard wearing. My only criticism would be the tyres, I prefer a more robust tyre for that puncture resistance and smoother ride when things get loose and rough. But that is a personal comfort thing.

Here’s how I see it;

Comfort = fast = fun.
Uncomfortable = fast or slow = not fun. (however you look at it!)

Intense Primer 29 Leaderboard

Nukeproof Mega Team 275 Nukeproof Bikes Wideopenmag Freeride MadeiraAll I have changed on the bike are the grips and saddle, personal preference really and it just so happens that I had a new box of DMR products for the Wideopenmag DH team so we’ve thrown on their new Stage 1 Saddle and Deathgrip designed by our kid Bren Fairclough. Which are quite possibly the most thought through grips ever designed for real mountain biking and therefore are super nice and comfortable, which = fast, which therefore = fun – see, it is all linked and much more simple than some would have you believe. Also a new factory edition from Mudhugger.

Nukeproof Mega Team 275 Nukeproof Bikes Wideopenmag Freeride Madeira

The fine details

Frame: 27.5″ T6 6061 aluminium
Forks: Rockshox Pike RCT3, 27.5″, 160mm, Solo Air, Black
Rear Shock: Rockshox Monarch Plus RC3 Debonair, 216 x 63mm, ML
Chainset: SRAM X01 170mm with Direct Mount Ring 32T, Black
Shifter: SRAM X01, Black, 11 Speed
Derailleur: SRAM X01, Black, Carbon, 11 speed
Chain: SRAM PC-X1
Cassette: SRAM XG-1180, 10-42T
Wheels: SRAM Rail 50, 27.5″, Black/Yellow
Front Tyre: Schwalbe Magic Mary, Snake Skin, Trail Star, 27.5″
Rear Tyre: Schwalbe Nobby Nic, Snake Skin, Pace Star, 27.5″
Brakes: SRAM Guide RSC
Rotors: SRAM Centreline 180mm
Headset (Top): ZS44-28.6-T2
Headset (Bottom): ZS56-40-B8
Stem: Nukeproof Zero, 50mm, Black/Yellow
Handlebars: Nukeproof Warhead 20mm Rise, 760mm, Black/Yellow
Seatpost: Rockshox Reverb Stealth, 150mm
Saddle: Nukeproof Vector CrN-Ti, Black/Yellow

So, over and out. Time to get on and ride it some more!

Finally a huge thanks to the guys over at Nukeproof and Rob Sherratt for the loan of the bike to test, Olly at DMR Bikes for the personal finishing touch, John at Freeride Madeira for his hospitality this week, showing us around the amazing trails here in Madeira and finally Nath at Indybikeco for giving the bike a once over before the trip.Nukeproof Mega Team 275 Nukeproof Bikes Wideopenmag Freeride Madeira