Our Pick of the Best of the 2023 Core Bike Show.

Core Bike returned to Whittlebury Hall to welcome the UK bike industry amidst the constant din of cars being hammered at Silverstone.

As ever, with much of the kit on show having been out for some time, it was more of a good opportunity to meet people we don’t see anywhere else. However, there were some bits being launched at the show to catch the eye.

Hope Pro5

You essentially can’t walk into the Core Bike Show without walking past the Hope booth. They are slap bang in the middle of reception. The big news launched at the show was their new Pro5, which is an all-new offering that sees no stone unturned. Up from 44 engagement points to 108 thanks to an offset 6-pawl ratchet, low drag thanks to a new labyrinth seal and lighter, stiffer shell.

Steve Geall’s Tora EVH downhill bike

Upgrade had Steve Geall’s Tora EVH on the stand, which drew plenty of attention. Sporting his Upgrade sponsor kit of DMR components and TRP brakes, the Tora EVH is a T45 steel full suspension bike that takes the old-school inspiration and throws modern geometry and manufacturing into the mix.

We want.

Granite Design

Granite Design were over on the Windwave booth and had this nifty Quiver tool roll that’s designed to attach onto your saddle rails via the BOA closure. There’s space for tools, a lightweight tube and some other bits and bobs inside, as well as a zip pocket for those things that just won’t fit anywhere else. The material is splash proof to keep your kit away from the elements.

GT Bicycles

Despite having gone for a walk into a hedge a few miles from the show thanks to a late night break-in, Ethan Craik’s prototype GT Fury was back on the stand. GT Factory Racing have been riding this for a large portion of 2022 so it’s not super new but we certainly hadn’t had a close up look at one before.

Also, what’s this? A new logo? The GT logo seems to have been the same forever so we were super interested to find out more about what the classic US brand has afoot. We can’t tell or show you more… For now…

RaceFace ERA cranks

Silverfish had the new RaceFace Era cranks which look to take the top rung off the long-lived Next cranks. A claimed 300% increase in strength is mostly down to the fact that the pedal thread insert is now co-moulded into the carbon fibre rather than bonded (read glued) into place. On top of this you get a plate to see off shoe scuffs and a lifetime warranty that includes crashes.

Squire Straplok 35

If you’re on the hunt for a wearable, reflective lock that should do a solid number on keeping the scumbags away from your pride and joy, then the Straplok 35 from Squire should be worthy of a look. A multi-cable steel core is covered in a reflective neoprene outer to protect you and the bike. It’s Sold Secure Bicycle Silver Approved.

Funn

Tubeless valves might not be the most exciting thing ever but they need to work and work well. These new FastAir high flow valves from Funn look to do just that. Doing away with the traditional valve core, the cap threads onto the central core and loosens or tightens the mechanism. Lots of air movement when you want it, none when you don’t.

Fox Boa Leaderboard 2024

Endura

Endura came out swinging with a heap of new kit to get the juices flowing. Their MT500 full face now comes with Koroyd and MIPS, so your melon might never have been safer if it’s in one of these things. There’s also now a Singletrack full face, available in a kids’ version too, both now with MIPS.

Their Humvee shoes give a more affordable and broader shoe offering, in both gravity and XC modes. Their protection range has also had an update, including D30 throughout on their new chest protector, hip protectors and open-backed knee pads.

On top of all this is their new Trash Free Trails collaboration jersey which will be available soon but was getting a first showing on the Endura stand at Core Bike. This will be available through retailers when it’s rolled out of the Livingston works.

Why can’t all brands do the good things like Endura?

DMR

DMR had a few new tricks up their sleeves with an Olly Wilkins signature bar, the Odub. Alloy, spiral butted; 20, 35 or 50mm rise and 31.8 at 770mm width or 35mm at 800mm. These are an ode to the classic DMR Wingbar with Olly’s input.

The DMR V6 now comes in a fetching camo green, but nobody could find them so we could take a photo, and their new Grid grip is made of soft Kraton rubber with the classic DMR waffle pattern. Simple, yet effective.

MRP

Do away with spacers and getting the tools out when you need to take your chainring or cranks off, the new MRP AMg might just be the legendary brand’s best chain guide out there. The new TR2 upper guide offers four-way adjustability and tool-free access, tipping the scales from 80g upwards depending on size.

Fidlock

Any Fidlock fans will rejoice at this chode of a number. Yes, that’s a 750ml Fidlock bottle to answer all your hydration needs.

Kinesis

Want an inexpensive alloy hardtail to do whatever you might ask of it? Then the Kinesis FF29 might well be the one. Designed around a 140mm fork with sliding dropouts and just a range of cockpit sizes for £600, build it up how you like and head into the hills. Simple.

Beyond the products, it was great to kick the Zoom meetings to the curb and chat to all our UK industry pals face-to-face. Hopefully this is a sign of more to come.

Thanks to Core Bike for having us and putting us up. We’ll see you again next year.


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