By Steve Medcroft
After a 6:59:48 finish in the Wilderness 101, a 101-mile endurance race in Central Pennsylvania mountain country, Chris Eatough sat on a foldaway camping chair entering an inventory of all the food and drink he consumed for his training log. After watching him glide over a rocky downhill out on the course and power the final flat three miles of the race, it’s easy to understand why Eatough is so successful at endurance racing; he can flat out hammer full-on for more hours than a normal person spends sitting in a cubicle at work.
Propped against a post five feet away from him at the Wilderness 101 finish was the machine that carried him up and down the mountains around State College, PA, (home of Penn State University) that day. The Trek Top Fuel, made with Trek’s 110 OCLV frame materials, is basically the production model, Eatough says. “This is the stock full-suspension frame with the carbon front and rear triangle and carbon rocker arm.”
Eatough runs Rock Shox Ario rear shock. “I get about three inches of travel. There are actually three setting that I use while I’m riding. In the fully-open setting I get a plush rear shock for the rockier sections. The fully closed setting is basically a lockout for the road sections or for sprinting. And then there’s kind of an in between setting, the motion control damping setting. The shock is still active on a bumpy trail but there’s very little pedal-induced bob.”