By Steve Medcroft
At the Sea Otter Classic in Monterey, California, Specialized Factory team racers Christoph Sauser, Alban Lakata, Sabine Spitz and Liam Killeen rolled out to the time trial start on pink S-Works Epic frames. Identical to their team-issue bikes, the frames were coloured to celebrate the twenty-fifth anniversary of the first mass-produced mountain-bike; the Specialized Stumpjumper. “The very first [team-issue] Stumpjumper was pink,” said Kevin Franks of Specialized. “We're using them here at Sea Otter and then at the Garda Festival in Italy later this month. After that, they're going into the Specialized museum.”
The S-Works Epic is, of course, Specialized's top-end full-suspension cross-country race bike. The front triangle and main rear pivot links are built from company-branded Fact 10m carbon, the shock extensions are magnesium, and the brake bosses and sealed cartridge-bearing pivots are all titanium – which all puts a fully-built production bike in the sub-25-pound weight range. The FSR alloy rear triangle offers 100 millimeters of travel using Specialized's exclusive Brain shock technology, a Fox-backed initiative designed to give solid pedal performance on smoother trail along with active absorption in rough terrain.
Each of the pink frames at Sea Otter was built up with its rider's regular race-bike kit. We got a closer look at Killeen's Epic in the team's pit and found that the weight conscious Commonwealth Games and Sea Otter cross country winner is very liberal about mixing the stock build with his own personal choices in components.
Read the entire Liam Killeen's Specialized S-Works Epic pro bike feature here.