Ani Gemmell​​​​​​​​ — CROSS COUNTRY MTB

​​​​​​​​"With XC there's such a mix of terrain. You want something that has good traction for the climbs and corners, but also has speed for race day.​​​​​​​​​​​​ For races I use the Maxis Rekon Race and Maxis Ikon on my NS Freeblast wheels - the ultimate combo in my books! 

 If it's a dry day I like to put 16 PSI in the front and 18 in the rear. ​​​​​​​​

​​​​​​For training I use Vittoria Mezcal - purely because of their versatility and durability"​​​​​​​​




"I roll the Vittoria Corsa G2.0 28mm clincher on NS38's. I chose the 28mm as I am racing on gravel and cobbles throughout the European season, so I want wider surface areas for more traction.

They are very fast tyres, but are also friendly on my race season budget."



Do you know the difference between Clincher and Tubeless?​​​​​​​​

​​​​​​​Clincher Tyres are the most commonly ridden, and loosely resemble car tyres in form and function. When inflated, the lip of the tyre (also known as the bead) is pushed against the internal ​​​​​​​​surface of the rim wall. As the internal air-pressure ​​​​​​​​is increased, it forces the clincher bead to lock into the rim wall and form a firm and stable interface.​​​​​​​​​​​

Tubeless compatible clinchers have grown in popularity in recent years; the vast majority of pros ride tubeless. This means the tyre is capable of being used both ways, either with or without an inner-tube.​​​​​​​​ This shape of tyre is designed to fit perfectly into the rim wall to create an air-tight seal.​​​​​​​​ Sealant, a liquid, is added to the inside of the tyre which hardens on exposure to air. At inflation, the sealant will be pressurized inside the tyre and, in the event of a puncture, will automatically ​close any leaks in the air-tight seal e.g. punctures. This usually happens instantaneously, allowing you to ride on, rather than having to change your inner tube.


So what difference does it make to my riding?


In tubeless tyres, the innertube is not a part of the system, which saves weight. However, the real gains are not just in weight, but in how a tubeless clincher deforms. By removing a layer (the innertube), the tubeless tyre is able to be more supple as it rolls. This change in deformation reduces rolling resistance, as the tyre becomes less rigid, and thus deflects less off of bumps in the road. ​​​​​​​​

​​​​​​​This increased suppleness also increases traction, particularly when riding off-road, since it allows the contact surface of the tyre to expand. This is highly beneficial when riding technical terrain, where uneven surfaces are common.​​​​​​​​



"I roll Continental GP5000s for racing and training. I vary the width, training on 28mm and racing on 25mm.​​​​​​​​

​​​​I run the same brand for racing and training as, if I trust them in training, I know that I can trust them in racing.​​​​​​​​

​​​​​​​​I run 70-80 PSI in 28mm tyres, then add 10 PSI for 25mm's, but this obviously depends on the surface area and conditions."​​​​​​​​