Right after her Milton Keynes race, we caught up with rider Hannah Payton, who is now aiming for a chance to participate in the World Championships in the Czech Republic. Earlier in the season, we photographed her cyclocross bike at the UCI Qiansen Race in China, a rig which propelled her to seventh place in the early season race.
Although she has recently swapped some parts on her rig for her recent showing at the World Cup in Namur, where she suffered an early mechanical soon after the start, her earlier build reveals an intriguing selection of components worth examining.
The frame is from Kinesis, a company who has been designing frames in the United Kingdom for 15 years, and was an early pursuer of disc brakes on cyclocross bikes (creating their first cyclocross bike with disc mounts over 10 years ago). Old-timers may remember the day when Kenesis aluminum cyclocross forks were the dominant fork in the US. While their current cyclocross model, the Crosslight Pro 6, continues in that tradition, Hannah Payton rides on one of their older models, the Crosslight CSIX2, which uses cantilever bosses instead.
The high modulus, full monocoque construction frame boasts a zero stack headset, and runs the cables naked across the top tube. The company markets the frame’s CROSSBOX as a signature element of their design, which is an incredibly stiff bottom bracket shell designed to reduce flex and power loss.
From the early races of the seasons up through Milton Keynes, Payton was using an Ultegra Crankset with double BBG Bashguards on the sides of her chainring. In Issue 27, we examine this as one of the many DIY alternatives to the narrow/wide chainrings on the market today; if you are not a subscriber, be sure to order a digital subscription.
The side profile in a drivetrain shot several pictures down below shows another view of being able to excel with time-tested components. You won’t be able to find the model Shimano Ultegra 6500 crankset new at your local bike shop, but extensive ebay hunting might land you a deal on a durable crankarm. Payton uses a traditional Octalink bottom bracket, a far cry from the Pressfit and outboard bearing systems common on most cyclocross bikes today.
In China, Payton used microSHIFT WHITE levers and continued doing so until she transferred to a CX1 11-speed drivetrain. She was one of the few sponsored riders who departed from the more common SRAM/Shimano usage (and the less but also used Campagnolo drivetrains). While the lure of SRAM’s 11-speeds are obviously attractive, her use of microSHIFT goes to show that one can still place a respectable top-10 in a UCI race without a larger name groupset. Danish racer Joachim Parbo also raced several seasons on the lesser-known group.
The WHITE brake levers are aluminum with plastic composite shifters, and weigh in at 404g per set. The levers combined with a 10-speed rear derailleur and double front derailleur can generally be found online for $250-$275, which is not a bad price even for a rider on a budget.
At the other end of the spectrum, Payton went all-out on the brakes, using TRP’s EuroX Mag Cantilevers, which retail for $329.99 and weigh in at a scant 112g per set (which is lighter than most carbon-fiber cantilever brakes).
Although not the ideal tire choice for the muddy riding found all over the courses of Milton Keynes and Namur, Payton’s Challenge Grifo 33 tries obviously suited her well for the UCI race in China. In an interview with Jamey Driscoll for Issue 26, he noted that the all-around tires were his favorite choices for the non-European races. Only in the thick sand in Europe would he opt for a file-tread.
The Grifo boasts enough knobs to dig and shed through dust and dirt better than file treads could.
Payton’s wheel selection is another tried and true component on her cyclocross build: Reynolds’ Thirty Two carbon tubular wheelset is from a 2011 revamped design, with each rim weighing out at 260g. While Reynolds has since departed from the model, their newer Assault SLG tubular wheels, deeper at 41mm, is the closest alternative available at Reynolds dealers for $1800 per set.
The BBG Bashguards are built in Portland, Oregon, and the above model is 55g, although the company also offers a superlight model that would cut this weight down to 24g, although the chainring bolts would also have to be changed to accommodate the 1/16 inch thick bashguards.
Although no system is impenetrable, we’ve found that it takes a good deal of mud and a perfect storm of chaos to cause a dropped chain on this kind of setup, so we were surprised when we watched the start of the Women’s Elite Race at the World Cup at Namur, and saw her having mechanical problems and fixing her chain right after the start of the race. We reached out to her soon after.
“I’ve changed group set to SRAM’s CX1,” Payton told us, although this wasn’t the reason for the mechanical. “I was in the crash at the start and my front brake had gone into my front wheel so when I jumped back on I went over the handle bars. The ‘chain drop’ happened because I’d punctured before the start and had to borrow a wheel. When I changed into my big sprocket the chain went into the wheel and got jammed. It was a bad 200 meters.”
Payton is still using the Crank Bros. Eggbeater 3 pedals, not so common for the professional riders in Europe compared to those racing in the United States. The pedals, weighing in at 290g per pair, retail at $130, and come without a weight restriction unlike the titanium spindle of the Eggbeaters 11 at 200lbs, although Payton hardly has to concern herself with that maximum recommendation.
Stay tuned for more news about Hannah Payton, including her upcoming World Cup race in Heusden-Zolder, on cxmagazine.com.
Hannah Payton’s Kinesis Crosslight CSIX2 Highlights:
Frame: Kinesis Crosslight CSIX2
Shifters: microSHIFT WHITE
Front Derailleur: N/A
Rear Derailleur: Shimano 105 10-speed
Cranks: Shimano Ultegra
Pedals: Crank Brothers Eggbeaters 3
Wheels: Reynolds Thirty Two carbon tubular wheels
Tires: Challenge Grifo 33
Brakes: TRP EuroX Mag Cantilever
Saddle: Selle Italia Turbomatic
MSRP: £1399.99 (for current Pro6 model with Shimano 105 and TRP Spyre-C disc brakes)
For more information: kinesisbikes.co.uk
Hannah Payton’s Kinesis Crosslight CSIX2 Photo Gallery: