Yorben Van Tichelt's Ridley X-Knght. © Cyclocross Magazine

Yorben Van Tichelt’s Ridley X-Night. © Cyclocross Magazine

You might see a lot of Ridley cyclocross bikes at your local race, and even read our recent pro profile of Adam Myerson’s Ridley X-Night, but it’s not every day you get to see one being raced by one of the top cyclocross teams in the world. Thanks to the intimate setting at China’s first-ever UCI cyclocross race, we were able to study Yorben Van Tichelt’s 2014 carbon Ridley X-Night cyclocross bike.

At just 19 years old, Van Tichelt is an up-and-coming Belgian junior racer on the Sunweb-Napoleon Games Cycling Team. Van Tichelt placed fifth at the UCI Cyclocross World Championships in Koksijde in 2012 and was at this year’s UCI cyclocross event held in China. He’s also a 13-time BMX Belgian National Champion, and is following the footsteps of racers like Sven Nys and Zdenek Stybar in crossing over from BMX to cyclocross. The Belgian makes his home in Oostmalle, where the European cyclocross season typically comes to a close each February.

Cyclocross Magazine grabbed a close-up look at Van Tichelt’s Ridley X-Night and got to check out some of the Belgian components that many here in the United States may not be familiar with.

The X-Night is made from Ridley’s proprietary blend of 30T-24T HM unidirectional carbon and features integrated cable routing, PF30 bottom bracket and a tapered head tube. The fork is a matching Oryx Pro full carbon monocoque Cross Series fork with cantilever bosses.

Ridley's matching ‘Cross Series carbon fork. © Cyclocross Magazine

Ridley’s matching Cross Series carbon fork. © Cyclocross Magazine

Shimano Dura Ace Di2 components make up the shifting and drivetrain with the exception of the light Rotor 3D+ compact cranks and Q-Rings, in a 36/46 combination. The Sunweb-Napoleon Games manager in China told Cyclocross Magazine that the team chose to still use Shimano Dura-Ace 7970 Di2 10-speed components instead of the newer 11-speed 9070 Di2 Components that Sven Nys has adopted for the 2013/2014 season, because of the wider cog spacing for muddy days.

The hand-built carbon rim wheelset comes from the Flanders-based company Forza (4ZA). Van Tichelt races on Forza (4ZA) Cirrus Pro T50 carbon tubular wheels with 50mm deep and 21.7mm wide rims. The wheels weigh a modest 1420g per pair and are paired with Flying Doctor versions (stiffer sidewall for better cornering) of the all-white 33mm Dugast Pipistrello tires.

4ZA Cirrus Pro CX brakes on Van Tichelt's X-Night. © Cyclocross MAgazine

4ZA Cirrus Pro CX brakes on Van Tichelt’s X-Knight. © Cyclocross Magazine

4ZA also supplies the Cirrus Pro cantilever brakes, bars and stem. Van Tichel’s pedal choice is Shimano’s XTR PD-M980. A 4ZA Cirrus Pro carbon seatpost and Selle San Marco Concor saddle finishes the build.

With plenty of years of racing ahead of him, Van Tichelt’s name may well become a well-known name to U.S. audiences.

Yorben Van Tichelt’s Ridley X-Night Cyclocross Bike Spec Highlights:

  • Frame: 2014 Ridlex X-Knight carbon cyclocross
  • Fork: Ridley Cross Series tapered carbon fork
  • Wheels: Forza (4ZA) Cirrus Pro T50, 50mm carbon, 1420g, 21.7mm wide
  • Tires: Dugast Pipistrello Flying Doctor Tubulars, 33mm white
  • Components: Shimano Dura Ace Di2 7970 10-speed
  • Cranks: Rotor 3D+ compact cranks
  • Chainrings: Rotor Q-Rings, 36/46
  • Brakes: 4ZA Cirrus Pro CX
  • Seatpost: 4ZA Cirrus Pro Carbon, 20mm setback
  • Saddle: Selle San Marco Concor

Yorben Van Tichelt’s Ridley X-Night Gallery:

Kevin White

Kevin White

After stints as a photo journalism student and bike messenger, Kevin White now aims to bring more cyclocross joy to CXM's readers. He led our print feature on the 2011 SSCXWC in San Francisco in Issue 16. Kevin now calls Providence his home, but cut his teeth racing jungle cross in NorCal.
Kevin White