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May 13, 2017, 2:48 p.m. -  Tehllama42

Bah - didn't mean to insinuate that.  The ladies that are confident about getting into the sport, they're usually locked in and love it, and after the first good group ride they're hooked for life.  Given the demographics of who is actually finishing up with higher education and landing solid jobs, you're going to be increasingly right on the money. I think the bigger gap is that the good executions of women's-specific bikes don't start until you're up in the Juliana/Beti/Contessa/Liv offerings that are twice the price of the Hawk Hill - the rest are currently biased towards the S.I.A.P.I. strategy -- I feel that this is the bike which can break that mold, for the better. I'm thinking more in terms of a vehicle to get more ladies who aren't already bikers into the sport - in terms of a 'one bike to do everything' solution for somebody who already does some hiking, running, surfing, skiing/snowboarding, or other outdoor sports, this is arguably one of the best, because it doesn't immediately ask for a big tradeoff committment to get into the sport. I credit those types who are already active in adventure/outdoor sports to know that they need to spend enough to enjoy it correctly, but something like this where somebody wouldn't have to invest the equivalent of a mediocre automobile but isn't a rolling example of questionable tradeoffs - I think that can be a really good thing in general. In a more general sense, I could be way wrong, but I think a lot of the reason hardcore MTB is so isolated as a community is how big a cost barrier there is between path bikes ($50-400) range that will, for the most part, implode if ridden hard, and the area where bikes are actually good enough to take on blue trails and enjoyed if pushed.  With the information requirement AND cost (or just higher cost) barriers to entry being so high, it's harder to bring in new people [and small isolated groups are easier to marginalize when it comes to silly things like access]... with a real, viable, and awesome tool being available at a really good price ($2000 USD puts you on a Hawk Hill with a dropper, good tires, and sorted brakes, with spares and must-haves), that barrier isn't really there anymore. I'd love to see a hardtail specced identically - a Recon Silver, 1x Drivetrain, Good Cockpit, and Deore brakes equipped bike is exactly what that market space needs.  At my tubbiest (253lb rider + gear weight) I ran that exact setup, and was only ever disappointed in brake performance of Avid's on 160mm rotors when trying to decelerate from 40mph on long road descents. As far as OEM order lead-time consideration, I think this type of spec isn't going out of style anytime soon - just put the pro riders on these things and make some standard shredits of the bikes in totally stock form - the point will be made that this bike won't hold you back if you're just getting into the sport.

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