This is one of those bikes that flew under the radar for me for quite awhile. I was super interested in the Balance last year but never could quite hook up with the Brothers to get a test ride. Meanwhile this Riot thread kept appearing at the top of the Canfield forum on mtbr.com, then my buddy Dusty mentioned he had one on order so I had to see what all the fuss was about. As I got wading through the 70+ pages of e-speculation, and e-anticipation I started to see why so many people were excited about this bike.
Canfield Brothers kinda started the agressive, fun 29er category with the Yelli Screamy AM hardtail back in 2011, but with the Riot they take the agressive, yet playful 29er concept and turn it on its ear, with a FS 29er with 140mm of rear travel, 66.5 degree head angle, and downright stubby 16.3″ chain stays. How can you NOT want to ride a bike like that, especially after Evil has been taking the world by a storm with its own short travel aggressive 29er, the Following? I was fortunate enough to meet up with Lance Canfield near the expo area of the Interbike Dirt Demo this week to ride the new Riot.
Lance had his personal Raw, size large Riot out of the van and ready to ride when I met him. He saddled up his EPO carbon and off we went. Lance, though 15 lbs lighter than me, rides quite a bit more aggressively than me so his suspension settings ended up being spot on. The fit of the size large, which sports a somewhat short ETT length of 24″ has a generous and roomy 18″ reach which is the number that matters more to me when it comes to fit. The stack and bottom bracket height are a bit tall at 24.8″ and 13.78″ on paper, but for a longer travel 29er those numbers aren’t bad and what’s more important is how the bike functions on the trail and this bike felt right. Lance explained that the slot car, in-the-bike feel comes from having the bb below the axles yet still allowing for good pedal clearance in the rocks. The steep 76.0 degree effective seat tube angle puts the rider in a really good position to keep the front wheel planted on steep climbs.
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