ENDURO Long Term Test 2015 | The Whyte T-129 SCR Works
It’s time to introduce both the latest long term test bike and also the latest rider on our ENDURO Trail Team. Anyone who works for one of the big cycling brands will have spoken to Cat Smith, as she runs the Enduro World Series Expo in the Tweed Valley, Scotland, as part of the awesome Tweedlove team. When she is not chasing down sponsors, Cat lives and breathes cycling and adventure, and has stood on many podiums.
In 2015 Cat will be joining the ENDURO Trail Team, and will be focusing on endurance races in Scotland and internationally, all the way from 6 hour to 24 hour events, and also some multi-day stage races. She needs a bike that is fast and light, something that will be tough enough to survive being ridden on the rugged Scottish trails without too much bulk, and something comfortable enough to ride for 24 hours. She wanted an aggressive 120 mm 29er that was fun to ride – enter the Whyte T129 SCR Works.
UK company Whyte Bikes really impressed us with their G-150 Works, so we were keen to test the slimmed down, bigger wheeled stablemate, the T-129 SCR Works, and Cat seemed like the perfect long term tester. The SCR prefix to this model tells us that it is designed and optimised around a single chainring drivetrain, in this case the dependable SRAM X1. By dumping the provision for a front derallier, Whyte can now run a full width main pivot and beef up the symmetrical chain stays for unrivalled power delivery. The 6061 T6 alloy frame is striking in the flamboyant green colour and is priced at £3099.
The specification of the bike is perfect for multi day racing, with a 1×11 SRAM X-1 drivetrain, Stealth Reverb, SRAM Roam 40 wheels, 120 mm Pike fork and Fox Float Factory shock, it is all tried and tested. There is nothing that causes concern when it comes to reliability or performance, and the all up weight of 13kg is respectable for a 29er. The bars and stem are all in-house from Whyte but have a nice reach and sweep.
The geometry of the Whyte T129 Works SCR is bang up-to date, offering a long and aggressive chassis that will be well up for long days in the saddle, but also happy to be thrown down something a little cheekier. The 68 degree head angle is just right for a 120 mm 29er, and the long top tube and 40 mm stem allow plenty of room for dynamic movement. There is no small size available, but at 172 cm tall, Cat finds the medium a perfect fit.
|Head tube angle||68°||68°||68°|
|Seat tube angle||74.0°||73.8°||73.5°|
|Top tube length||617mm||637mm||657mm|
Changes to be made
This is the point where we normally say “the bars are too narrow and the stem is so long – the front wheel is in another county”, but not this time. With a 40 mm stem and 750 mm bars, the cockpit of the T129 offers excellent comfort and control. Cat will be changing the rear tyre (keeping the Maxxis Crossmark for when the trails dry out) to a Maxxis Beaver which should help in the wet conditions currently gripping the UK. Aside from that it is all good news, there are even specific mounts for a crudcatcher and waterbottle – often overlooked these days. The wheels come fitted with tubes, but Whyte also supply tubeless valves so that will be the first change to be made.
To follow the highs and lows of owning the Whyte T129 SCR Works, or any of the other long term test bikes – keep an eye on the Long-Term test timeline where every race victory, worn brake pad and flat tyre will be exposed.
For more information, check out the Whyte Bikes website
Words and photos: Trev Worsey