Mountain bike stage racing is a true test of any athlete. Rugged trails and varying weather conditions, day-after-day all take their toll, and it’s the same for their bikes. Popular cycling website BikeRadar published a piece detailing the brutal effect that the terrain has on equipment at the Absa Cape Epic, considered the pinnacle of mountain bike stage racing, “what survives the Epic, will likely survive anything.”
As part of the Epic Series, the Perskindol Swiss Epic is an Absa Cape Epic Qualifier race and poses similar challenges. Riders are keenly aware of how important it is to take care of their machines and nurse them through the 5-day Alpine event unscathed – a clean and well-maintained bike, especially the drivetrain, is crucial to success.
Squirt Cycling Products® is now the Perskindol Swiss Epic’s Official Chain Lube and Bike Wash Partner, providing much-needed maintenance during and after each stage. Squirt’s proprietary formulas will be on-hand – a unique, wax-based chain lubricant and a concentrated biodegradable bike cleaner (Squirt Bike Cleaner®). This leaves one less thing for the riders to be concerned about – just one of the many advantages of a full-service mountain bike race. Riders need only to focus on the trail ahead and pedal (and occasionally look at the magnificent scenery).
For the 2018 Perskindol Swiss Epic, Squirt will provide essential event support services as the Official Chain Lube and Bike Wash Partner. The Squirt Bike Wash service is available to all riders after each stage as well as a top-up chain lube service at the second waterpoint on each stage. Participants will receive complimentary Squirt Chain Lube and Squirt Barrier Balm in their registration packs and also stand a chance to win a prize hamper during the evening presentations.
As with all great products, Squirt Chain Lube® was founded out of a dire need, in this case for a solution to traditional, oil-based (attracting dirt) or inferior wax-based chain lubes (quickly running dry) available at the time. The founders of Squirt envisaged a system that would be able to cope with the harsh mountain biking conditions in South Africa, and together four mountain biking enthusiasts and friends (an engineer, a pharmacist and two advocates) they formed a company and invented a device which attached to a mountain bike frame, allowing the rider to squirt lubricant onto the chain ‘on the fly’ – the next, obvious step was to formulate the lubricant to fill it. Squirt Chain Lube® was born.
Overseeing the process, the founders developed a biodegradable formula that wouldn’t attract dirt, leave black chain marks on one’s calf and cause undue wear on expensive parts – wax creates a barrier to contaminants entering the chain. After extensive testing in extreme Southern African terrain, they soon realized that the wax lubricant was so effective and long-lasting that it effectively ‘killed’ the Squirt lubrication system. Squirt Chain Lube® soon made its way into the workshops of many hyper-critical South African bike mechanics, bike shop shelves and the country’s biggest mountain bike races. Expansion to the rest of the world was inevitable – it’s now available in 50 countries.
Danie Van Wyk, Director at Squirt says, “With Squirt Cycling Products’ exciting partnership with the Perskindol Swiss Epic, we’re able to provide riders who participate in this top class event with a product that is tried, tested and trusted all around the globe by some of the worlds’ top mountain bikers.”
Indeed, Squirt Chain Lube® remains the choice of Olympic gold medallists, world and national champions – the likes of Julien Absalon, Bart Brentjens, Rudi Van Houts, Ariane Lüthi, Anne Tauber, Jennie Stenerhag and XTERRA World Champion Bradley Weiss (to name but a few). All contribute significantly to the testing and further development of Squirt’s products.