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Joe Connell Takes on Elite DH with his Gen 2 161 with "just" 174mm of travel

Privateer Bikes/HUNT MTB rider Joe Connell has just returned from Portugal after racing the Elite category of the Portuguese DHI in Boticas. Followers of Privateer Bikes might have seen we've been playing around with a custom linkage to give Joe's Gen 2 Privateer 161 more travel, which he took the Scottish National DH Champs to win on earlier this year.

Still, interestingly, for this race, Joe opted for the stock Gen 2 linkage and 65mm stroke rear shock, producing "just" 174mm of rear wheel travel. So rather than tackling this UCI-sanctioned DH race on a one-off custom DH race bike, Joe effectively strapped a pair of Fox 40 forks to a standard Privateer Gen 2 161 and took it downhill racing!

As you can see in the POV video, Joe certainly wasn't hanging about and, despite facing stiff competition from fast local riders, he still managed to collect 19th spot. Not bad for a rider coming back from a serious injury (Joe broke his tibia and fibula last year during the EDR) and racing on an enduro bike.

Joe now intends to make the most of the local British race season and use this same setup to switch between downhill and enduro riding for the rest of the year. Keep an eye out for Joe at the races and hit this link to learn more about the Privateer Gen 2 161 and its ability to be over-stroked (out of the box) and safely run a dual crown fork.