Swedish Suspension Expert ÖHLINS Agrees a Three-Year Partnership with the World’s Best UCI DH Team in Addition to Support for Fellow Competitor Commencal 21.
Since 1976 – the year Kenth Öhlin first developed a prototype shock in his father’s workshop – ÖHLINS has pushed the boundaries of sport, providing race-winning suspension systems on and off the track – for motorsport and mountain bike (MTB). Fast forward to 2021, and the Swedish suspension expert today announces the renewal of its partnership with the Specialized Gravity UCI DH team. The three year deal will see ÖHLINS provide its DH38 m.1 triple crown fork and TTX22m rear shock and work with the team throughout the calendar to find and exceed the limits of market-leading suspension design.
Entrusting ÖHLINS to deliver consistent, dialed-in suspension performance on every run is Specialized Gravity rider and four-time UCI Downhill World Champion Loic Bruni, who will look to add another rainbow jersey to his already impressive palmares this season. Joining him will be teammates Finn Iles (Junior World DH Champion and 2x Junior World Cup Overall Champion) and Christopher Grice, an up-and-coming young talent on the downhill scene.
2021 brings further developments in Öhlins’ ongoing commitment to MTB racing and the gravity scene, together with Spanish distributor Andreani MHS, the brand has also signed a deal with Commencal 21. The team will be making its World Cup debut at Leogang for the start of the 2021/2022 UCI DH season, competing with the DH38 m.1 and TTX22m fitted to the Commencal Supreme. Spanish riders Ángel Suárez (DH National Champion) and Pau Menoyo (Junior DH National Champion) will ride ÖHLINS as part of an ambitious outfit that aims to build towards a UCI World Cup and World Championship win.
Both Specialized Gravity and Commencal 21 will provide invaluable feedback to ÖHLINS’ development team throughout the upcoming season, helping the brand further cement its position as the leading manufacturer in forward-thinking MTB suspension design. Performance gains aren’t just reserved for the pros though, as every insight, tweak and improvement feeds into ÖHLINS’ products – from top to bottom.
Reflecting on his team’s close collaboration with ÖHLINS, Loic Bruni, Specialized Gravity rider and four-time UCI Downhill World Champion, said: “The work we do collaborating with ÖHLINS provides a real advantage at all of our races. My mechanic and I have a privileged relationship with some incredible technicians and engineers back at the ÖHLINS factory. This allows us to constantly work on evolutions and improvements to the bike. The chassis is harder to modify, and it takes time, so we really push the suspensions to their best.
When my mechanic starts brainstorming with the Swedish crew, it gives birth to the craziest ideas and we are always able to do it thanks to ÖHLINS. There isn’t the weight of massive manufacturing constraints with them and we work with Formula 1 style confidentiality! With ÖHLINS, we focus on one bike to win races, and nothing else matters, I love it.”
Terje Hansen, Race Team Leader, MTB ÖHLINS Racing AB, said: “We’re a racing brand at heart so team partnerships are at the core of what we do. Specialized Gravity, and now Commencal 21, will give us invaluable feedback this season that will shape our product development. We’re also really proud to have a long list of ambassadors this year. At ÖHLINS, we have a strong heritage in motorsport of course, but there’s nothing quite like the MTB community.”
Performance matters, but DH isn’t just about racing. That’s why, alongside a series of high-profile racers, ÖHLINS is also proud to be joined by a host of big name riders and legends of the MTB community, a.k.a ‘dudes who shred’. Fabio Wibmer, Nico Vink and Kilian Bron, just to name a few, are among the riders who’ve opted for ÖHLINS again this year.
Alongside ÖHLINS’ extensive list of grassroots riders supported by local distributors, athletes riding ÖHLINS include: