Tyre Tech Talk – November Dirt and Trail Magazine

by Bruce de Kock, Owner of Bike Tyre Warehouse

Original article published by Dirt and Trail Magazine, November 2019 Issue

It’s been awhile since I have written and it’s not the information or knowledge that is the problem; it’s the time to put a decent & informative scribble together especially on a regular basis, but having agreed to scribbling for the next year for both Dirt & Trail and RideFast I got away with one month in D&T and the next in RF this also allows us to cover a wider range of tyres & tyre related products, each month focussing on a particular brand and tyres related to the magazines core product focus & readership. 

MICHELIN ENDURO MEDIUM

So we are kicking off with Michelin this month (randomly selected) which is a win for Louis Enslin from  Michelin, the main reason being it is the last edition before the infamous Roof of Africa and a time when all the premium tyre brands and up and coming new contenders are doing deals, coveting pro riders and teams to ensure their brand is on the podium whether in Bronze; Silver or Gold.

This is the race that guarantees the podium winning brands high volume sales going into next year’s weekend riders and the race teams alike, and with so many brands now competing in this specialised segment of the dirt market where there is a very specific size range; with specialised carcass construction and compounds.

The competition is fierce – some have fallen by the wayside while others like Michelin have just gone from strength to strength so it was an obvious choice by Ryan Robertson GM Auto Cycle Centre a subsidiary of Motus. When I called him to let him know he had secured the November issue, straight away he selected the Michelin Enduro Medium, one of the top choices when it comes to Roof rubber.

As I am on the coal face of retail & wholesale in the M/C tyre industry I get to experience up front what sells for Roof and have done for over a decade now, bottom line you have to know the individual brands products very well and watch the market closely as any brand can literally slip a prototype into an event and take out the competition in one clean swipe, which always rocks the market.

Michelin announced the launch of the Enduro Medium at the FIM International 6 Days of Enduro (ISDE) in Brive-la-Gaillarde, France in late August 2017. The development of this new range involved pro riders Mathias Bellino; Julien Guathier and Emmanuel Albepart in total taking just over four years to develop. 

In addition to having been streamlined compared with the previous collection, the new Enduro range was carefully conceived to cover a wide variety of terrains with the choice of medium and hard compounds.

Thanks to the new compounds as well as the new tread pattern and construction the range delivers outstanding grip in dry & wet conditions alike, without sacrificing durability.

The new tyres construction and the shape of their tread blocks delivers improved grip and enhanced shock absorbing capacity compared to its predecessor as well as significantly improved obstacle clearing ability. For greater versatility and outstanding grip on wet ground, the ranges two latest generation compounds were designed specifically for off road use and combined with the new tread pattern, contribute actively to improving performance.

Michelin states that the Enduro Medium tyres are also 15 percent more durable, while the performance they deliver is appreciably more consistent throughout their life, a very important point when considering rubber for Roof. Finally, the new range’s compatibility with their world-renowned BIB Mousse has been improved.

What the riders say about the Michelin Enduro range

Pascal Rauchenecker (Rockstar Energy Husqvarna Factory Racing) “Michelin’s new medium – compound enduro tyre marks a big step forward, especially on slippery and stony ground where it gives you more grip and traction. It provides you with the stability and response you need to go where you want to be.” 

Antti Hellsten (Rockstar Energy Husqvarna Factory Racing) “The new medium rear Michelin Enduro has a lot of comfort and flex which both contribute to rear shock absorbing. I feel confident with this new tyre.”

A story that’s doing the rounds in the pro rider circles is about this tyre’s performance or what looked like this tyre at an international event recently where it totally wiped out the competition which as I said earlier in this article can happen, so the question I will leave you with is are we going to hear about a new technology breakthrough in in the Michelin Enduro Range stable soon.

As the second tyre choice and to keep the dualies happy we decided on the new Michelin Anakee Adventure only recently released and being part of the soft launch I was hooked up with a set in the middle of winter and needless to say with the ice warning on at 5am every morning on the way to work I am still around so let’s see what they are all about.

MICHELIN ANAKEE ADVENTURE

The Michelin Anakee Adventure product sheet states the tyre is a strategic addition to its trail tyre range, packed with technology Michelin has pulled out all the stops to address the requirements of owners of models ranging from the Honda Africa Twin, BMW GS AND Yamaha Super Tenere, to the SUZUKI V Strom, KTM Adventure, Triumph Tiger and Moto Guzzi V85TT, whether they use their bike in all weathers for travelling to work, or predominately at the weekend, not only on ordinary roads but also off road. To cover the use requirements the new comer combines new compounds, a new construction, new technologies and a new pattern to deliver superior wet and dry weather grip, handling performance, ride comfort and stability, especially at higher speeds.

Designed for 80% on road and 20% trail off road the new tyre incorporates Michelin 2CT and 2CT+ technologies that until now have only been available on Michelins on road radial tyre range, introduced in 2005 on the Power Race.

In brief 2CT (two compound technology) successfully accomplishes two conflicting ideals i.e. wear resistance in the centre and grip on the shoulders and 2CT+ which is the latest 2 compound technology which has harder rubber underneath the softer rubber on the shoulders which gives better rigidity at lean, for more stability when cornering, especially under strong acceleration. 

The Michelin Anakee Adventure chosen for the newly launched BMW R1250 GS an association between the two brands which began in 2005 with the iconic BMW GS, the new Anakee Adventure closely addresses the needs of the R1250 GS owners who tend to use their bikes on ordinary roads whilst venturing off road from time to time. Moto Guzzi have also chosen the tyre to equip their V855T due to its off-road styling with greater straight-line stability especially at higher speeds, first class agility, outstanding handling on wet roads and safety parameters that are all seen as paramount by the Italian manufacturer definable says a lot for this latest addition to the Michelin dual purpose stable.

So chaps if you are thinking of trying out a new offering in the 80/20 range, I would suggest giving the new ANAKEE adventure a go we cannot comment on durability yet as they have not been on our roads long enough as they have only been available from mid-April 2019.

I must add I have not had one of our customers back for a replacement set yet so a good sign already.

Well that’s it for now, we just want to wish all 2019 Roof riders the best of luck and for the newbies going into Bronze remember a finish alone is a fantastic achievement so make sure you investigate your rubber set up carefully as out there it makes all the difference.

In the December issue of RideFast we will be looking at some offerings out of the Pirelli stable.

Catch up then cheers

Bruce de Kock, Bike Tyre Warehouse

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