I got my first mountain bike in 1991, before full suspension had been thought of, or suspension forks for that matter. I learnt my trail skills on a basic rigid Specialized Hardrock which gradually had its heavy inferior components upgraded to shiny lighter ones until it became an Orange E3 with Pace RC36 MXCD’s by 1996.

I embraced the concept the concept of full suspension with a Schwin Rocket 88 in 1998. The design was great, by unfortunately the execution wasn’t. After progressing through numerous other full sussers, I’ve settled on the Nicolai Helius – which I really like. However, despite that I had a little hankering to get back to my roots again with a hardtail – a Cove Handjob.

Its maiden ride was at the weekend at Afan Argoed. The grin factor after a lap of Skyline and Whites Level was large. I leanrt the joy of picking lines, of sprinting out of corners and diving into berms, and of course getting punished for the mistakes a full suspension bike lets you get away with 😉

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