Even though the Momsen VIPA is still in prototype form, that didn’t stop Nico Pfitzenmaier from racing it to victory in the 2013 Cape Epic Masters category. That earns Nico the title of the 2nd most stage victories in the 10 year history of the Cape Epic, second only to Christophe Sauser. Nico raced to victory with his partner as team Bridge beating out the 2012 winner and Olympic MTB champ Bart Brentjens in the process. Not only did Team Bridge win the Masters division, they also came in 11th overall besting factory teams including Scott Swiss Power MTB – not bad for the bike’s first outing.
According to Victor Momsen, Nico has been a fan of the hardtail, though after riding the VIPA at Momsen’s HQ, he was convinced to ride the dually for the Cape Epic. Clearly the bike is pretty dialed as it is, though Momsen is using the testing and race feed back to tweak the final design before production.
Full bike check of the winning VIPA after the break.
The bike Nico rode to victory is built around 29 inch wheels with stock Stan’s ZTR Crest wheels set up tubeless of course with Schwalbe Racing Ralphs with Snake Skin casing – which is the tire casing for the Cape Epic according to Momsen.Victor mentioned Nico had the choice of lighter wheels, but chose to ride the Stock Stan’s on account of their blend of durability and light weight.
You’ll notice that in our original post we struck out that the VIPA is a 29er, there is still no official word on wheel size so we’ll have to wait and see…
In the video you might have caught the screw driver looking thing taped to the stem, which is actually a tubeless tire plug tool. The thing that looks like a stick is a rubber plug that is stuffed into the cut in the tire and effectively seals the hole – a slightly faster method than repair kits like Hutchinson’s Rep’air. Seeing as how punctures and snake bites are the most common mechanical at the Cape, having the tools ready for quick repair is critical. There is also a spare tube taped to the top tube and a can of sealant on the seatpost.
The team is supported by SRAM and Rock Shox, so an XX drive train and brakes are used with the exception of Rotor Rings that are shifted with an X0 2×10 front derailleur. Nico was running Look S-Track pedals as well.
ESI grips are a popular choice among many racers, which sit next to a Pop-Loc for the SID front fork.
Interesting way to keep your bottle cage from either spreading too far apart, or to make it tighter – electrical tape. Even without a remote lock out on the rear shock, Nico was extremely happy with the performance of the VIPA in spite of his love of hard tails.
If you’re heading out to the Sea Otter Classic and want to see a VIPA in person, Serfas USA will have a 19″ on display at their booth.