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Pro Team Tech 2004

Reviewed December 11, 2004

Marc Gullickson's Signature Redline Conquest Pro Ti

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Photo ©: Steve Medcroft

Going out in style

By Anthony Tan

At the U.S. Gran Prix of Cyclocross stop in Highland Park, New Jersey, Steve Medcroft caught up with legendary 'cross pro Marc Gullickson, who will end his season and career on a machine that befits a rider of Gully's reputation and caliber: Redline's Conquest Pro Ti.

Gully rolls
Photo ©: Steve Medcroft
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Keep it simple
Photo ©: Steve Medcroft
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FSA up front
Photo ©: Steve Medcroft
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Empella Frog Legs
Photo ©: Steve Medcroft
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Crank Brothers' Egg Beaters
Photo ©: Steve Medcroft
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Recently, Marc Gullickson said that immediately following this month's U.S. Cyclocross Nationals, he will end his cyclocross, mountain bike and road-racing careers and turn his attention to coaching. It is fitting that Gully's career will end with a cyclocross race. No discipline knows him better.. He's won a national championship, the old Super Cup series, been a member of the U.S. world's team six times and, at one point, was the highest-listed American in UCI world cyclocross rankings.

Even into his last season, he's remained competitive, coming second in the first U.S. Gran Prix of Cyclocross and finishing fifth on the overall series standings. It has been this kind of journeyman's approach to the sport that has earned Gully the respect of competitors, sponsors and fans alike.

We wanted to get a closer look at the bike Gully fought his final season with: a Redline Conquest Pro Ti that, in an ultimate show of loyalty and respect from Redline, carries Gullickson signature on the top tube.

"The Conquest Pro Ti is basically the same geometry Redline's had on the Conquest Pro aluminum for years," Gullickson says about his frame.

"I liked the geometry of the aluminum bike a lot so we didn't alter it for the Ti version. Except that the clearance is a little better - they're able to bend the Ti stays a little more than aluminum to give me better room under the bottom bracket. The bike's not quite as light as the Conquest Pro either, but it's such a nicer ride that it's worth the quarter pound or so of extra weight to me."

For his drivetrain, Gullickson sticks with Shimano Dura Ace 10-speed. "I run a 42 single front ring [unlike may other competitors who use dual front chainrings to maximize gear choices] because it seems like if I have a double front chainring, I end up with one chainring too big and one chainring too small," he says. "One is just simpler. It's cleaner."

As for non-drivetrain components, Gully picked up a sponsorship from carbon-fiber specialist, Full Speed Ahead (FSA) Components. "FSA makes great stuff all the way around." How does FSA's Team Issue carbon crankset hold up to the pounding of cyclocross? "No problems at all," Gullickson says.

Finally, Reynold's Cross Stratus DV wheels help him roll right along. "They're basically road wheels with a few extra spokes," Gullickson says. "They're super light and strong."

One difference in Gully's wheels to those of many of his competitors is that he runs only 30mm tires. "Hutchinson clinchers," he says. You'd think that running a narrower-than-standard tire would call for higher air pressures to stave off pinch flats but Gullickson says he's quite comfortable with "40 pounds of pressure in the rear and 35 in the front." And, "I just check it by feel most of the time," he assures us. I guess you learn a few things after 15 years' racing.

Photography

Images by Steve Medcroft

  • Marc Gullickson's signature model Redline Conquest Pro Ti.
  • Gully rolls on Reynold's Cross Stratus DV hoops.
  • Keep it simple - Gullickson uses just one chainring up front, bolted to FSA's Carbon Team Issue cranks.
  • FSA up front - bars, stem and headset are all FSA, with Shimano 10 speed giving Gully the necessary gear ratios without the need for two chainrings.
  • Empella Frog Legs provide the stopping power. Also note the chunky cross-section of Reynold's 'cross-specific Ouzo carbon fork.
  • Crank Brothers' Egg Beaters appear to be the pedal of choice among the elite in the US 'cross scene.

Full specification

Frame: Redline Conquest Pro Ti
Fork: Reynolds Ouzo Pro Cross
Colour: Polished titanium

Cranks: FSA Carbon Team Issue
Front derailleur: N/A
Rear derailleur: Shimano Dura-Ace 10 speed
Brakes: Empella Frog Legs
Levers: Shimano Dura-Ace 10 speed
Rear sprockets: Shimano Dura-Ace 10 speed, 12-27

 

Wheels: Reynolds Cross Stratus DV
Tyres: Hutchinson Pro Series Gold, 700x30

Stem: FSA OS-115
Bars: FSA RD-200
Headset: FSA Integrated

Pedals: Crank Brothers Eggbeaters Triple Ti
Seat post: FSA K-force Light
Saddle: Fi'zi:k Pave

Total bike weight: 17.5 pounds (approx.)