San Luis Obispo, hometown to Art’s cyclery was lucky enough to play host to two riders from the Luna Pro Team this past week. Former world champion Catherine Pendrel and teammate Maghalie Rochette set up shop in between the Mellow Johhny’s Classic in Austin, Texas, and the US Pro Cup race in San Dimas, California. While it didn’t take them long to fly by us on the trails, we were able to get a good look at the rigs they were running. Here, we have a closer look at Luna newcomer Maghalie Rochette’s Orbea Alma 27.5 and her path to the Luna Pro Team.
Getting her start in triathlon, Rochette soon moved to road, then to cyclocross where she experienced early success, going on to compete at the 2013 UCI Cyclocross World Championships in Louisville, Kentucky. Then, experimenting with mountain-bike racing, Maghalie caught the attention of fellow Canadian and now-teammate Catharine Pendrel.
“For me, I think everything happened at last year’s World Championships in South Africa,” Rochete notes. “I got the chance to meet Catharine and rode a couple of times with her. She talked to Waldek [Stepinowski], who is the manager of LUNA, about me and he asked to meet with me. We talked a little bit before the race and he told me he would watch my race. Fortunately, my race went well and I grabbed the 9th spot in the U23 women. We then met again at Interbike after Cross Vegas, and everything got official at that moment.”
When it comes to her team bike, Rochette chooses the quick and capable Orbea Alma 27.5 hardtail.
“I am not a very tall person, and I think this size of wheel fits me better. I also have the chance to ride on the Shimano XTR group, which means that the shifting is always immediate and you can really count on the effectiveness of the braking.”
We have a hard time finding fault with this reasoning ourselves, and couldn’t exactly imagine a bike all too different for our racing druthers.
Frame: Orbea Alma 27.5
Fork: Fox 32 Float 100 FIT iCD Tapered QR15 Kashima
Headset: FSA 1-1/8 – 1-1/2″ Integrated
Wheels: Custom Build around Shimano XTR Hubs
Brakes: Shimano XTR Race M985
Crankset: Shimano XTR M980
Cassette: Shimano XTR M980
Chain: Shimano XTR HG95
Bottom Bracket: Shimano Press Fit BB91 MTB
Shift Levers: Shimano M980 XTR Dyna-Sys
Front Derailleur: Shimano M980 XTR
Rear Derailleur: Shimano XTR M
Seatpost: PRO XCR
Saddle: Selle Italia SLR
Stem: PRO Vibe 7S
Handlebars: PRO XCR Carbon OS
Tires: F: Maxxis Crossmark 2.1, R: Maxxis Crossmark 2.1
Pedals: Shimano PD-M980 XTR XC Race
Grips: PRO Vanderham Star Series