Schwalbe tires put to the test

Written by Matt Hayes
Created Date: Thursday, 19 August 2010 15:02

Schwalbe might not be the first name that comes up when thinking of mountain bike tires, but that will soon change. With several new models out this year and excellent performance they are making their name known. I have been riding a combination of a front Nobby Nic and a rear Racing Ralph.

The Nobby Nic is a more aggressive tire with bigger, wider spaced tread. It has great traction in all conditions including loose, rocky, and wet terrain. The Racing Ralph has a combination of smaller, closer spaced knobs in the center and bigger, more aggressive tread on the sides. This gives a fast rolling, smooth center section and still provides good cornering traction. The Nobby Nic/Racing Ralph combo has been a great set up, with low rolling resistance, awesome traction, and predictable handling.

With two 24 hour adventure races, a 3 day expedition race, and lots of training miles on them, they are still in great shape and I haven’t had a flat tire. The small center blocks of the Racing Ralph are showing a bit of wear but the side knobs and bigger tread of the Nobby Nic show minimal wear and no cuts or tears. That's amazing for such a light tire combo after so many miles. For a fast, aggressive set of tires, the Nobby Nic and Racing Ralph would be tough to beat.