Christian Meier’s Mad Max inspired ‘All Terrain Exploration Rig’

The custom build for the Atlas Mountain Race is “hungry for scratches and scars”

February 11th, 2020 by | Posted in Bikes+Frames | Tags: , , , ,

Retired professional cyclist and co-owner of The Service Course Christian Meier has collaborated with Belle Cycles to build a completely unique bike. The fully custom rig was created with the demands of the Atlas Mountain Race in mind, and the bike, named The All Terrain Exploration Rig (A.T.E.R.), looks like it’s ready to take on a wide variety of off-road terrain.

Christian Meier rides the A.T.E.R. Photo: The Service Course / @theservicecourse

The race

The Atlas Mountain Race is a fixed route, unsupported, single-stage event. Starting in Marrakesh, riders cross the Moroccan Atlas then ride through the Anti-Atlas and to Agadir. The terrain is almost entirely gravel, single or double track and old colonial pistes.

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“The Atlas Mountain Race will be a special experience and I expect it to be very demanding,” says Meier. “The A.T.E.R. is something I had been thinking about for a while, and the Atlas Mountain Race was the perfect excuse to go for it.”

Enrico “Kico” Bellé Photo: The Service Course /@theservicecourse

The bike

A.T.E.R’s steel frame features a carbon integrated seat post and custom Bastion seat-post topper. Built on 29″ wheels with clearance for MTB tires, the wheels are Enve M630 rims laced to a Son dynamo front hub and DT Swiss 240 rear hub. The bike also has a rigid Enve MTB fork and CeramicSpeed headset.

When creating the bike, Enrico “Kico” Bellé, of Belle Cycles, wanted to keep the demands of the race at the front of the design. “On this particular bike, I was thinking of the natural stability added by the big wheels,” he says. “I went for a lower than my average trail valor to keep the bike alive, especially when it’s eventually front loaded. I also drew a higher than average BB, as I wanted no issues with pedal strike.”

Photo: The Service Course / @theservicecourse

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To get through the Morrocan Atlas, Meier will be running a Shimano GRX Di2 groupset along with Ingrid cranks. The diverse terrain he will be riding warrants a 40 tooth chainring and 10/46 cassette. CeramicSpeed titanium jockey wheels and coated bottom bracket complete the drivetrain.

Enve compact road bars plus clip on aero bars, King Cage steel bottle cages, Vittoria Terreno Dry 2.25 tires, a Fabric Scoop Flat saddle and Son headlight all add style and function to the bike.Frame bags were custom built for Meier by Cordel.

Mad Max

“The project was inspired by Mad Max,” says Meier, “and the idea of being chased through the wild, remote desert.” Influenced by the “The War Rig” seen in Mad Max, Barcelona-based painter Kilian Ramirez Caballero designed the custom bike with beaten up, rusty paintwork and a skull head badge.

Photo: The Service Course / @theservicecourse

The final result is a rustic looking machine, ready to take on any terrain. “The bike is not fancy or beautiful,” says Bellé, “it is a one-of-a-kind beast, hungry for scratches and scars.”