The goal of the fastest rider in the Downhill World Cup, Amaury Pierron: To become even faster.

The goal of the manufacturer of the most successful tire in the Downhill World Cup (Magic Mary): To become even better.

The result: The fastest MTB tire in the world. Welcome, Tacky Chan!

The ambition to continue to improve even at the moment of greatest success meets the love of passionate tinkering with the smallest details. Out of this comes a tire that sets new standards and pursues no less a goal than to win every race. This benefits everyone who just wants to get going with their MTB: On the racetrack or on the home trail.

But the road to Tacky Chan was rocky. Almost three years of development, numerous prototypes and several crashes.

Schwalbe launches the project. The tire should be fast with full control and precision. On board: The Commencal/Muc-Off team around the French downhill pros Myriam Nicole, Thibaut Daprela and Amaury Pierron. Some of the best of their generation.

Schwalbe develops the first prototypes within a few weeks. The basic idea of the new tire is created in a 3D model. The profile takes shape: Small ramps on the lugs are to improve the rolling characteristics, and 20% more stable shoulder lugs than Magic Mary increase the lateral support. The tire also gets L-shaped lugs, marginally longer braking edges, and a 10% increase in distances between the center lugs reduces the weight.

The procedure for creating the first prototypes is unusual: First, Schwalbe's developers perform a total of twelve different ‘cuts’ on a model of the Big Betty. These changes help to determine the perfect balance between the support and compliance of the shoulder lugs. And indeed: The Tacky Chan reaches faster speeds, whilst the braking traction is still higher.

Off to the track: The prototype starts testing in the first races and is really fast! Thibaut Daprela chooses it for the 2021 World Championship. It rides brilliantly in practice and qualifying. But then: In the race, he crashes – twice. Nevertheless, he believes that the tire can reach the finish line. His feedback: The large lugs are a bit too stiff, too unyielding. More cornering control, please!

The next step is passionate detail work at the millimeter level: The shoulder lugs will be slightly smaller, the braking edges a millimeter longer. Double lug recesses bring closer interlocking with the ground surface.

It’s the breakthrough. The tire celebrates victory after victory: Amaury Pierron wins the 2022 World Cup overall standings with it. “We always believed that the end result would be successful, but I still felt like a little kid at Christmas when we got the tires . A lot of hard work went into making the Tacky Chan, and you can really feel that when you ride it. To have amazing grip and control without compromising speed is insane. We pushed new limits and that’s really cool.“

Myriam Nicole wins the World Cup over the infamous Black Snake in Val di Sole. One of eleven World Cup wins for the Tacky Chan in 2022, Nicole says: “The Tacky Chan gives me a very direct feel. It’s unique to have a tyre that you can truly trust when you’re right on the edge, but which also gains speed and rolls so fast.“

“If you want to make World Cup riders happy, it’s simple: you just need a tire that makes them faster. Tacky Chan benefits everyone who wants to get going and test their limits with full power”, says Carl Kämper (Product Manager MTB).

Tacky Chan is available now in different versions for downhill to enduro.

Thu 22nd Jun, 2023 @ 9:30 am

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