Bike Check: Mark Scott’s Custom Santa Cruz Nomad

Bike Check: Mark Scott’s Custom Santa Cruz Nomad

Joining the Tweed Valley Bikes roster of supported riders for the 2023 Enduro World Cup season is Mark Scott. Mark is a veteran of mountain bike racing, having competed in almost every discipline from huge marathon-style events to downhill world cups and everything in between. Most people will know him for his impressive spread of Enduro racing experience and results. Having competed in the Enduro World Series every year since its inception back in 2013, missing only a handful of races across that time. 2023 sees him join the Tweed Valley Bikes family aboard his Santa Cruz Nomad. We sat down with Mark to bring you all the details of his new bike, how he sets it up and how he adapts his setup for different locations. 

Mark stands at 175cm tall, putting him right between a medium and a large frame on Santa Cruz’s online size guide. Opting for a medium frame, Mark has placed more emphasis on being able to make quick direction changes and line adjustments over out and out stability. Mark’s Nomad is slightly slacker and longer than the medium Bronson he has come from, giving a more stable ride while still preserving the snappy, agile handling of a shorter bike. A 455mm reach, 440mm rear centre and 1239mm wheelbase still gives Mark’s Nomad a relatively long chassis without becoming cumbersome on tighter, twistier trails. 

“I chose the Nomad because you get the extra agility of the MX wheels that I’ve come to love on the Bronson, but without having to sacrifice travel or geometry over the Megatower. At 175cm, the MX wheels just give me a bit of extra clearance over the rear wheel as well.”

Controlling the 170mm of front and rear suspension travel are an Öhlins RXF 38 fork and TTX 22M.2 coil shock. Joined by an Öhlins Suspension Technician in Innerleithen for a suspension setup day, Mark tested both the 36mm and 38mm stanchioned Öhlins forks, as well as doing back to back runs on their air and coil shocks, before settling on the RXF 38 and TTX 22M.2 coil shock. Won over by the stiffer chassis legs of the 38mm fork and the smooth, consistent feel of the coil shock, Mark’s baseline setup sees his fork sitting at 105psi in the main chamber with 220psi in the ramp up chamber, LSC 4 from open, HSC 1 from open and Rebound 7 from open.

A 388lb spring on his coil shock gives him just a little less than 30% sag in the rear for his 73kg weight with LSC 4 from open, HSC fully open and Rebound set 3 from open. 

As Mark’s season progresses, riding and racing at different locations will place slightly different needs on his suspension setup, requiring tweaks to air pressure and damping settings. Having a well tested baseline setup gives Mark not only a quick reference to go back to, but also confidence in making changes, knowing he can always revert back to a fully tested setup. 

A Hope bar and stem gives Mark a solid connection to the front end of his bike. Hope’s 35mm clamp bar comes with 20mm of rise and has been cut to 750mm. At home in the Tweed Valley Mark runs 25mm of spacers under his stem, adding another 5mm spacer under his stem as the trails get faster and flatter in the race calendar. A 35mm long stem keeps his cockpit nice and compact and his steering precise. 

“At home in the Tweed Valley I’ll run a relatively low front end, putting more of my body weight over the front wheel for more grip. When I go abroad and ride more bike park style trails, I tend to raise my front end by 5mm allowing me to sit slightly more in the bike. I’ll also firm up my suspension slightly, usually around 5psi for faster, more open trails.”

Hope’s Tech 4 V4 brakes give Mark maximum stopping power and great modulation.

The stunning looking Hope levers are paired with 200mm Hope floating rotors with sintered pads for the best power and heat management. 

Reserve 30|HD rims laced onto Hope Pro 4 hubs gives Mark a stiff and reliable wheelset to tackle the Enduro World Cup. Built to be the ultimate trail bike rim, the Reserve 30|HD is able to take the punishment that modern trail and enduro bikes can dish out, while still being incredibly lightweight, making accelerating and decelerating that bit easier. 

A Maxxis DHF/DHR II combo is Mark’s only connection to the trail. As a Maxxis supported rider, Mark is testing a DHR II in 2.5” wide, slightly wider than the 2.4” standard width. Noticing a slightly more damped ride over the 2.4”, Mark has kept going back to the DHR II in 2.5” as his go to rear tyre. Up front, a DHF is left on for the majority of the year, only changing to a Shorty if it’s very wet and sloppy. 

“For me, having a bike that feels consistent throughout the year is really important. Limiting variables by running the same tyres through a wide range of conditions lets me focus on other aspects of my bike. After using the DHF/DHR II combo for such a long period of time I feel really comfortable with how they’re going to ride in all sorts of trail conditions.”

SRAM X01 AXS and Hope components make up Mark’s drivetrain. A 10-52t cassette driven by a 34t chainring on 165mm Hope EVO cranks gives him a wide range to see him through the longest days on the Enduro World Cup calendar. 

Mark’s Nomad Full Spec

Frame - Santa Cruz Nomad CC, Medium

Fork - Öhlins RXF 38, 105psi in main chamber, 220psi in ramp up chamber, LSC: 4 from open, HSC: 1 from open, Rebound: 7 from open

Shock - Öhlins TTX 22M.2 coil shock, 388lb spring, LSC: 4 from open, HSC fully open, Rebound: 3 from open

Wheelset - Reserve 30|HD rims on Hope Pro 4 hubs

Tyres - Front: Maxxis DHF, DH Casing, MaxxGrip Rear: Maxxis DHRII, DH Casing, MaxxGrip

Brakes - Hope Tech 4 V4 with 200mm Hope floating rotors

Drivetrain - SRAM X01 AXS rear mech with 10-52t cassette

Chainring - Hope 34t

Cranks - Hope EVO 165mm

Dropper post - Rockshox Reverb AXS 150mm

Saddle - Fi:Zik Gravita 

Bar - Hope Carbon Handlebar, 35mm clamp, 20mm rise, 750mm wide

Grips - Santa Cruz House grips

Stem - Hope Gravity stem, 35mm clamp, 35mm reach

For more information on our Nomad stock, or to discuss a custom build of your own, give us a call or drop by our shop in Innerleithen.

01896 831 429

1 comment

  • Peter Stroll

    High or low setting?

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