2022 ENDURO SHOOTOUT
CANNONDALE JEKYLL 1 REVIEW
THE RACEY MID-HIGH PIVOT
Photos by Dusten Ryen
Shootout Sponsored by Maxxis Tires & Fox Racing
Cannondale is a brand that has long marched to the beat of their own drum, for better or worse. This tendency towards the obscure has kept their lineup unique for years, but it’s when they work within the realm of what we consider normal that my interest is piqued – must mean they’re onto something. This is mostly the case with their new Jekyll; sure it’s a high(ish) pivot with a funky shock cavity in the downtube, but in many ways it looks and feels like some of the more typical bikes on the market. But does it ride like any old bike? We were excited to have it in the mix of our 2022 Enduro Bike Shootout to find out how it stacks up.
We’d like to thank Fox Racing and Maxxis Tires for their support in making this series possible. Without their partnership these types of projects wouldn’t be possible, if you feel so inclined, offer them a thanks down below! And while you’re at it check out Fox’s new 2023 Product Line and Maxxis’ performance MTB tires here.
• 165mm Mid-High Horst Link Suspension
• HTA 64
• STA 77.5 (effective)
• REACH 475mm (Large)
Price: $4,550 (Jekyll 2) – $6,150 (Jekyll 1)
The Jekyll is a bike we’ve already covered extensively in both a Dissected and review format, so I’ll leave those up here for any detailed Lab references you may need. The cliff’s notes are as follows: 29” wheels on both ends; 165mm of rear travel delivered through a high pivot on the lower end of the spectrum; a 170mm travel fork; modern enduro bike geometry; no proprietary Cannondale parts or trickery, and a pretty solid spec for the price.
Though we’ve already covered the Jekyll quite extensively, there are a few points worth noting that were found over some extensive riding. First off is just how quick this bike is when you’re riding committed. It really feels as though it’s meant for racing. We found that if you are ever riding too lazily on the bike, i.e., not pushing through sections and committing to lines, it would get noticeably more nervous and harsh feeling – likely due to the fact that the rear end needs to get past a bit of a breakaway point to start feeling supple. Again, this wasn’t noticeable as long as you were pushing through the pedals, however the trick to success is maintaining that when things get rougher.
Climbing was just fine, a bit better than the Range but behind some of the sprightlier bikes like the Orbea Rallon and Canfield Lithium. Our tester Dario took it out on a couple rides in the 6000’-7000’ range and reported that it wasn’t tiring enough to make the descents a struggle. That said, it’s certainly a bit slower to get you to the drop-in. Conversely, it rides flowier sections of trail like a bike with far less bump-eating performance, pumping and jumping with ease. The combination of this flow trail mannerism with its ability to plow through rougher sections of trail is what makes it one of the top choices for a race bike out of the lineup.
The Wolf’s Last Word
It may be a high pivot, and it may be a Cannondale, but there’s nothing too strange about the way the Jekyll performs on trail – it’s fast, fun, and intuitive. We really enjoyed riding this bike and found it to be one of the top options when it came time to pick a race bike but falls slightly short of bikes like the Specialized Enduro and Canfield Lithium for riding in a more casual setting.
Weight: 35.6 lbs
Frame: Carbon fiber; 165mm
Fork: Fox Float Factory 38, 170mm, 44mm offset
Shock: Fox Float Factory X2, 205×65 Metric Trunnion
Brakes: SRAM Code RSC, 220F/200R Centreline rotors
Handlebar: Cannondale 1 Riser, Carbon, 30mm rise, 8° sweep, 5° rise, 780mm
Headset: Integrated Sealed Bearing, Tapered
Saddle: Fabric Scoop Shallow Elite, hollow cro-mo rails
Seatpost: Cannondale DownLow Dropper, 31.6mm, 125mm (S), 150mm (M), 170mm (L-XL)
Shifter: SRAM GX Eagle; 12s
Stem: FSA Grid 35, 35mm
Wheelset: WTB KOM Trail i30 TCS/ (F) Formula 15mm / (R) SRAM MTH 700, XD; 110/148
Front tire: Maxxis Assegai, 29 x 2.5″, 3C compound, EXO+
Rear tire: Maxxis Minion DHR II, 29 x 2.4″, EXO+
Bottom Bracket: SRAM DUB Threaded
Cassette: SRAM XG 1275; 10-52T
Cranks: SRAM X1 Eagle, Boost, DUB, 30T
Derailleur: SRAM GX Lunar Eagle; 12s
High pivot benefits with few of the drawbacks
Great support through turns and off jumps
Rewards committed riding
Requires committed riding to perform
Challenging shock adjustment
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