Jolanda Neff’s World Championships bike is a work of art This Supercaliber sets the gold standard of cross-country racing

Jolanda Neff’s World Championships bike is a work of art This Supercaliber sets the gold standard of cross-country racing

Jolanda Neff’s Supercaliber features illustrations inspired by Japanese woodblock prints

Jolanda Neff wanted her bike for World Championships in Val di Sole to invoke Japanese tranquillity: mountain mist, bamboo, ethereal skies. Trek mountain bike designer Katy Steudel took those suggestions from the Olympic champ and started studying.

‘I looked at Japanese art forms, did some concepts, and Jolanda chose from them and we took it away,’ Steudel says. ‘She knew what would be on it, but there were tweaks to the design after she saw it, and the colours look totally different in the concepts than they do in real life. She should be surprised, but pleasantly so.’

Regal AND fun

Designing Neff’s World Championship Supercaliber allowed creativity to soar for Steudel. ‘Where most production bikes have a time limit for paint and a budget to stick to, we were given free rein on design. Time was still of the essence, since we wanted to début the bike at Val di Sole,’ Steudel explains, ‘but we were able to give three times as much time and labour to perfect its design and paint as we do on our typical Project One bikes. At the end of the day, the paint scheme got the same attention to detail as our P1 Ultimate bikes.’

Steudel put in hours conceptualising and designing Neff’s Supercaliber and partnered up with painter, Kyle Doney – who has a knack for design and hosts a wealth of painting knowledge – to make her ideas a reality. Doney, a designer himself, worked closely with Steudel, providing a thoughtful sounding board for new ideas, and helping perfect techniques for shading the clouds that transcend from wispy dark mist through the bamboo forest at the bottom of the bike, to airy and bright cumulus puffs as you transition to the chroma sky.

Detailed image near the bottom bracket on bike showing golden chroma bamboo leafs and misty clouds behind it

According to Steudel, the bamboo pattern is from a folding fan that Jolanda found

SRAM XX1 crankset with Bontrager clipless pedals

Never miss an opportunity to add some shine.

Steudel says that they wanted to have plenty of gold on the bike, ‘but not too much gold.’ It certainly catches the eye, but without overwhelming it. According to Steudel: ‘I’d say the design is refined but still kind of playful and celebratory in the stylized clouds, brilliant colours and loud bamboo pattern.’

The paint job took a group effort among Steudel and several other product designers and Project One painters. It was a labour of love to get every detail just right for one of Trek Factory Racing’s most decorated and beloved athletes.

Swiss badge painted on bike

Jolanda continues to do Switzerland proud

Detail image that shows the chroma gold paint and clouds contrasting

Clean and classy cockpit

Swiss national flag stem cap

An extra hit of Swiss pride is always a big plus.

Non-driveside stays on bike

Beauty all the way down to the chainstays

Chroma gold ladybird is near the water bottle boss

A hidden ladybird adds a touch of good luck.

Jolanda Neff races on her Trek Supercaliber

Neff's already ripping up the courses on the World Cup Circuit on her Championship bike.

With Neff’s busy schedule, Steudel hasn’t yet had a chance to catch up and hear her opinion in person, but it’s safe to say that Jolanda appears to be very stoked.

Want to see Jolanda’s bike in action? Tune in to World Championships cross country action this week, and be sure to follow Trek Factory Racing XC on Instagram.

Jolanda hugging her new Championship Trek Supercaliber bike


The gold standard

Scorching the competition on the world stage, the Trek Supercaliber consistently hits the top step of the podium, earning itself a place in history as the gold standard of cross-country racing.

About the Author: Trek

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