Challenge Grifo XS 33 Cross Tire - Clincher $79.99
Built for hardpack cyclocross courses.
Depending on your geographical location, when the smell of beer and waffles hits the air, cyclocross courses with hardpack and sand might be more common than the traditional mud courses synonymous with 'cross. And though we dream of mud-stained faces and bikes, the reality of cross is of dry, fast courses and the need for tires that are able to handle it. For these races, we rely on the file-shaped tread of the Challenge Grifo XS Cross Clincher tires to help us zip across pavement sections and grip on sharp turns.
The file tread that you see down the middle of the Grifo tire is better suited for dry climates where the early season is filled with hard, sandy courses, and the late season is marked by hard snow and ice. Though the file tread keeps the tires rolling fast, dry courses still require a tire with superb grip for cornering. Evenly spaced knobs lining the sides of the tire add traction where you need it, so you're able to hold your speed as you maneuver through turns.
For durability, the Grifo was constructed from a highly puncture-resistant and lightweight Super Poly casing. The bead of the tire uses an open tubular design. We know that it sounds like an oxymoron -- a tubular clincher. However, the benefits of Challenge Grifo XS Cross Clincher tires are astounding. They use the same hand-made construction techniques tubular. Basically, Challenge glues the tread on the casing while it's inflated on a wheel in order to prevent uneven tension when inflated on your wheel. The only difference is that instead of being sewn, beads are actually formed by folding the casing around Aramid fibers. What's Aramid? Aramid is used for the tire beads for the same reason that it's used for bullet-proof vests -- its lightweight, compact strength.
The Challenger Grifo XS Cross Clincher tire is available in a 700c x 33mm size in the color Black/tan. Please note that he Grifo's tread pattern is intended to be mounted in either direction. Should you require heavy traction, say in slightly wet conditions, Challenge recommends that you mount the tire with the tread orientation facing backwards. For 'normal' race conditions, mount with the tread rolling forward. Regardless, you'll be rolling fast.