René Wildhaber has been called the Swiss Muscle by his fans and the Modest Pro by his sponsors, but we know him best for his many podiums and video segments. These days, René’s focus during the riding season is the EWS series. He tackles these events on a 27.5 Trek Slash, which he was heavily involved in developing.
His frame is completely stock, except for the Trek Factory Racing paint scheme and decals.
The cockpit setup is relatively normal, but you will notice a few small details. For example, he has mastic tape over his Fox D.O.S.S. lever to help with grip in the wet. There’s also a thick strip of tape wrapped around his handlebar for emergency repairs.
Under his handlebar, he has mounted a small tube for carrying a Dynaplug Tubeless Repair kit.
Like many EWS pros, René keeps a sticker mounted to his top tube with the start times for stages. This one has been mounted to his frame since the Emerald Enduro held last month, where he came in 29th overall.
One trick item on this Slash is this custom Garmin mount. Trek 3D printed a small number of these units for testing, but never brought to market. René likes this mount because it keeps his GPS unit tucked out of the way, while still easy to read.
If you hadn’t noticed, René prefers to ride without a backpack. That’s why he keeps a number of tools strapped to his frame.
While Tracy Mosely prefers a 2x drivetrain, Wildhaber uses a 1x Di2 XTR setup. For training rides. he generally uses a smaller 30 or 32T chainring, but will go up to a 36T for race day.
One incredibly important tool for training and racing is a power meter. This unit from Stages allows Wildhaber and his trainer to dissect his runs to ensure he’s at his most efficient.
Wildhaber finished in the top ten overall during the first two seasons of the EWS. Injuries last year prevented him from racing all eight rounds, which pushed him down the standings into 18th for the season – hence the plate number.
René pairs his 1x XTR Di2 drivetrain with an 11-42 XT cassette because it has a slightly wider range than the lighter XTR model.
Many of the tracks on the enduro circuit resemble full-blown DH courses, so Saint brakes and large rotors are an absolute must for René.
Considering how rough the tracks are, tire choice is critical. One flat can make or break a weekend, so in addition to keeping Dynaplugs handy, René runs DH rated tires. For some events, he may switch to a lighter casing, but he prefers to play it safe.
In general, he tends to run his front suspension relatively stiff and keep the rear end softer. This pays off on steep terrain and also offers a small margin of safety when overcooking turns or drops. To learn more about René or see how he’s fairing this season, check out his website here.