Paul Lonergan is a long time customer of Anlas dealer Torque Racing, and when asked to put our new enduro tyre the Capra EXT to the test, he jumped at the chance.
A trail riding enthusiast, Paul rides a Husaberg FE390 and after fitting the Capra EXT earlier this month he’s covered several:
Good looking tyre with a nice spread of knobbles similar to the Metzeler Six Days Extreme and on the rear there is a slight zig zag pattern ridge running from the inner to the outer row of blocks, no clue what it does but looks nice. The front is equally impressive with a high number of blocks on the outer edges.
After fitting it was a quick ride home on roads on a cold morning which induced a few involuntary spin ups on the rear but nothing butt clenching, more of a gentle release of traction and all in a very relaxed way. Road manners are pretty decent for an enduro tyre, flicking side to side the tyres profile makes a transition smooth and even with the cold tarmac and fresh out the mould rubber the front felt planted the whole time. This tyre does feel a little firmer than the Maxxis I’m used to riding with which I’m hoping will translate in to durability as the miles clock up, the only downside to this is on uneven tarmac there is a tendency for the front to tram line slightly with contours but it’s not the worst I’ve experienced by a long shot.
First ride on green lanes was the monthly meet at Torque Racing. My group for the Saturday was new TRF members made up of a couple of guys on enduro bikes who looked like they knew one end of a bike from the other, 2 brothers on big bikes who’d ridden a lot but not off road plus two of my trusted mates on there 350 Husky’s as backmarkers. Lots of sloppy mud, wet ruts and deep puddles was the order of the day and the Capra EXT’s coped brilliantly with it, never clogging up and maintaining sufficient grip to easily hoist the front up on wet grass and mud that would often just see the back spin instead.
There is a positive bite to these tyres in the mud and my first impressions weren’t wrong that the blocks on the edges really do grip well. There is one section on today’s route where we have some single track on the side of a bank with tree roots and the Capra EXT just gripped & went the only issue being I was having so much fun I made a navigation error and dropped off the bank early. Never mind spun round and going back up was as easy as coming down.
Later in the ride everyone was coping well so we took on some more challenging lanes where the water table was riding high, I’ve seen tyres get turned into useless mud doughnuts a few times on these sections but I didn’t have any such trouble the grip just kept on coming.
Two moments proved that the CapraEXT are up to the job for my level of riding. First hitting a long series of puddles at speed I came up on one with some doubt about how deep it was and not wanting to find out but with no room to avoid it I instead hit the throttle (It may not always solve the problem but as least it will end the suspense!) deciding to take the outer edge of the puddle like a berm, the unknow factor here is not my lack of riding talent but how well these tyres will take it and they were faultless making me feel like a pro.
The second moment was nearing the end of another lane, I slowed up as I only had 2 bikes behind me instead of 7, slow riding through a puddle I was checking over my shoulder when suddenly the world pitched 90 degrees to the left, or in other words I got dumped! So how is that a testimony to the tyre I hear you ask. Well it is, because after inspecting the manner of my demise it turns out there was an edge of a tree root in the puddle and whilst my focus was over my shoulder at that moment those firm out edge blocks I mentioned earlier caught a slight whiff of the root climbed up it and then pitched of the edge as my balance wasn’t in place to correct it. So once again in case you haven’t figured it out these Capra EXT do give grip.
Overall I like these tyres, bundles of grip and they are quite firm so they can be less forgiving in rutted sections (or tree roots hiding in puddles) where a softer tyre might flex to give novice rider more chance to recover. I’m looking forward to seeing how these last as the miles clock up and I’m hoping I can get out to some bigger climbs as well as trying them on some rockier terrain than just the local clay.”
You can find out more about the Capra EXT here.