I had my first ride on a Specialized Demo 7 last week. I rode with Mr. Willows in the cold November rain. I started on my Demo 8, it was my first ride on it since I crashed hard in August. It was quite a house of pain chasing lung boy up the Fromme fireroad. His Demo 7 is a couple of pounds lighter than my 8 (41 for him, 43 for me) which is my excuse for riding slower on the uphill – that and the fact that I like to stay away from the smell of Rig’s unwashed bike gear.
I rode my 8 down Bukwus, a gnarly old school mostly natural trail. After remembering the feel of that bike I took Jerry’s Demo 7 prototype down another old school trail called Crippler. I immediately noticed how well the 7 floated over the choppy rocks and roots. It responded quickly and felt strong and stiff in the corners, especially steep turns. Even though it didn’t seem like as cushy a ride as the 8 it felt like a more appropriate frame for the shore. It popped in and out of tight turns faster than the 8. After Crippler I got back on my 8 for the final rip down Lower Crippler. I still enjoyed the squishy feel the 8 had, how it tracked well over the terrain, how well it did at speed but I kept going back to the responsiveness of the 7. If I could have a DH rig for Whistler, a 7 for the Shore and my Enduro for all the big climb rides I would be a happy spoiled boy.