5 of 6 customers found this review helpful.
I used this as my front tire for Dirty Kanza 2014 and it performed flawlessly. I've previously used Kenda Happy Mediums and while you absolute can't go wrong with the Kendas, I found the X'Plor MSO to give me the same traction and ride quality on loose steep gravel roads in a much narrower size. For me, the X'Plor at 32 mm performed as well as the Happy Medium in 40 mm, which gives it a big advantage in speed over a long day. It seemed like the X'Plor had better vibration damping than the Happy Medium as well.
The tire is very stable at all speeds and throughout the varied terrain of the DK, and in fact I'm sure the excellent traction and ride stability saved me from crashing at one point in the race. I hit a very steep downhill section and suddenly both lanes were insanely washboarded out and a guy was in front of me in the only smooth track in the center. I went over to the extreme edge to avoid hitting the other guy and the gravel there was very loose in a ridge bladed up by the grader at some point. I have no idea how the bike held without going over the edge or sliding sideways, but I actually felt in control almost the whole time. Almost.
I would absolutely buy this tire again, and will continue to run them on the front for training and gravel racing. Given that I blew out the X'Plor USH 120 TPI on the back after about 300 miles, though, I suspect the X'Plor MSO might not be suitable for the back. I haven't used it there, so don't know that for sure. I just know that 90% of my flats as well as those I see during DK are on the back, so a heavy tire there is definitely warranted.
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