World Cup DH racing is already three rounds in, but for privateers who may just be starting their summer race season, consumer-direct Vitus has a revised Dominer DH bike that could shave seconds off your runs. At first glance it exactly like the old bike in a new color. But inside a new linkage completely reshapes suspension performance, plus it gets some geometry updates.
2019 Vitus Dominer alloy DH mountain bike
The Dominer is pretty much what you would expect for a downhill bike from the consumer-direct Wiggle/Chain Reaction family – high on value, low on cost. What you get is a 200mm travel, triple-butted 6061 alloy DH bike with a true Horst Link four-bar suspension setup, and a solid quality build-spec. Vitus says it mixes the best design character of their “highly acclaimed Sommet [enduro] platform, [adding] more travel and a downhill specific tubeset to create the ultimate race-ready DH rig”.
But the real news here is the overhauled suspension design of the otherwise carry-over bike. Beyond just adding new trunnion-mount, metric shock compatibility, the new bike gets completely different kinematics for optimized suspension performance. Starting with the Horst link design, the forward main & chainstay pivots are mostly untouched – still retaining the lower shock mount on an extended section of the swingarm, inside of the split lower seattube.
But a revised seatstay pivot & all-new rocker arm were designed to produce a more progressive feel to the updated DH bike.
Revised suspension kinematics
Looking at the suspension kinematics comparison Vitus provided vs. last year’s bike, the new bike (left, blue) has a constant shock leverage ratio vs. the previous (left, pink) bike’s initial regressive ratio. While you probably won’t notice that first bit sitting on the bike as you already sag past it, it does mean that with effectively the same forces put into the bike (right, new in blue vs. old in pink) the new bike will have a more consistent supportive feel on the trail, will maintain grip when you lighten the bike up lifting it over obstacles, and have more of a bottomless feel on the big hits (right, new in red vs. old in brown).
The overall pivot location tweaks are also said to result in less anti-squat for better small bump compliance, and more early anti-rise for better cornering on the brakes.
The 200mm alloy bike features 27.5″ wheels, a tapered 1.5″ internal headset, external cable routing, a threaded 83mm bottom bracket, 12x150mm rear axle, 31.6mm seatpost & ISCG 05 tabs.
Aggressive Downhill Geometry
Vitus gives the new bike what they call Aggressive Downhill Geometry. That essentially amounts to taking the same old DH race-ready geometry of the previous bike, and adding 10-15mm of reach & 1mm of chainstay length (plus the longer wheelbases). Otherwise the 63° head angle remains the same, and all three sizes offer the same stack number so riders size on reach alone.
Pricing & availability
The Dominer is available in a single complete bike build for £2500, knocking two hundred quid off of last year’s model thanks to a more budget-friendly build spec. It now comes in just three sizes, axing the longest version that was only for the very tall.
For international buyers that comes out to $3000 / 2800€ with a RockShox Boxxer RC air fork, Super Deluxe RC coil shock, Shimano Zee 1×10 drivetrain & SRAM Guide RE brakes, along with an alloy finishing kit. Get it from Vitus, through their Chain Reaction Cycles & Wiggle direct-to-consumer sales channels worldwide.