The Salsa El Mariachi has been one of our favorite bikes for two years. We've got well over dozen bikes out there in that time, and while between the three builds and multiple frame colors there is certainly a lot of choice, it's proven to be a bike people simply love to make their own. From cool builds, to fancy parts and stripped down looks, they are as unique as the riders on them.
One of the first El Mariachi's out of the shop was our Jason Whittaker's singlespeed. It was bone stock, but JW's favorite bike. The bike is simplicity defined; rigid, one speed, steel, go ride and come back with a healthy appetite in a few hours. It was so solid a ride that JW finally built up his dream bike. Armed with an El Mariachi Ti frame, he tossed on XT parts, ENVE wheels and 9 more gears to finish off the perfect Northern Michigan bike.
Craig Fortuna, too, hopped onto an El Mariachi after hearing of Matt Harris' bike. Matt, was destroying carbon bikes at a genocidal pace, with all problems solved with Salsa steel. Fortuna followed suit, and stripped off the logos from the frame and fork to make it look sleek and stealthy. He even discovered a passion for not shifting; his El Mar spent much of the summer with the bike set up as a singlespeed. After nabbing a carbon fork from another bike, it's now his 22 pound, steel race rig that has served him with distinction at Peak2Peak and will be the weapon of choice at Iceman.
The latest special El Mariachi build is Wes' Tequila Lime. It's the bike that has got him back in the woods and into the race scene. He'll be making his first race appearance since spring at Iceman, and he's tossed in a special chain ring that should suit his powerful, efficient pedaling style. He's one of a number of riders to convert to elliptical chain rings this fall, using a 32t Wolf Tooth elliptical ring on his new rig, along with a Michelin Wild Rac'r rear tire and a Schwalbe Racing Ralph 2.25 up front.