10/10/2020 - Kelly-Jayne's Cotic Escapade Pregnancy Flat Bar Conversion

Cotic Escapade - The Pregnancy Version

Our Brand Ambassador Kelly-Jayne Emmerson is pregnant, but she's been determined to keep riding. For the first half of her pregnancy she has been getting out, and sticking to more tame terrain aboard her Shimano Gravel Union Cotic Escapade.

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Kelly-Jayne, 28 weeks pregnant with her Cotic Escapade, in regular drop bar guise with full GRX800 2x drivetrain

Now well into her third trimester, Kelly was getting too uncomfortable grabbing for the drops, and needed a much more upright position to keep her comfy and rolling on the trails. So, the idea was hatched to do a flat bar conversion on her Escapade. This isn't something we usually recommend as for most riders it would result in a position far too short and upright, but short and upright is exactly what is needed in later pregnancy when a rider needs to make space for bump. Kell says....

ďDo you know what, Iím so happy that Iím still riding, so many women that Iíve spoken to told me that they had to stop at around 25 weeks, just Ďcos it was so uncomfortable, so I feel really lucky that the guys have hooked me up. It would be so boring if I couldnít go out riding. Just getting out there.Ē

It wasn't the work of a minute to do the change, as these days drop bar and MTB drivetrains are almost entirely lacking in cross-compatibility. In the end, after much discussion between Cotic and Gravel Union sponsors Shimano, we went for an XT 8100 1x12 drivetrain, SLX brakes with flat mount to post mount caliper adapters, Cotic Calver MTB riser bars cut down to 720mm and a diddy PRO Tharsis 35mm stem.

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ďItís awesome, so upright. I donít have to lean forwards at all which makes it so comfortable, Ďcos itís got such a short stem and the flat bars just makes such a difference. My thighs were hitting my bump when I had drop bars which really wasnít ideal, so Iíd have my legs spread open wide way too much and be really uncomfortable cycling, so yeah, Iím really happy now.Ē

Kelly-Jayne Emmerson Cotic Escapade flat bar conversion, Cotic Escapade, gravel bike, steel gravel bike, steel is real, Shimano GRX, riding when pregnantKelly-Jayne Emmerson Cotic Escapade flat bar conversion, Cotic Escapade, gravel bike, steel gravel bike, steel is real, Shimano GRX, riding when pregnant
Kelly-Jayne Emmerson Cotic Escapade flat bar conversion, Cotic Escapade, gravel bike, steel gravel bike, steel is real, Shimano GRX, riding when pregnant

We're wishing Kelly-Jayne all the very best for the rest of her pregnancy and beyond. If you're pregnant, then we hope this has inspired you to keep getting out on your bike if you can. What an exciting time!


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Read more about Kelly-Jayne's cycling adventures here…