Absolute wizardry from team pro Johnny Raekes!
After Johnny Raekes’ last edit, “No Sleep Out East”, it’s safe to say he’s solidified himself as one of the top amateur riders in the game! Johnny is at the forefront of progression, pushing the crankflip into never before seen combos! We caught up with Johnny to see what he’s riding, and why! Check it out.
Frame: Fiend Colin 21
Forks: Animal 26mm offset
Bars: Animal Empire State 9.5
Stem: Animal Inverse
Front wheel: Fiend cab flangeless
Tires: Animal GLH 2.3
Seat post: Fiend
Seat: Fiend JJ tripod
Cranks: Fiend 160
Pedals: Mark Gralla Rat Trap Pedals
Sprocket: Fiend Colin 25t
Chain: Animal Hoder Chain
Back wheel: Fiend Cab coaster
Bottom bracket: Fiend
Pegs: Animal Benny L
What parts on your bike are you most psyched on right now and why?
I’d say I’m most hyped on the new Rat Trap pedals. They have a nice wide platform with a perfect amount of pins. They feel so good for things like tailwhips and crankflips. The wide platform makes it a lot easier to catch pedals and to spot your pedals when they come around.
How do the Rat Trap Pedals compare to Pedals you’ve run in the past?
The Rat Trap pedals have to be my favorite pedals I’ve ever had. Other pedals that I’ve tried in the past have had a really small platform, making it uncomfortable for my feet. I always wished I had a pedal with more pins as well, and the Rat Traps are exactly that. They have a great sized platform and a lot more pins than the average pedal. The corner pins are perfect, so often with other pedals if you land a little sideways or with your feet a little bit out of place you’ll slide right off. But with the corner pins your feet stay locked on, even when over rotating a 3 or catching a whip with your feet a bit out of place.
You recently switched over to GLH tires in the front and back, how have they been feeling?
Ya I’d always loved how the GLH tires looked and have always heard about how long lasting they are. So it was really exciting to throw them on, I haven’t ridden them for very long yet but I’ve been loving them so far.
You’re riding Colin Varanyak’s signature Empire State Bars, what are your favorite things about them?
I’ve been riding Colin’s Empire State bars for quite awhile now. I recently went up to the 9.5 rise which is the tallest I’ve ever ran and have been loving them. I’ve honestly never paid attention much to bar geometry but I’ve always loved the way these bars have felt and looked ever since I first got them.
What are some specifics of how you like your bike set up?
The thing I’m most picky about on my bike is how responsive it feels. The Varanyak frame really helps with just about everything I do, the short back end makes everything so much quicker and easier. My cranks and chain always have to be loose. It feels so good being able to do crankflips without ever worrying about if they will come around or not. That feeling is never really possible with a really tight chain or cranks. Short cranks, plastic pegs, and a top load stem are also essentials for my bike.
Go into the Fall prepared with our Loud Pack backpack! Available here. Stick around ’til the end for a sneak peak at the upcoming Johnny Raekes edit!
We have expanded our team to include an insane crew from the west coast like never before with Andrew Castaneda, Demarcus Paul (who got hurt right before the project), Johnny Raekes, Hobie Doan, Charles Littlejohn, Gabe Brooks and Richard Hernandez. We also have two of our top pros, Augie Simoncini and Colin Varanyak—who originally hail from the east coast—currently calling California home as well. So it only made sense for us to get them altogether and do their thing. We rounded out the squad with a couple of our top east coast riders, Abdul Fufanah and Jonathan “Twinn” Jaramillo, and Clay Johnson from Arizona to add to the mayhem. The riding that went down was wild, insane, technical, dope, crazy, smooth, and above all… motivating to get you to hit the streets right after you watch it. Thank you for your support of Animal and real BMX street riding. —Ralph Sinisi, Owner-Animal Bikes