“I like my bling. Make me a bike that reflects my tastes.”
Those were the only instructions Dublin based bike builder Aiden Duff of FiftyOne Bikes received from UFC Champion Conor McGregor when tasked with building the Irish star a custom bicycle for his training. Duff received the call through a connection in McGregor’s inner circle, landing him and his company an opportunity to build a bike seen by the masses.
So why does McGregor chose cycling to prepare for the arduous nature of UFC?
“We do a specific heart rate at a specific wattage. For endurance it’s good because you’re not pounding the roads,” McGregor said of cycling. “If I was to run; you’re pounding the roads and it’s not good for the body. So I do the sprints on the treadmill and on the rowing machine. And then I do my endurance on the bike.”
And why flat pedals?
While they may seem a strange choice for such a high performance machine, McGregor explains flat pedals were a necessity ordered by his doctor to take care of an old ACL injury.
“He gets a lot of stick for his use of flat pedals,” says Duff, “but there is a logical basis behind it. He damaged his ACL a number of years ago and had a remarkable comeback. It’s not because he doesn’t know about clipless pedals, but he doesn’t do anything that may hamper or inflame that old injury."
The bike itself is custom built to McGregor’s bespoke measurements and presented with designs to match his outrageous, unforgiving manner. The bike has both "McGregor" and "Notorious" inscribed into the frame, with touches of real 24-carat gold leaf, producing a bike fit for a king!
The finishing touch to McGregor’s premium training tool? A pair of Crankbrothers Stamp 11 pedals with "Notorious" laser etched upon the pedal body.