06/12/2015 09:45 EDT | Updated 06/12/2016 05:59 EDT

Catharine Pendrel's ride: Not your everyday bike

Maybe it's not so surprising that world champion Catharine Pendrel's pistol-hot 2014 season was achieved riding a bike built by a company that used to make guns.

Orbea — Pendrel's Spanish bike sponsor — started in the handgun and rifle business 175 years ago. The company boomed in wartime but in the late 1930's made a strategic move into bicycles, having all the tube-producing machinery and manufacturing expertise on-hand. 

"It's cool that they now do bicycles and promote recreation and healthy living, rather than helping out during war," says the 34 year old, who claimed her 2nd career world title and Commonwealth Games gold last season.

Speaking from her Kamloops home, Pendrel says the difference between her bike and what most people ride is comparable to driving a Chevy Nova versus an F-1 Ferrari. 

"It's just a phenomenal piece of equipment."

Tool of the Trade

Here's what makes Pendrel's bike special:


Colours of the Rainbow: Custom rainbow striped paint job and decals are the mark of the reigning world champion. Pendrel also races wearing the rainbow stripes.


Electrontic Evolution: Pendrel's Orbea Oiz has both electronic shifting and suspension. Electronic suspension is the newest innovation in mountain biking. Sensors on the bike read the terrain (uphill, downhill, or flat) and automatically adjust.

- #morekidsonbike: Pendrel is a passionate advocate for getting kids out cycling, and she has the custom stem cap to prove it.

- Two for the Show: Depending on the course Pendrel has two race bikes to choose; one with dual suspension (front and back) and a "hardtail" with front suspension only. She won the 2014 World Championships riding her dual suspension.

- Price Tag: Pendrel says her bikes would retail for $11,000 each.