Skills with Phil Rider Feature

Before becoming a YouTube famous content creator, NOBL ambassador Phil Kmetz was racing professionally on the DH circuit. While he cut his teeth making straightforward MTB riding tutorials, he’s best known these days for his positive vibe and infectiously engaging cycling videos.

Creating the high-calibre content Phil is known for is more than a full-time job but luckily for us, he was able to take a moment out of his busy schedule for our rider Q & A.

Q & A with Phil

Where is your favorite trail? Why?
The ones where I don’t have to pedal. I grew up riding dirt jumps on BMX bikes where pedaling between jumps was frowned upon so your pumping skills had to be on point. All my favorite MTB trails have something that reminds me of riding dirt jumps.

What are you passionate about, outside of the cycling realm?
Recently I moved to Vermont full time and I’ve gotten back into snowboarding and this year I picked up snowskating. It’s a good break during the winter to help keep things fresh. The time off the bikes helps rejuvenate you to get back out on the bike come Springtime.

How did your cycling adventure start?

It’s something I picked up as a kid. I moved around a lot, so I never made strong friendships. Instead, I’d spend my afternoons riding around the yard or digging up the grass to make jumps. Wherever I moved I was always the weird kid who was obsessed. My parents noticed my interest in bikes and even though they weren’t competitive people, they got me involved with racing from an early age.

What have been the challenges and successes with your YouTube channel?

People’s attention is very limited, so you have to get your point across quickly. This makes it tricky when explaining complicated topics in simple terms. Everybody wants to learn easily how to master a bunny hop in 5 minutes or less. Imagine trying to explain something as simple as how to walk, there’s a lot more to it than just putting your right leg in front of your left.

If you could change one thing about the bike industry today, what would it be?
I wish there was more focus on the experience and less focus on performance. If you smash a derailleur hanger, there’s a good chance that the bike shops in town don’t carry the derailleur hanger for your bike. That means you will have to special order it and will be off the bike for a few weeks until it comes in. Those sorts of experiences can suck the joy out of biking.

GT Force Carbon Pro LE

Bike Check


Fork: Rockshox Zeb Ultimate 170mm

Saddle + Dropper

Saddle: Fabric (painted by Phil)
One Up 210mm

Rear Shock

Rear Shock: Rockshox Super Deluxe

Pedals + Cranks

Pedals: Chromag Daggas
Cranks: Truvativ Descendants with 32t chainring


Bars + Stem

Bars: Stock GT 40mm rise bars and 31.8 Diameter, 790 width 
Deity Copperhead 50mm length

Brakes + Shifter

Brakes: Sram Code RSC 220mm rotor front 200mm rotor rear
Shifter/Derailleur: SRAM X01 Eagle


Phil has gone with a Maxxis Assegai in EXO+ casing in the front and a Minion DHF with DH casing in the rear. He’s running CushCore inserts on both ends of the bike for added sidewall stability when railing his TR37’s through the turns.

Onyx Vesper Hubs

Silent and stealthy, Onyx’s revolutionary sprag clutch makes it the fastest rolling hub on the market. The freehub is completely silent when coasting and engages instantly the moment you drop the hammer. For his 2021 GT Force, Phil selected the lighter weight of ONYX’s two offerings, the Vesper.

Want to see more of Phil's Bikes

Phil's Bike History