Press Release – Trek has unveiled Checkpoint—an entirely new platform of gravel bikes ready to shake up the ever-growing segment with a full line of models designed exclusively for the dedicated, adventure-minded gravel rider.
Checkpoint is more than a modified version of Trek’s Crockett or Boone cyclocross bikes. Nor is it a new iteration of the Domane Gravel bikes introduced last year. Trek went back to the drawing board with this bike, developing a new geometry and pairing it with quality spec that will that hold up for long, rugged miles on pavement, dirt, and even the most treacherous gravel roads. It comes ready to roll with a wealth of adventure-ready features like adjustable Stranglehold dropouts, massive tire clearance, and extra mounts that make it super versatile and easy to customize.
Fast and fun
Checkpoint is available in seven different carbon and aluminum models to match the needs of every rider: SL 6, SL 5, SL 5 Women’s, ALR 5, ALR 5 Women’s, ALR 4, and ALR 4 Women’s. SL and ALR framesets are also available. SL models are built from Trek’s premium 500 Series OCLV Carbon, and ALR models feature Trek’s lightweight 300 Series Alpha Aluminum, contributing to the bike’s uber-quick ride feel.
The wide-ranging Checkpoint lineup includes enough spec options to ensure there is a build that’s right for every rider. The flagship Checkpoint SL 6 boasts a full Shimano Ultegra 2 x 11 drivetrain, Bontrager’s Paradigm Comp Disc wheels paired with Shimano RT800 Ice-Tech FREEZA rotors, and finned brake pads for lightweight durability and extra stopping power. On the other end of the spectrum, entry-level riders will be pleased to see that the ALR 4 models feature Shimano’s Tiagra 10-speed drivetrain and a wide-range 11-34 cassette. All models come equipped with 700 x 35c Schwalbe gravel tires, tubeless-ready Bontrager wheels, and flat-mount disc brakes.
One of Checkpoint’s most exciting developments is its unique, gravel-specific geometry. The new dimensions are comfortable over the long haul and on rough roads, but remain aggressive enough to provide the speed and responsive ride-feel most gravel riders are looking for.
Compared to Trek’s Boone cyclocross bike, Checkpoint features a nearly identical reach, slightly taller stack, and lower bottom bracket height. Chainstay length and wheelbase are the same. The lower bottom bracket provides the additional stability riders look for on long grinds, while maintaining a tight wheelbase, long reach, and relatively low stack height keeps Checkpoint fast and maneuverable.
Capable, trustworthy tech
Carbon (SL) models gain additional compliance and associated comfort with the same Rear IsoSpeed decoupler popularized on Domane and Boone. IsoSpeed minimizes pesky, fatiguing vibrations from even the most uneven riding surfaces, allowing riders to continue on with comfort and efficiency for much longer. SL models also include a carbon seatmast cap, Trek’s Carbon Armor to protect the frame from debris, and can easily be converted to a 1x or electronic drivetrain.
All models feature 12mm front and rear thru axles and Control Freak internal cable routing for easy cleanly organized cables that are protected from the mud and dirt that the Checkpoint rider will inevitably encounter.
Checkpoint features the Stranglehold dropouts seen on Trek’s Crockett and Stache, allowing the rider to adjust the bike’s geometry and gearing based on the requirements of the day’s ride. For example, the longest setting increases the bike’s stability for longer rides or bikepacking, while deciding to shorten the wheelbase provides snappier, more responsive handling for gravel racing. The dropouts also allow for quick, easy conversion to singlespeed.
The stock 35mm Schwalbe tires hit the sweet-spot for a lot of riders, but running other widths quickly changes Checkpoint’s identity. The rider hitting crushed limestone trails to link pavement will love firm and fast-rolling 28mm slicks, while the dedicated dirt road explorer can run 45mm knobbies to tackle the ruttiest, rockiest routes. With such a wide range of tire clearance, Checkpoint leaves the choice up to the rider.
Checkpoint is covered in mounts for even more functional versatility. Mounts on the seat tube and down tube allow riders to fit 3 bottles in the main triangle (sizes 56cm and larger), or position two bottles low while leaving room for a frame bag. There’s also space for an additional bottle underneath the down tube.
Lowrider fork mounts will take a rack such as Trek’s 720 fork rack, as just one example. Rear rack mounts provide the option to haul even more cargo, and hidden fender mounts keep the ride clean in even the worst weather. SL models include a top tube mount to quickly attach an easy-to-reach bag for ride essentials.