The Vittoria Barzo is a classic hardpack race tire. Small, low-profile lugs grip firm, dry trails well and the continuous contact center lug pattern make this one of the fastest true mountain tires out there. Lean-dependent sipe angles mean the hard cornering grip doesn't kick in until the tire is leaned over. This keeps rolling resistance to a minimum. Counter V-formation channels ease the cleaning of mud, dirt, and debris, so the tire sheds quickly if you find yourself in the sticky stuff. Although this is billed as a front or rear tire, we prefer to run it as a rear and use a tire with a more aggressive lug pattern up front.Tread is, however, only one part of the tire story. Almost as important is the casing underneath. Vittoria TNT casing is made from a cloth that has 120 threads per inch -- quite supple by mountain bike standards. The sidewalls are also reinforced with nylon in order to minimize both cuts and folding when riding at low-pressure. Holding the tire onto the rim is a traditional folding Aramid bead. The tires can be run front or rear, and if you need a little more dig in the rear, reverse the tread direction for more of a "scoop" effect.