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Actually I hate the term 'alien' but until a better euphemism comes along to describe those riders that consistently perform at a higher level we're stuck with it..
Info on relative bike spec has never been so readily available and accessible as it is now thanks to the Internet and the large amounts of info and quotes posted by riders, technical crew, journalists etc. When you have people like Ramon Forcada, Steve Blackburn (Tech 3 mechanic), Wilco Zeelenberg, Dennis Noyes, Neil Spalding et al happy to answer questions via social media, it's not that hard to find answers to certain questions relating to bike spec. Speaking only for myself, if I make a comment on that particular subject you can at least be sure that any claims are researched rather than invented.