Competitive Cyclist Reviews Electric DuraAce “Di2”

I’m skeptical too: Mainly because of the price. Mechanical Dura Ace works great at a fraction of the price. You might even say that Mechanical Ultegra works just fine for 99.999% of serious race riders.

So who else besides Tri-geeks (who enjoy urinating on themselves mid race, take that straw man!) would actually buy this?

The bicycle for the man who has $34,000 burning a hole in his pocket

It’s carbon fiber!

Wait…so is every other premium road bike on the market…

It’s designed by F1 engineers!

I think the guys over at Trek, Specialized, Giant, and Felt know what they are doing. Their time trial bikes actually have wind tunnel time.


Yeah, that’s about all I can really see being the benefit of dropping 40 grand (for the Di2 version) for this bike. Granted, I’ve picked up a nearly 20,000 dollar bike, however that bike was a rocketship provided you had the legs to push it to potential (which I, in my current SuperFred status, definitely do NOT). So why would you spend $40k on a bicycle? What would possess a sane person to do this? Nothing, really. The only reason to own that bike is the very fact that it was designed by F1 engineers. No doubt most of these bikes will end up where all the other expensive boutique bikes end up: adorning the wall or hanging above the fireplace of a man or woman who admires bicycles, yet never finds the time to ride them. At the very least, whoever buys this bike won’t have to change their wall hanging next year when Cervelo comes out with an even better, more aerodynamic, stiffer, and sexier bike.

As much as I admire the disc brakes, I’ll take a Di2 equipped R3SL instead. At least that bike would be built with a purpose other than being mounted up against the wall.

Lately, I am preparing for an exam which I will sit for on Friday. The lack of time or sometimes will to get out and ride after putting in a 10 hour or more study session really highlights how easy it can become to make a habit out of not getting in the daily spin.

That being said, I am heading out this weekend to Warda, TX and Smithville, TX to hit up some of the nicest trails in the state.

See you all next week!

src: Autoblog

Pre-Season Upgrades

As the season approaches and begins, Highflange does a few upgrades to the race machines. James is stepping into the ring with a new lightweight stem (Thor Hushovd edition) and I stepped in with a set of carbon tubulars (Reynolds DV46KT). I took them out for a spin and realized that I had totally forgotten how amazing tubulars cornered.


The tires we decided on were a set of Continental Sprinters with a kevlar sidewall.

I finally had a chance to test them out: my verdict: Aero is real. It might be really placebo-like, but I noticed a difference above 20 mph increasing exponentially. As the wheels spun faster, they seemed to accelerate more easily. At this stage, I have been off the bike for over a month traveling around the world (more on that later!) however the cornering on tubulars was also something to be reckoned with. I was able to approach corners that before caused the michelin pro race tires I was on (in clincher form) to deform with confidence. The tires may not actually corner better, but the confidence they inspire in their stability will have you turning faster as soon as you put them on. I didn’t expect this to be as drastic, however I will definitely be using tubulars in criterium races this year!

Sadly, I am not going to do any training on these wheels, so back to the case they go and back on go my training wheels. They sure do look pretty, though.