The Specialized Tracer Pro is a truly versatile tyre for those that roll their cyclo-cross bike over a variety of surfaces.
The tread design belongs to the KISS (Keep It Simple Stupid) school of thought, and that's no bad thing. Four rows of staggered squarish knobs are slightly beveled on the drive edge but square on the braking side and are bracketed by slightly longer blocks along the sides to provide lateral steering stiction. And it's a rubber combination that works.
Freedom describe the Ryder Deluxe as a 'do it all tire'. (Spelled that way because it's an American brand, a division of the WTB company that's focused on utility cycling.) It's touring/commuting tyre, designed for tarmac and sensible tracks. That puts it head to head with European favourites like the Continental Contact and Schwalbe Marathon.
The Maxxis Raze is a cyclo-cross tyre billed by Maxxis as the "solution to the diverse terrain a cyclo-cross race requires". Weight-wise, the folding version sits in the middle between the Mud Wrestler and the Mimo CX, both of which are billed by Maxxis as more suitable for wet terrain, while the Raze's selling point, according to Maxxis, is its versatility.
The tread design features a central ridge of closely spaced square knobs for reduced rolling resistance on harder terrain, while the square side knobs are spaced wider apart.
A fast-rolling tyre with good durability and impressive comfort the Vredestein Fortezza Tricomp 700x25c tyre is a good choice for the winter.
Vredestein's Fortezza Tricomp tyre uses a triple-compound tread construction, harder in the centre and softer at the sides. This makes them fast-rolling with little rolling resistance when upright, and when cornering they exhibit good grip. Traction in the dry or wet is equally impressive and there's barely any drop-off in performance the wetter it gets.
The Giant P-SLR1s are lightweight and grippy clinchers for fast road riding.
These tyres are built around 120tpi casings and they're unusual in that they're front and rear specific. They're both dual-compound, the front one designed to be stickier for extra grip while the rear one is designed to be fast and durable. As you'll doubtless know, your rear tyre generally wears faster than the front one so the idea seems sound to us.
These Kenda Super Domestique tubulars are fast rolling and they're durable too.
Kenda are best known for their mountain bike tyres but they do a whole road range as well. The Super Domestique sits in the middle of their three-model tubular line-up.
Fitting was easy enough... Well, as easy as fitting tubs ever is. I put them on some wheels unglued overnight to stretch them out and they were fine to fit the following day.
Onza is a Swiss brand producing tyres mainly for commuters, BMX and mountain bikes, plus a few road options, including this Lavin folding clincher. Although billed on the Onza website as a 'Fixie tyre', the packaging indicates it's a 'Road/Fixie tyre', and a test pair fitted to a (geared) training bike turned out to be ideal for spring conditions on a wide range of road surfaces.
The C S3 lite is a racing specific tyre which is part of Tufo's own hybrid 'tubular-clincher' system. As the name suggest elements of both tubulars and clinchers are combined to create something in between. Something that I like to call 'clinchulars'.
Onza is a Swiss brand producing tyres mainly for commuters, BMX and mountain bikes, plus a few road options including this Preda folding clincher. It's a lightweight tyre with impressive performance and good puncture protection, making it ideal for summer training, sportives and entry-level racing.
The Preda also comes in a wire-beaded version, but we're testing a pair of the Kevlar-beaded folding ones here. They went onto a pair of Mavic Open Pros easily, but without being sloppy, and sat nicely on the rim when inflated.
Schwalbe's Durano is 'for mile eaters': a training specific tyre. As a dual compound, folding tyre and at 235g, it is slightly more than this, a true utility tyre but how does it fare?
The first thing you probably want to know about a training tyre is what its puncture protection is like. Included is Schwalbe's premium level protection: RaceGuard, a synthesis of rubber and nylon moulded into the standard rubber. Schwalbe say this adds very little to weight and rolling resistance.