£2k carbon monocoque racer for podium-chasers

We always like to test stuff well to see if it's fit for purpose here at road.cc, so the first thing we'll often do is nip over to the maker's website to see what they say it's meant to do. And GT make some pretty grandiose claims of this carbon mid-ranger.

"If you are a Recreational rider or beginning racer looking for a carbon racing bike, look no further", is what GT say on their website about this bike. "With Force Optimized full carbon monocoque construction, plus a host of other hard-racing, gram-shaving features, you can rest assured that that the GTR Sport Carbon can – and will – make up for any lapses in your own racing ability. See how nice the podium feels"

So there you go. The GTR Sport Carbon is able to make up for your myriad inadequacies as a rider, so that's comforting. Tested against those criteria we're guessing the scores are going to come in pretty low, so instead we'll assume it is what it is: a mid-level carbon offering that's well specced and easy on the eye.

We first saw – and indeed rode – the GTR platform way back at the very birth of road.cc. It was one of the first bikes we actually slung a leg over – in its Expert incarnation – but it never made it to the site as GT chose to knock the model range back a year. Anyway it's here now, so let's have a look at what you're getting.

The frame itself is a full carbon monocoque with the now-ubiquitous asymetric headset: inch and an eighth at the top, inch and a half at the bottom. The top and down tubes are mainly triangular in profile with a teardrop shaped seat tube (scalloped round the rear wheel) and matching standard seatpost. The bottom bracket, interestingly, is press fit but GT haven't expanded the tubes much around the BB shell in the way that the likes of Trek have.

Kit wise you get a full 105 groupset and Ritchey finishing kit with a Fizik Arione saddle to perch on, and the finished bike weighs in at 8.3kg (18.2lb) so it's about on the money for, erm, the money. If you are a budding racer then the first swap will probably be the good-but-worthy 105/Mavic CXP22 wheels for something with a bit more zing. We'll be putting the GTR through its paces and we'll let you know how we get on...

Dave is a founding father of road.cc and responsible for kicking the server when it breaks. In a previous life he was a graphic designer but he's also a three-time Mountain Bike Bog Snorkelling world champion, and remains unbeaten through the bog. Dave rides all sorts of bikes but tends to prefer metal ones. He's getting old is why.