Tech Roundup: Control Tech levers, Essential prep for l'Etape du Tour, FSA race kit, Retro Reflectives, Halfords SPD shoes, Craft base layes and more!
Shoes for £39.99, hipster high-viz, summer baselayers
New time trial brake levers from Control Tech
If your time trial bike is on a high (carbon) fibre diet - and let's face it, whose isn't? - Control Tech would like you to consider their new hollow carbon brake levers. Designed to route the cables inside the bars, out of the airflow, they have 6061 aluminium bodies and 3K carbon lever blades.
According to Control Tech, the lever blade is ergonomically shaped to provide greater comfort and better braking feel. Not that it should matter - you're not going to win any time trials by slowing down now are you?
Claimed weight is 124g per pair, and they'll set you back £79.99 when the become available in mid-July.
For more information see Hotlines
Halfords cycling shoes
Halfords have announced two new sets of budget SPD shoes, one for commuting and one for mountain biking – available for an extremely accessible £39.99 and £49.99 respectively.
The hbh Leisure Cycling Shoes have grippy rubber soles, recessed cleat housing, lace closures and breathable mesh inserts. The slightly spendier hbh MTB Cycling Shoes are made from synthetic leather with ratchet straps.
They look like nice entry level shoes for commuting and mountain biking, with the minimum of financial commitment.
More details from Halfords
FSA summer riding gear
FSA now offer a full set of racing gear in classic white red and black – perfect for this summer's race calendar.
They haven't just done jersey and shorts; there's also shoe covers, socks, leg warmers and arm warmers, and they all look pretty slick.
Details are nice too – the jersey is a light 110g, the bib shorts have silicone grippers and are made from two different weights of lycra with UV protection and the socks are wicking.
All made by Nalini, so you know it'll be good stuff – but do remember it'll be super-skimpy Italian sizing so go up a size or two when you order.
More details at FSA
Etape recon DVD
Fearfully counting down the days 'til L'Etape du Tour 2012? Whether you're heading to the Pyrenees or the Alps, there's a Roads to Glory DVD (or download) to help you prepare.
Make yourself even more nervous by 'riding' the Col d’Aubisque, Col du Soulor, Col du Tourmalet, Col d’Aspin and Col de Peyresourde from the comfort of your living room.
Each climb is broken up into a series of 5-15 minute intervals with gentle recovery periods that provide a chance to catch your breath and enjoy the scenery. Yep, enjoy it now because you probably won't on the day.
Each film is 75 minutes and includes tips on preparation and nutrition.
They say forewarned is forearmed. Personally, I'd rather blissful ignorance.
Priced at £17.99 for DVD with 12-page collector's booklet.
More information at Cyclefilm
Baselayers? Just now when it's finally getting a little bit summery? Well, daft as it sounds, yes.
Craft's just launched a summerweight top that's designed for comfort and coolness against the skin, with the bonus of SPF 50 to save on suntan lotion.
It has Moving Wing Technology, to give you more movement in your, er, wings. This is basically a complex 3D construction in the shoulders and upper back, combined with a lightweight mesh fabric – Mesh Superlight that's highly elastic for comfort.
Mesh Superlight is quite funky in and of itself; Craft say: “The fibres are worked in a special knitting technique, which shaves off grams and offers exceptional cooling properties. The big-hole mesh outer provides fantastic ventilation. Whereas on the inside, CRAFT uses a plainer construction since only the contact area with the skin ensures an unbeatable heat and moisture dissipation.”
If it's anything like as nice as the winterweight one we reviewed a few months ago you'll be onto a winner.
Available in white, lime green and black, £32.
More details at Craft
Retro-style cycling safety accessories
Got your fixie and your dodgy trendy hairdo? Still feel like you're missing that little something? Maybe it's a Retro Reflective.
No need to run with the crowd in an Altura Nightvision – stand out with a Union Jack hi-viz vest, some argyle ankle bands or a camo belt.
Hurry to show your patriotic side in time for the Jubilee and the Olympics – the Union Jack vest is a limited run of 1000. As you can see from the video, it's incredibly eye-catching at night, which - let's face it - is the main thing.
They range in price from £9.99 to £19.99.
More info at Retro Reflectives
Team UK Youth socks
Show some support for Nigel Mansell's Team UK Youth with a branded performance sock – now on offer.
50p from each sale goes to the UK Youth charity, which helps develop the skills of young people, and you get a good deal too – they're £6.99 instead of £7.99 for a limited period.
Made by Moose, the socks have an anatomical design with left- and right-oriented flat seam and reinforcement in vulnerable areas, climawell fabric for coolness, and a 6cm cuff.
For the non-cyclist in your life, there's a matching phone cover for £2.50 too.
The team did well in Thursday night's Halfords Tour Series at Canary Wharf, with Chris Opie taking 3rd place overall and Yanto Barker winning the Boardman Bikes Sprint Competition.
More details from Moose