review

Tune Skyracer saddle

9
£265.00

VERDICT:

9
10
One of the lightest available, and not bad on price – relatively speaking...
Weight: 
66g
Contact: 

Tune's Skyracer saddle is a featherweight carbon saddle that provides surprising comfort. The cutout works well to relieve pressure and I've been happy to use it for longer hill climb training sessions. The price does make it an expensive way to save weight, though.

  • Pros: Superlight; pretty comfortable for regular riding
  • Cons: Delicate carbon edges; not cheap

Tune's Skyracer uses a bare carbon construction that will please the weight weenies. At 66g it beats many of the hill climb favourites and the max rider weight of 100kg is impressive. It's also more comfortable than it looks – I was still able to enjoy longer hill climb training sessions in relative comfort, though I wouldn't want to do my normal road riding on it.

Tune Skyracer saddle - top.jpg

If you've got this far and you're still wondering why someone would want such a superlight saddle then I'd suggest this review isn't for you. Hill climbing and weight weenieism is a weird world, but it's one that I love.

The Skyracer is one of the lightest production saddles on the market. It beats the Bontrager XXX (68g, £299.99), Berk Lupina 12K (70g, £260), AX Lightness Leaf Plus 3K (93g, £269). Only the Selle Italia SLR C59 (61g, £399.99) is lighter. It's still stunningly light.

For many, that's where the review ends. Their saddle is there purely for race efforts, and if £265 is worth the weight saving, then crack on.

Personally, I don't have that kind of cash to throw at a race day only saddle, and I like to train on my bike as much as possible so comfort and durability also come into consideration. On the comfort front, although I wasn't sitting on a cloud, the Skyracer's shape was fine and the central cutout ensured there was no numbness.

Over rougher ground, I could feel the lack of padding, and the narrow 126mm width made me aware that I was perched on a bare carbon sliver of a saddle. That said, I was able to head out for interval training in the local hills for around two hours without too much discomfort.

Tune Skyracer saddle - nose.jpg

Durability is a tough one to judge because, in terms of pure mileage, this saddle hasn't seen a lot of use. The Skyracer is made using recycled carbon rated to support a 100kg rider. Tune says that there will be no material fatigue, even after '200,000 test cycles'. While I can't prove/disprove that claim, the saddle does meet the safety requirements of ISO 4210-9.

It's made from a single piece of carbon fibre – there's no adhesive bonding to be found, reducing potential weak points. Tune uses a thermoplastic material to bond single long-fibre carbon 'snippets'. While this is great for the strength, it also creates a beautiful finish with an almost marble-like upper layer.

The one potential weak point of the saddle is the rim: you won't want to be leaning your bike up by the saddle. It's possible to scuff the carbon, and if you do that in the wrong place it could eat away at your shorts and then your skin. (If it does get damaged, Tune can recycle the Skyracer – up to five times – using electrical fragmentation and other processes to get the carbon fibre pieces back to a usable product.)

Tune Skyracer saddle - underside.jpg

The 7mm full carbon round rails are 43mm wide and seem pretty strong. While I was careful with the torque wrench to keep things under 10Nm, I had no slipping or creaks in use.

I've covered the saddle's main hill climb rivals above, and for weight vs cost the Skyracer looks really quite good. I do have one left-field suggestion for riders wanting a hill climb and road racing saddle in one, though: a Repente Aleena 4.0. It's more expensive at £295, but the detachable cover means you could have a normal saddle for general riding that can be made lighter on race day, simply by detaching the cover.

> Buyer's Guide: 14 of the best high performance saddles

The Skyracer, though, is probably going to be your race day only hill climb saddle, and if you want one of the lightest out there, you won't be disappointed.

Verdict

One of the lightest available, and not bad on price – relatively speaking...

If you're thinking of buying this product using a cashback deal why not use the road.cc Top Cashback page and get some top cashback while helping to support your favourite independent cycling website

road.cc test report

Make and model: Tune Skyracer saddle

Size tested: 126mm wide

Tell us what the product is for and who it's aimed at. What do the manufacturers say about it? How does that compare to your own feelings about it?

Tune says:

"Skyracer redefines limits: Limits of Safety. Limits of stability. Limits of compatibility. Limits of seed. Limits of durability. Limits of research."

Tell us some more about the technical aspects of the product?

From Tune:

Safety: No material fatigue. Even after 200,000 test cycles. 3-4x higher impact resistance. Meets the safety requirements of ISO 4210-9 even at its svelte 69 grams (for the record, that's about 23 cubes of sugar). Made from a 5 times as expensive, aviation proven and carbon reinforced material.

Stability: No adhesive bonding. No weaknesses. 10x stronger than comparable models using. Formed in a single piece. Manufactured at 400 degrees and 300 bars using an unprecedented manufacturing process. This makes the saddle .

Compatibility: It can be used on all seatposts. The 'Forged Carbon' Skyracer does not require oversize clamping.

Speed: No more pressure on the perineal region. No slipping. You can focus on your ride. The saddle offers two seating positions, each with two cambers prevents slipping.

Durability: Fully recycled up to 5x. Protects the environment and think to tomorrow

Research: 5 years of development. Investment of 2.5 million.

The icing on the cake: To personalise the saddle. The colour of the nose-piece can be selected from all the available tune colours.

Rate the product for quality of construction:
 
10/10
Rate the product for performance:
 
10/10
Rate the product for durability:
 
5/10
Rate the product for weight (if applicable)
 
10/10
Rate the product for comfort (if applicable)
 
5/10
Rate the product for value:
 
6/10

Tell us how the product performed overall when used for its designed purpose

Surprisingly well. I was happy to find that it's quite comfy.

Tell us what you particularly liked about the product

The weight. It is pure feathery lightness.

Tell us what you particularly disliked about the product

I'd be so worried about scuffing the edges.

How does the price compare to that of similar products in the market, including ones recently tested on road.cc?

Pretty favourably. It is cheaper than its closest rival, the Bontrager XXX saddle, and lighter too.

Did you enjoy using the product? Yes

Would you consider buying the product? Yes, if I was building the ultimate hill climb bike.

Would you recommend the product to a friend? Yes

Use this box to explain your overall score

The delicate edges and slightly firm ride only marginally detract from what is a stupidly light saddle at a not obscene price. This is a pure performance saddle and it does this brilliantly.

Overall rating: 9/10

About the tester

Age: 24  Height: 177cm  Weight: 62kg

I usually ride: Cannondale Supersix Di2  My best bike is:

I've been riding for: 5-10 years  I ride: Most days  I would class myself as: Expert

I regularly do the following types of riding: road racing, time trialling, cyclo-cross, commuting, club rides, general fitness riding, I specialise in the Cafe Ride!

Son of a Marathon runner, Nephew of a National 24hr Champion, the racing genetics have completely passed him by. After joining the road.cc staff in 2016 as a reviewer, Liam quickly started writing feature articles and news pieces. After a little time living in Canada, where he spent most of his time eating poutine, Liam returned with the launch of DealClincher, taking over the Editor role at the start of 2018. At the weekend, Liam can be found racing on the road both in the UK and abroad, though he prefers the muddy fields of cyclocross. To date, his biggest race win is to the front of the cafe queue.

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