Goodyear's Eagle F1 tyre is a brand new range-topping high-end race and performance clincher design that offers a silky-smooth ride feel with low rolling resistance. It's another top contender to add to your shortlist.
Goodyear is a huge automotive tyre company that you've probably heard of, especially if you watch any motor racing, but it used to make bicycle tyres a very long time ago. The company returned to the cycling market in 2015 with road, gravel and mountain bike tyres that were very well received. This new Eagle F1 is a bit more ambitious.
To make the tyres, Goodyear partnered with Rubber Kinetics, a Californian start-up, intending to 'establish Goodyear as a leading brand within the global premium bicycle tire segment'.
The Eagle F1 and the even lighter Eagle F1 Supersport have been designed to be as light as possible without sacrificing puncture resistance and durability, and deliver the holy grail of low rolling resistance. The tyre has been wholly developed in-house using its rubber compounds made specifically for each tyre.
The company doesn't give too much away about its proprietary compound, which is enhanced with graphene and 'next-generation amorphous (non-crystalline) spherical Silica' to create what it labels Dynamic:GSR. The result of all these fancy words is a rubber that is aimed at delivering a nice blend of low rolling resistance, improved grip in the dry and wet, and ong-term durability.
Fending off flats is down to the R:Shield puncture protection belt located under the tread (it's narrower on the Eagle F1 Supersport to save weight) and Goodyear has added 'Dual Integrated Tread Zones' to the shoulder of the otherwise slick tyre.
If you want some numbers, the new compound offers a 10.1% rolling efficiency improvement over its previous Eagle F1 All-Season tyre, +8 increase in grip in wet and dry conditions and 7.2% better wear rate.
On the weight front, these tyres certainly impress. The 28mm Eagle F1 on test here comes in at 234g which is very decent – the recently tested Michelin Power Road 28mm clincher tyres are 258g. So if weight is key, these are off to a good start.
If that's too heavy for you, a 23mm Eagle F1 Supersport weighs a claimed 180g, though it's a tyre designed for time trials and competition use only.
I fitted the tyres to some Reynolds carbon wheels and inflated to about 70psi for my body weight, and hit the road to rack up several hundred miles that took in all conditions but mainly a large amount of rain, wind and mud. For a tyre billed as an ultra-high-performance all-round road race tyre these probably aren't the best months to use such a tyre, but needs must.
Coming off the back of testing Continental's GP5000 and Michelin's Power Road tyres, the benchmark was very high for the Goodyear Eagle F1s. Immediate impressions were very favourable. Rolling speed measured on set testing loops using a power meter to try to remove some variables showed the tyres comfortably fell into the same performance bracket as those two rivals. They feel fast from the off, and whether descending or climbing there's a definite sense of speed from the tyres.
This is far from a scientific test, we await the results of the Bicycle Rolling Resistance test eagerly.
Carcass suppleness is everything when it comes to rolling resistance and ride feel, and these certainly have that ability to deform to the road surface. They have a good floaty (technical term) sensation over coarser road surfaces. The extra volume helps too, with 28mm striking a good balance between weight, aerodynamics, rolling resistance and comfort.
Grip in the dry and wet is good. Some tyres are fabulous on dry roads but skittish after a downpour, but that's not the case here. They are predictable regardless of the road surface, nor are they fazed by a bit of mud on the road (a good thing at this time of year on my local roads).
Push on a bit more and find some twisty roads and the tyres show good ability in the corners. Lean the bike right over as far as you dare and there's a reassuring sense of grip from the shoulder of the tyre, which encourages you to carry more speed through the corners. Straight-line braking traction is good too, and on some steeper climbs they showed adequate capability to find grip and not spin out.
The only downside is the one puncture I've had during testing. Not a scientific test at all, but a teeny tiny bit of flint managed to penetrate the puncture defences and pop the inner tube. Annoyingly, it got so lodged in that it was a challenge to remove it. I'd never thought to carry a pair of tweezers in my saddle pack until then. It's the sort of puncture that tubeless tyres would have coped with, so good news that Goodyear is working on a tubeless version.
You can spend a fortune on a tyre, but Goodyear has ensured its tyres are good value from the off with no discounting needed to bring them down to a sensible level (as was the case with the GP5000 launch). Look around and £40-45 seems to be the going price – many after discounting – for a high-end tyre designed for racing, so these new Eagle F1 tyres hit the right note.
The Michelin Power Road is a worthy rival, with very similar performance and maybe a hint more durability, and are priced at £42.99. Other options are more expensive at rrp, though: Continental's GP5000 is £59.95, Vittoria's Corsa Speed £64.99, Specialized's Turbo Cotton £61 and Schwalbe's One £52.99.
Overall, the Eagle F1s offer really good all-round performance with speed and grip, at an excellent price.
Light and fast with good grip in wet and dry conditions, though perhaps not the toughest tyre
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road.cc test report
Make and model: Goodyear Eagle F1 road tyre
Size tested: 28mm
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?
Goodyear says: "A range of road race bicycle tires for superior on road grip and handling. Designed for performance at the highest level. The Goodyear name first appeared on a bicycle tire in 1898. Since then, Goodyear and the legendary winged foot logo have been prominent in the winners circle across an entire spectrum of motorsports including an unrivaled 361 F1 wins"
Tell us some more about the technical aspects of the product?
Dynamic:GSR – Improved Grip, Reduced Rolling Resistance and Longer Wear
R:Shield – Improved puncture protection under the tread while maintaining overall performance
Dual Integrated Tread Zones – Keeping the driving and braking forces aligned properly as cornering forces come into play.
Class leading lightweight design – Lower rotating weight allowing for quicker acceleration, low rolling resistance and supple ride.
Tell us how the product performed overall when used for its designed purpose
Fast, light and grippy.
Tell us what you particularly liked about the product
They're fast, light and grippy.
Tell us what you particularly disliked about the product
How does the price compare to that of similar products in the market, including ones recently tested on road.cc?
They are competitively priced. Where key rivals from Continental, Vittoria, Specialized are in the £60 ballpark, the Goodyear RRP is where those rivals are after a round of discounting.
Did you enjoy using the product? Yes
Would you consider buying the product? Yes
Would you recommend the product to a friend? Yes
Use this box to explain your overall score
They offer really good all-round performance with speed and grip and are very reasonably priced, but could perhaps be just a bit tougher.
About the tester
I usually ride: My best bike is:
I've been riding for: 10-20 years I ride: Every day I would class myself as: Expert
I regularly do the following types of riding: road racing, time trialling, cyclo cross, commuting, touring, mtb,
David has worked on the road.cc tech team since July 2012. Previously he was editor of Bikemagic.com and before that staff writer at RCUK. He's a seasoned cyclist of all disciplines, from road to mountain biking, touring to cyclo-cross, he only wishes he had time to ride them all. He's mildly competitive, though he'll never admit it, and is a frequent road racer but is too lazy to do really well. He currently resides in the Cotswolds.