What a wet and windy weekend! Hopefully the sunshine will make a return this week, but of course we're still out testing all the bikes and all the gear whatever the weather. Here's the best of the test pile before we roll into August...
Veloflex are still something of an enigma on these shores, with few retailers stocking them in the UK... but after the Italians recently launched a range of tubeless ready tyres, we had to check 'em out. Designed with "the same artisanal process" use for their much-lauded tubular tyres, the Corsa Race TLR is handmade in the Veloflex laboratory from an exclusive compound made out of natural rubber and silica. It has a 'Resilient Kinetic Belt' for puncture protection, sidewall protection and Veloflex's Air-Lock membrane to minimise air pressure loss. They also say the Zylon non-extendable beads should allow the tyre to seat properly in your rim without needing an air chamber-style pump.
Have they become Liam Cahill's tyres of choice? His review is coming soon.
Rapha promise high-contrast lens tech in these super lightweight shades, that are just 28g on the scales. The arms are made of injection-moulded Grilamid, plus Megol arm grippers to provide "a secure yet comfortable grip in all conditions" claim Rapha. The nose piece comes in two sizes to suit most face shapes, and Rapha say the curvature of the frame creates a wrapped fit for maximised field of vision. Hydrophobic tech in the lens should repel moisture, and there's also a 'military-grade' anti-fog treatment to stop them steaming up.
£3,241.00 (frameset only)
The MIN.D (which stands for Minimal Design) is the first road bike from Open, and designer Gerard Vroomen says the aim was to make “a carbon frame with top performance features but the sensibilities of a classic frame". It's certainly different to your average, with space for 32mm tyres and an integrated seatpost that Open claims will increase comfort through the frame. Despite this its looks are rather traditional, with no dropped seatstays to be seen, rounded tube shapes and a classic, sportive-style relaxed geometry. While the integrated seat post that is just 25mm in diameter might seem like a bike fit nightmare, the “minimalist seat tube top clamp” offers 15mm of height adjustment. Did this unusual frame open up a world of more comfortable riding for our tester as promised? The test report is due shortly...
The Strade are the result of a lengthy R+D project from British wheel brand Parcours, their first set of wheels to be fully designed in-house. From their research, Parcours concluded that the front and rear wheels should be different depths and profiles, and the finished set includes a 49mm front wheel with a U-shaped rim at the front, and a depth of 54mm at the rear with a V-shaped rim. This is because data collected in the wind tunnel by placing sensors on the wheels found that airflow at the rear was affected by the front of the bike and rider interaction, and in tests the front wheel was significantly more affected by crosswinds because it moves on its axis when the rider steers. In terms of tyre width the Strade is bang on trend, optimised for 28mm tubeless tyres, and the price tag is kept under the magic £1k mark: strong, stable and speedy? The review is due soon.
The Rexston "is ready for your next rugged adventure" according to FLR, designed to be robust on and off the bike. A synthetic upper with mesh windows allows for plenty of breathability and ventilation, and you get extra protection from a reinforced toe box. There's nothing fancy with the closure system, with reliable laces and a single Velcro strap to offer a secure and adjustable fit. The AT200 outsole was created especially for the Rexston shoe, and FLR say it provides "exceptional performance pedalling on the bike and comfort off the saddle". Perfect for your next outdoor adventure on two wheels? Emma Silversides' test report is coming in early August...
Arriving at road.cc in 2017 via 220 Triathlon Magazine, Jack dipped his toe in most jobs on the site and over at eBikeTips before being named the new editor of road.cc in 2020, much to his surprise. His cycling life began during his students days, when he cobbled together a few hundred quid off the back of a hard winter selling hats (long story) and bought his first road bike - a Trek 1.1 that was quickly relegated to winter steed, before it was sadly pinched a few years later. Creatively replacing it with a Trek 1.2, Jack mostly rides this bike around local cycle paths nowadays, but when he wants to get the racer out and be competitive his preferred events are time trials, sportives, triathlons and pogo sticking - the latter being another long story.