It is the time to reveal the best-performing products we've reviewed in August. This time, the road.cc Recommends badge was awarded to a whole bunch of titanium bikes (and some more non-titanium ones), some clothing, a wheelset and a book.
Read on to get a little snippet of why these things are worthy of the prestigious award we only give to the best, top-scoring products we've reviewed. If you want more info click on the links to take you to the full review. And speaking of reviews, not all of them make it to the Recommends, but if you're after new things, make sure to see all of our expert reviews here.
Landrace Tupelo frameset
Liv Avail Advanced Pro 2 2023
Van Nicholas Boreas
Spa Cycles Elan Ti Mk2 105 R7000 11-speed
Merida Reacto 7000
Van Nicholas Zephyr
Galibier Tourmalet 4 Jacket
Howies Gary Merino Wool Socks (Pack of 2)
Parcours Chrono wheelset
The Road Book 1989 Edited by Matt Rendell
...and you can read a bit more about them all below.
The Landrace Tupelo frameset is a beautiful titanium frame that offers exceptional versatility and comfort for cyclists seeking a lifetime companion. Landrace is the brainchild of two expert bike fitters, and hence the bike’s standout feature is the included custom bike fit, ensuring a perfect fit for the rider. While titanium frames come at a premium, the Tupelo offers good value compared to similar options on the market.
It delivers impressive ride quality on and off-road, striking a balance between reliability and stability, and the titanium frame absorbs road vibrations, providing a smoother experience than alloy frames.
The Liv Avail Advanced Pro 2 2023 is an excellent women-specific endurance bike, that delivers comfort for long rides and is priced reasonably. Designed for endurance cycling, it offers a stable and comfortable on-road experience. While it's not geared towards aggressive racing, it's not too sluggish if you want to go fast.
The carbon frame boasts a clean, modern appearance with internal cable routing and a distinctive Carbon/Airglow finish. The D-shaped Giant seatpost allows for an adjustable setback, and the frame also supports mudguards and wider tyres up to 35mm wide.
The Van Nicholas Boreas is a titanium road bike that combines classic aesthetics (aka external cabling and rim brakes) with modern performance. Offering a smooth and stiff ride quality, this bike got praise from Stu for being a versatile option for various types of cycling, from sprinting to long distance rides.
The components, including a Shimano 105 R7000 groupset and Mavic Aksium wheels, provide dependable performance, but along with the tyres could be upgraded for a little extra performance boost.
Another titanium bike? Yes, and not the last one in this article! The Spa Cycles Elan Ti Mk2 105 R7000 11-speed is a versatile titanium bike that excels in long-distance rides and commuting. The geometry provides a relaxed yet responsive feel, making it suitable for various riding preferences.
Despite its weight, the Elan is also surprisingly nimble once in motion. The 11-speed 105 mechanical groupset delivers reliable performance, and the handbuilt wheels are durable. While the bike lacks internal cable routing, its overall value and enjoyable ride quality make it a great titanium bike, especially at its current sale price.
The Merida Reacto 7000 is an aero bike that offers actual, real-world aero advantages and is also a surprisingly comfortable ride. At a relatively reasonable price point of £4,350, you get a SRAM Rival wireless electronic groupset, deep-section carbon wheels and overall, high quality components. The bike excels in terms of speed, partly thanks to the top-notch tyres it's rolling on.
While it’s not the lightest option in its price range at 8.85kg, the stiffness and responsive handling make the Reacto 7000 a great option for fast rides, or even a little bit of racing.
Like London buses, but much prettier! Our fourth titanium bike/frame to get the road.cc Recommends badge this month is the Van Nicholas Zephyr, a road bike that strikes a balance between speed and comfort. As you'd expect, it offers a smooth ride quality and impressive stiffness in critical areas. The bike has been built for riders who prefer a more relaxed riding position without compromising performance.
Stu said this bike accelerates well, handles smoothly and responds quickly to rider input. Despite not being as aerodynamic as a dedicated race bike, the Zephyr offers quite a lot of bang for your buck.
Jamie was brave enough to take these deep-dish Parcours Chrono wheels with him for a little training camp in breezy Lanzarote, giving the hoops a true test in crosswinds. His verdict was that the Parcours Chrono wheelset is a gamechanger for riders seeking speed and stability, even in windy conditions. Despite the deep 68mm and 75mm rims, these wheels feel great no matter what direction the wind is coming from, outperforming many competitors.
While they are slightly heavier than some other deep wheelsets, the Chrono wheels make up for it with their stiffness and good value for money.
Socks can be overlooked when it comes to cycling kit, but they shouldn’t. The Howies Gary Merino Wool Socks are an excellent choice for multi-day adventures, offering superb comfort and odour resistance.
In our testing, these socks proved to be durable, provided cushioning in the sole and had excellent breathability. When it comes to merino socks they also offer great value for money, especially for those who prefer this kind of shorter sock length. It's just a shame we couldn't find out who Gary is...
The Galibier Tourmalet 4 Jacket impressed us with its exceptional waterproofing, breathability and affordable price point. Building upon the success of its predecessor (which also earned a Recommends badge), this jacket features improved waterproofing with a rating of 20,000mm and enhanced breathability at 20,000g/m2/24h. This means that it excels in wet conditions, and the HydraStop 2.9+ membrane is not only waterproof, but also comfortable against the skin.
The Road Book 1989, edited by Matt Rendell, is a comprehensive almanack that commemorates the thrilling 1989 cycling season. This book combines historical race statistics with engaging essays and personal insights from cycling experts and riders who witnessed the events of that year - making it quite a brick at 400 pages of content.
The book maintains the format of previous editions, with monthly sections covering races from February to October, providing detailed coverage of every Grand Tour stage. It also includes captivating essays and comments from notable figures in the cycling world, brought to life by digitised photos from the 1970s.
Suvi joined F-At in 2022, first writing for off-road.cc. She's since joined the tech hub, and contributes to all of the sites covering tech news, features, reviews and women's cycling content. Lover of long-distance cycling, Suvi is easily convinced to join any rides and events that cover over 100km, and ideally, plenty of cake and coffee stops.