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Review: Bont Vaypor Shoes

Bont Vaypor shoesThere’s an old saying that “shoes make the man” and the Bont Vaypor shoes are no exception.  The speed skating shoe turned cycling shoe company based in Australia may not have the history that some other companies do, but they’ve found their way onto the feed of numerous professionals, including Bradley Wiggins, Johan Van Summern and the recently retired Thor Hushovd.  But just because the pros use them does that mean they are good for everyone else out there?

I’ve put a season and a half on these shoes, using them for everything from training to racing to gravel grinding, and my impressions are after the jump:

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By |July 21st, 2015|equipment, reviews, Road bike|0 Comments

Review: Zipp Tangente Tubular Tires

Zipp Tangente Tubular TiresTubular tires seem to be going out of style these days, but there is still a very loyal following of people who love the supple feel and unmatched ride quality of a tubular tire.  As I noted back in my Vittoria Rubino Pro III review, there’s a huge spectrum of tires, from the “lightweight and supple for racing on smooth roads, durable, high volume and puncture resistent for riding gravel grinders, or somewhere in between for everyday training tires.”  In the case of Zipp’s Tangente Tubulars, we’re talking not about a high durability training tire, but a lighter weight racing tubular.  And after a season of riding (and racing) Tangentes, here are my thoughts on these “aerodynamic wonders.”

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By |December 18th, 2014|components, reviews, Road bike, wrenching|0 Comments

SRAM Yaw Front Derailleur Review

SRAM Red Yaw Front DerailleurIt’s been well advertised that the SRAM Red Yaw front derailleur has revolutionized mechanical front shifting.  Tom Boonen won a pair of monuments on it last year.  One could arguably claim that the simple concept of an uneven parallelogram that pivots about the seat tube, negating the need for a trim function and packaged into a lightweight and (importantly) stiff front dérailleur is the crown jewel of the new Red group. But does this seemingly unsung piece of metal really live up to the hype?

After the jump I’ll examine my experience with the Yaw unit over the past eight months and figure out if it lives up to the hype.

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By |November 21st, 2013|components, reviews, wrenching|3 Comments

SRAM Red Exogram Quarq Review

Quarq in boxAfter managing to put paid to my third Cinqo power meter, Quarq went above and beyond the call of warranty service and upgraded me to a Red Exogram power meter to replace the problem child Cinqo.  I detailed the warranty process in this post, so you can read about it in detail there.  Suffice to say, Quarq was wonderful throughout the process and I feel confident recommending them and their power meter units to anyone.

As for the Red Exogram model, while it may look similar, in reality it is a radical departure from the (now discontinued) Cinqo model, both in terms of the power meter spider and the SRAM crank components themselves.

After the jump we’ll take a look at the Exogram unit as a whole and as a sum of its parts.

 

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By |July 9th, 2013|components, power, reviews, wrenching|0 Comments

Giro del Cielo Race Report (Podcast #19)

PEC at Giro del CieloThe Giro del Cielo is a 2 day stage race in Sussex County, New Jersey.  Originally begun as a women’s only race, in the 9 years or so that it’s been in existence, organizers have added men’s cat 3 and 4/5 fields.  USA Cycling sanctioned, the 2 day/3 stage event is a great way to introduce people to stage racing without forcing them to commit to something as brutal as the Green Mountain Stage Race, Tour of the Catskills or the like.  It’s geographical location in northern New Jersey is also the perfect venue to draw a diverse group of racers and teams, ranging from local squads to teams and riders from New York City and Philadelphia.

I’ll go through my experience stage by stage, discussing some of the things that worked, some of the things that didn’t, and how to improve for next year.  I’ll cover:

  • Time Trial warmup – Getting your body primed for a hard, constant effort
  • TT recap
  • Post TT recovery – How to make sure the legs are fresh for a second race that day
  • Crit race warmup – Getting your leg speed online
  • ​Crit race recap
  • Day 1 recovery – The key to riding strong on day 2
  • Circuit race warmup – Getting the legs moving after a couple hard efforts the day before
  • Circuit race recap
  • Overall impression of the race and of my performance
By |June 27th, 2013|Coaching, podcast, racing, reviews|0 Comments