Friday, January 13, 2012


So I started looking at new tri bikes about 3 weeks ago.  I thought by this time I would know what bike I wanted for sure but I am only somewhat sure of what I want.  I can compare this shopping experience to going out to dinner and looking over a large menu with a lot of options that sound really good.  Do I order something I am familiar with or do I go for something I have heard of before but I am not to sure about.  I also want to make sure I am getting the biggest bang from my buck.  That means I should being feeling very satisfied at the end of my meal and like I should maybe loosen my belt.

I first went to a bike shop I have been working with for years and looked at Specialized and Quintano Roo.  This was much different than buying my road bike 5 years ago.  When I bought my road bike the guy at the bike shop looked at my height and put me on a few bikes and asked me what felt the best and I ended up with the road bike I had wanted for more than half my life time.  Luckily for me I picked a bike that fit me very well.  Each shop I have been to has done some fitting analysis and some have been more detailed than others.  I road the Quintana Roo and thought is was okay and that is not what I want for the price or for a 118 mile bike leg of an Ironman.  I am sure the bike is perfect for some people but I didn't ride it and say to myself, "this is it"!

I have used the internet to do some looking around and I have read a lot of good stuff about Felt and Cervelo so I have sought them out at a number of bike shops but I keep running into one common statement.  That statement has been, Felt makes a great tri bike but you really need to look at the new Trek Speed Concept because it is the fastest bike out there.  I didn't listen right away because I haven't really seen Trek on the tri scene but spending some time with another bike shop owner I am about 80% sure that Trek might be the way to go.  Before I had a chance to ride the bike he put me through a much more detailed fitting process than the other guys and that is a plus in my book because the injuries I have had over the last year are partially related to bike positioning and I am hoping to have a much better season this year.

After getting fit and talking about the bikes I rode a Trek Speed Concept 7.5 and a Cervelo B14.  Both are awesome bikes for the money but the technology with Trek is really awesome.  I took the Trek out first and really liked the feel of the bike.  The Cervelo also felt really nice but the Trek seemed to have better shock absorption even though it is a stiffer bike.  So I like the feel of the Trek more but that is only one piece of the puzzle.  I also want to make sure the bike performs better than others aerodynamically.  Based on what I have read and heard Trek has the best aero design based on what I think I heard as YAW.  This refers to how the bike performs with side wind rather than just the head wind. has been a few months since I started writing this post.  I put my hunt for a new bike on the back burner and now I am on the hunt again.  Everything I wrote above is still true for the most part.  I think Trek makes a great bike but I am considering a few other options.  I am considering Blue and Kestrel.  I have a good friend who can get a great deal on both bikes.  He has ridden both bikes and has great stuff to say about them.  I rode his Blue and had an instant feeling of comfort on the bike I didn't get with the other bikes.  My only concern with the Blue is the fact that the seat post is pretty static.  That means that once you have been fit to the bike when it is built you can't change your seat height very much.  I know my seat has gone up some over the years and it may go up more or come down and I need to be able to make that change.  You could say that I want to make sure I can adjust my bike as my body changes.

The other conclusion I have come to is that the actual bike doesn't make that much of a difference.  Don't get me wrong.  It does help but the person riding the bike is a huge part of how fast the bike will go.  Things to take into consideration are how hard and fast can I push the peddles and what kind of wind drag do I create.

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