Challenge Fango Tire - Clincher $81.99
The perfect marriage.
As one of just a handful of open tubular cyclocross tires on the market, the Challenge Fango Clincher Tire provides the best attributes of both a tubular and a clincher within a single design. The Fango delivers the supple casing of a tubular, and it handles more smoothly than tires using stiff clincher-only casings.
The Fango's handmade 300 TPI Super Poly casing is lightweight and supple, providing responsive handling and a smooth ride-quality. It was built using a hand-glued, pre-stretched construction, with a tread that delivers a low rolling-resistance. And although the Fango is a very lightweight tire, Challenge sandwiched its proprietary fabric between the tread and casing in order to increase its ability to thwart punctures. Called the PPS (Puncture Protection System), this durable layer of material provides that added bit of protection to your race-day tire setup.
And while a tire's casing provides much of the ride comfort, Challenge also knows that its tread is equally important to the overall handling. Unlike most treads that have blocks of different sizes and spacing to accommodate a certain type of terrain, the Fangos have a center aisle of knobs that have been scooped out like a corn chip. The center scoop knob provides a greater number of contact points, while also effectively shedding mud. Meanwhile, the 33mm width provides you with ample grip, giving you the extra traction needed to launch that last minute attack.
Another integral design characteristic that you'll notice about the Fango's tread is in the shape of the side knobs. These knobs have a special curve to them, allowing the shoulders to stay gripp'y while cutting through the muck. Confident cornering, especially in soft muddy conditions, could spell the difference between finishing and winning.
For durability, the Grifo is constructed from a highly puncture-resistant and lightweight Super Poly casing. The bead of the tire uses an open tubular design. We know that it sounds like an oxymoron -- a clincher tubular. However, the benefits of Challenge open tubulars are astounding. They use the same hand-made construction techniques and materials as Challenge's tubulars. The only difference is that instead of being sewn, beads are actually formed by folding the casing around Aramid fibers. What's Aramid? Aramid is used for the tire beads for the same reason that it's used for bullet-proof vests -- its lightweight, compact strength. This fiber prevents rolling-off in corners, and adds to the cumulative strength of the tire.
The Challenge Fango Clincher Tire is available in a 700c x 33mm size and in the color Black/tan. Each tire is sold individually and tips the scales at around 340 grams.