Fi'zi:k Ares Saddle $199.95
Get in position.
The Fi'zi:k Ares Saddle uses its model name to represent what the saddle is all about. Basically, the differences between the Ares and the Antares amount to a shortened front end -- Antares minus 34mm in length equals the Ares. Take off the 'Ant,' leave the 'Ares,' and you've got the new saddle. While it seems new, it's been around for some time. In fact, Zabriskie rode an early prototype to victory at the 2008 US National Time Trial championships. Since then, it's developed a stellar time trial pedigree, particularly under the now-defunct, Team Columbia and the TT powerhouse, Garmin-Sharp-Barracuda.
You might be wondering -- why the shortened nose? Simple. Two words and three letters: time trial, UCI. To achieve the forward position, while placing your weight at the rear of the saddle, the nose needs to shortened in order to be compliant with regulations. The UCI dictates that the saddle's nose can be no less than 5cm behind the bottom bracket. So, you can achieve this at home with a hacksaw, or you can get a time trial-specific saddle.
The advantage of the Ares is not only the aesthetic plus of not having duct tape on your saddle, but also in having the saddle dimensions tweaked ever-so-slightly for greater comfort on the aero bars. The nose of the Ares is 42mm wide. Fi'zi:k also added 3mm of padding over the entirety of the saddle, with 12mm at the nose. The extra padding makes holding your position a comfortable affair by dispersing your body weight over a greater area. Even if you like riding on the nose, you have an 89mm platform until the widening flare occurs. And once this happens, the flare measures to 142mm -- the same width as the rear of the Antares.
The saddle's shell is made from a carbon-reinforced nylon in order to reduce longitudinal deformation, so you won't notice any hammock effect while riding. The K:ium (pronounced 'Koom' like zoom) rails are an evolutionary step forward from titanium rails. They're 8% lighter, have a greater strength-to-weight ratio. Additionally, K:ium dampens road vibrations more effectively with its Silicium treatment. This also provides the shiny glean of the rails, which is due to its slight chrome content. Even better, the chrome increases corrosion resistance, which obviously increases the Ares' lifespan.