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    A week in Vegas is an endurance event of sorts -- ours began with pounding the desert singletrack in Bootleg Canyon and ended with all night drinking sessions. We sleepwalked through the halls of the Venetian Hotel/Casino in the wee hours of the morning, only to rejoin consciousness holding the newspaper outside the door to our room in just a pair of plaid boxer shorts. Locked out. Hmmm. Despite the monumental excess of the Las Vegas strip, and hordes of useless products being pushed by overweight toupee wearing reps, we always have a good time. Mostly due to the many [...]

    2008 Interbike Confidential

    - Las Vegas is a city where nuance in any form is hunted down and eliminated execution-style. Perma-excess is the brand. Here at the Venetian Resort — home of the Interbike trade show — the Venice theme delivers not art, but four-story McFrescoes. Not elegance, but a numbing ocean of Sherwin Williams ‘Gusto Gold’ thinly painted near the floor and the ceilings; on the trim and the moldings. The bike industry has made threats in the past to re-locate & revamp our annual tradeshow so the profit drives advocacy & access instead of lining casino mogul pockets. But inertia and [...]

    Campagnolo has once again outdone themselves with their new 11 Speed Gruppos. We explain, in detail, the differences between Chorus 11, Record 11, and Super Record 11 in our review of the latest from the masters in Italy.

    Shimano Dura-Ace Wheels

    Shimano makes, perhaps, the most underrated race wheels on the planet. Whether you’re riding the 50mm tubular or the 1380g carbon clincher, the ride quality is perfectly balanced.

    Shimano Dura-Ace Grease

    Grease is just grease, right? Some sort of petroleum-based or petroleum-like substance that is somewhere between a liquid and a solid…That is, it’s just grease until it runs out of your races because it’s too thin, or causes your pawls to fail because it’s too thick. Shimano Dura-Ace Grease is the day-glo green stuff that comes gooped in and on Shimano parts. It seems to go anywhere there are bearings or threads. Until now, you had to go with another brand grease when re-packing your Shimano hubs, pulleys, and headset. But here it is. Special Grease Dura-Ace in a 50g [...]

    - Behind every asshole, I suppose, is an act of perceived injustice. And that’s likely the case here. I’ve spent an inordinate amount of time in the last few months using the ‘What’s New’ section of the Competitive Cyclist site to bash the efforts of Team Slipstream/Garmin and, in particular, Jonathan Vaughters. My criticisms -- at least at the outset -- maybe had some vestiges of substance (e.g. Why has the cycling public extended authentic forgiveness to ex-doper David Millar, but continues to hold other dopers in contempt?) But over time, as I tired of regurgitating legitimate criticisms, I strayed [...]

    - We’ve brought this up once and again -- if there were any justice in the world, Team Columbia’s Michael Barry would’ve already won the Tour of Flanders and a passel of Tour de France stages. Alas, life is not just, and pro bike racing is exceptionally not so. But it was a fine week for Michael. He scored his first win in three years and we felt more pleasure in this than any other victory we can remember. And, in a coincidental bonus, this week Barry penned what’s probably the most human thing written about Lance Armstrong’s comeback. Michael [...]

    Eurobike Confidential 2008

    Eurobike is to Europe what Interbike is to North America: Not just a huge trade show, but an illustration of the bike industry’s disjointed ratio between the haves and have-nots. For every one member of royalty (think Ernesto Colnago or Mike Sinyard) you have 1,000 souls toiling in bike shops only because they’re of dubious employability in the food service industry and all the world’s record stores have shut down. Their dress is ragged, their tattoos roughshod, their New Era ballcaps on in reverse and their eyebrow piercings puffy -- collectively evocative of maybe a San Diego skate park or [...]

    We’ve known for some time that a major change was in store for Turner Suspension Bikes in 2009, but we weren’t sure exactly what it would be. While a change to the dw-link has been heavily rumored in forums and the industry alike, it was exactly that: rumors, no confirmation, no denials. But, our curiosity was piqued. When we heard the new bikes would be introduced at Eurobike, we called Delta and booked a ticket. Naturally, Turner was our first stop in Friedrichshafen, and Dave Turner, the company’s namesake, braintrust and fearless leader, was kind enough to spend a few [...]

    Shimano Dura-Ace 7900

    Shimano once again sets the industry standard for componentry with their revolutionary new Dura-Ace 7900 Group. Every piece of the gruppo has been redesigned to harmoniously provide intuitive and precise shifting performance.

    The CPSC and Cervélo are conducting a recall of the True Temper Wolf SL carbon fiber fork. This fork was standard equipment on several Cervélo models, including the SLC SL, R3 SL, Soloist Carbon, and R3. In some isolated instances, they may have been part of other Cervélo models including the P3 Carbon and Soloist Team. In addition, for a period the Wolf SL fork was available as an aftermarket fork. This recall is only for the Wolf SL fork. The recall is not for the True Temper Wolf TT or True Temper Wolf CL forks. Full details are located [...]

    The CPSC and Cervélo are conducting a recall of the True Temper Wolf SL carbon fiber fork. This fork was standard equipment on several Cervélo models, including the SLC SL, R3 SL, Soloist Carbon, and R3. In some isolated instances, they may have been part of other Cervélo models including the P3 Carbon and Soloist Team. In addition, for a period the Wolf SL fork was available as an aftermarket fork. This recall is only for the Wolf SL fork. The recall is not for the True Temper Wolf TT or True Temper Wolf CL forks. Full details are located [...]

    Ridley Dean

    Aero, stiff, and most importantly: Light. The Ridley Dean is all of these things in one package. Its use of airfoil-shaped tubes and patented R-Flow technology are sure to help you slide through the wind and hit the line first.

    Ridley Noah

    The second-generation of the Ridley Noah is being hailed as the fastest bike on the planet. Its use of airfoil-shaped tubes and patented R-Flow technology are sure to help you slide through the wind and hit the line first.

    Olympic Fever Continues

    - We’re still digging on the Olympics here. We’re entranced by niche sports. We’ll never look at a trampoline again the same way. And we’d trade a couple of US track & field medals for, like, a bronze by the US on the velodrome. I assume x% of my $65 USAC annual racing license goes towards the track cycling program, so I’m a stakeholder, by God! Hey USAC, WTF? To paraphrase Simon & Garfunkel -- Where have you gone, Marty Nothstein? Here’s a bet: Give me the Kissena Velodrome, some charity cash, 2 hrs per week of donated coaching time [...]

    - It’s a big day here at Competitive Cyclist. We’ve made the leap (can we say that?) to Campy 11-speed sales and Dura Ace 7900 sales on our complete bikes and in our gruppo calculator. We’re pretty much sold out of Chorus 10 and Centaur, so they’re gone from our site except for a la carte sales (’til we’re sold out of our on-hand inventory). We’ve gotten some interesting feedback already, specifically about the pricing of Super Record 11 and Record 11. We need to be really clear about one point: We don’t make these prices up. We swear. Rather [...]

    Look Keo Pedal Recall

    Below is the official recall notification regarding Look Keo Pedals. If you have questions, please feel free to email keo_recall@competitivecyclist.com or call us at 888-276-7130. Or, you’re welcome to ship your warrantable pedals to: Competitive Cyclist Attn: Look Keo Recall 2222 Cantrell Road Little Rock, AR 72202 We’re striving to turn around warranty axle retrofits within 2 business days. PRODUCT RECALL LOOK KēO Bicycle Pedals Look KēO Classic, Sprint, Carbon and HM with production date codes December 2005 or earlier (Carbon Ti, HM Ti and other Look pedals are not affected). The axle can crack and break, posing a fall [...]

    - One of the founders of ye olde Competitive Cyclist is Craig Zediker. He’s doing the Leadville 100 MTB race for like the 7th year in a row this year. Every year he scores himself the fancy belt buckle for a fast finish, and it seems like every year he takes scalps from some interesting characters. Last year we noted, for instance, that he beat Chris Carmichael by a nice margin. Yes, Carmichael looks and acts a wee bit too much like a celebrity chef for our liking. But we recognize that he did the Tour in ’86 as part [...]

    We took an all-too-brief trip to Italy in late July to visit the Pinarello factory, get a sneak peek at the ’09 Pinarello line, and to do the Granfondo Pinarello. We were thrilled by what we saw: At the tip-top of the Pinarello line you’ll see very little change except for new paint. In the last 5 years Pinarello has emerged as the undisputed king of the Italian bicycle industry. In terms of innovation, beauty, and ride quality they’ve asserted themselves like no other Italian family. Pinarello’s top dog frame, the Prince Carbon, in various states of paint. There were [...]

    - Any comments we make about the ’08 Tour de France in this ‘What’s New’ entry should be prefaced by the following email exchange that occurred in early June. Based on this, feel free to dismiss everything we say: -----Original Message----- From: Gerard Vroomen Sent: Friday, June 06, 2008 9:37 AM To: Brendan Quirk Subject: RE: 2008 Cervélo SLC-SL Limited Edition SRAM Red Complete Bike – Competitive Cyclist I’ll save this e-mail. Gerard Vroomen | Co-founder Website: www.cervelo.com | www.cervelo.tv -----Original Message----- From: Brendan Quirk Sent: Friday, June 06, 2008 9:35 AM To: Gerard Vroomen Subject: RE: 2008 Cervélo SLC-SL [...]

    The last 30 days for Team Garmin-Chipotle has been a media extravaganza. It’s indisputably newsworthy that the very core of the Slipstream business model has been validated: Clean cycling is indeed good business. It’s been proven by the big bucks put up by Garmin to sponsor their team. It’s probably no coincidence that the two other vocal self-policing teams of the professional peloton -- CSC and High Road -- also both recently picked up new big-dollar sponsors in Saxo Bank and Columbia. And the individual performances of Will Frischkorn and Christian Vandevelde so far during le Tour are no less [...]

    The Giordana Silverline jersey and bib offer premium performance at a not-so-premium price. Search the world over and you’ll never find a better value in a jersey and bib.

    Garage bands create timeless classics. They come at you with everything they’ve got with a true sound not often found with mega-label artists. The results are often perfect, catchy, and the bands develop a cult following. Ventana Mountain Bikes is the bike industry’s garage band. The lineup has changed a number of times over the years, but it now thrives as a tightly polished quintet, pumping out cult hits. Ventana started in a small Folsom, California garage in 1988, not a mile or two from the spot Johnny Cash recorded Folsom Prison Blues some 20 years prior. The garage was [...]

    WTB 2009: The rest of the story We were fortunate enough to join WTB in Downieville for their 2009 product launch a few weeks back, but we had to keep a lid on the details until today. As promised, we’ve got the scoop for you below: UST Tires – WTB has always had top-notch tread designs, and durable tires, but apart from the Weirwolf UST, their tubeless offerings have been practically non-existent. That’s all about to change for 2009. The WTB Wolverine tire, popular with the XC race ranks, will be offered in two UST widths: 1.95 (698g) and 2.2 [...]