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    2008 Pegoretti Frameset ETA 2007 was a rough and tumble year for Dario Pegoretti due to the aggressive course of cancer treatment he took to fight his lymphoma. The great news is this: From everything we’re being told, the outcome has been very positive. He beat the cancer down, and he’s healthy once again. It’s obvious to us he has boundless newfound energy, because his frames have been arriving to the US at a clip we haven’t seen in years. We’re grateful for the inventory, of course, but we’re even more grateful for the fact this symbolizes his good health. [...]

    First Endurance PreRace

    If you’re like most, you “coked up” today. Whether it was the bitter bean, the sweet black gold, the sophisticated tea, you got the buzz. It’s not like it’s a crutch, just something you’ve come to depend on to get you through life, to paraphrase Bobby Hill of “King of the Hill”. Whatever it is, the purpose is clear; it gets those neurons firing, the synapses jumping, pulse quickening, oxygen-uptake increasing, fat burning, etc. You do it for speed, whether or not you realize it. Makes you wonder if the Western world could have become what it is without, and [...]

    The pinnacle of warm-weather jersey design. Four different fabrics and multiple panels combine to make it our most technical jersey for riding in the summer heat.

    As we write this What’s New entry, Christmas is just a few days away and it’s a natural moment to reflect on the Year That Was. We had a lot of great things happen here at Competitive Cyclist. Our business continues to grow at a rate far beyond our rosiest projections. We’ve had a stellar year for addressing fundamentals: Our bike build QC process is now thoroughly dialed, and as a result we’ve seen a near-total elimination of erroneous component installation and UPS shipping damage; our overall order fill rate is higher than ever before; and our errors-per-order-line rate is [...]

    The first wheel ever to show positive drag in a wind tunnel. At 15 degrees of yaw the Zipp Sub 9 Disc showed a -80g drag reading creating lift rather than making drag.

    Rapha Cycling Cap

    Looks great on the bike or off. Windproof, waterproof, and noticeably more substantial than other caps. Comfortable, yet snug elastic band keeps it in place; brim is lined with antibacterial.

    Oakley Radar

    Oakley’s first cycling specific design in 15 years. Hydrophobic lenses repel water and moisture, and surge ports prevent fogging. High Definition Optics insure a crystal-clear field of vision.

    When Speedplay first debuted their Zero pedals, some considered it a step backward for the pedal company. The older X/2 pedals weighed in at 198g/pair while the new Zeros weighed in at 206g/pair. This is for the versions with the stainless steel pedal spindles, not the freakishly-light titanium spindles that have a weight limit (185lbs max). The Zero weighed in at 52.5g each as opposed to 42.5g each. Overall system weight for the Zero is 324g vs. 308g when using shoes with the three-hole mounting standard. In a world where newer should be lighter, that Speedplay would make the new [...]

    It would be too easy to say Interbike has become irrelevant. The signs are all there, of course, that North America’s one-and-only trade show has outlived its usefulness to the bike industry. The European equivalent to Interbike -- Eurobike -- takes place a full month beforehand. All the North American industry A-players make the trip to Freidrichshafen, and and do a superb job in covering the new product releases there. So, in short, nothing at Interbike is ever new anymore: Everyone has either seen it in person or online already. And, to boot, the industry as a whole [...]

    All the bike industry big guns have tasty treats forthcoming in 2008: Shimano has their carbon fiber Dura-Ace crankset. Mavic revamped their entire high-end wheelset portfolio. And rumor has it that Assos will give their bib short line the same sort of face lift they gave their jerseys in ’07. But no new product intro has had the same seismic effect as the new SRAM Red road gruppo. What is Red? Here’s your 50-words-or-less answer: SRAM took the fundamental functionality of their Force gruppo and souped it up with a cost-is-no-object mentality. The shifting (specifically between chainrings) is vastly enhanced. [...]

    Just because you love to ride pro-quality bikes doesn’t necessarily mean you have the time, the interest or even the tools to work on one. This is a discovery that some of our customers make at the worst possible moment: The day on which UPS delivers their brand new bike. Our standard shipping box provides you a bike that requires minimal re-assembly — install the wheels, attach the handlebar to the stem, insert the seatpost, then affix the pedals and you’re done. But for our mechanically-disinclined customers, this seemingly basic chore of re-assembly can be a trying experience. After all, [...]

    Wake up wake up! 2008 is here! Proof of it comes in the fact that we’re now in possession of the ’08 Colnago catalog (available here for your viewing & downloading pleasure (PDF 5.8MB)). Thank goodness they didn’t send it to the printer before ex-Rabobanker Michael Rasmussen got booted from the Tour -- all those trees would’ve died in vain. We’ll present exhaustive detail on the changes for ’08 (or ‘Extreme Detail’, as Colnago might phrase it…) including ’08 Colnago pricing in the upcoming weeks, but here is a quick list of the highlights: The core Colnago line is basically [...]

    Thanks to everyone who entered the Competitive Cyclist Dreambike Sweepstakes during July. We received an astounding number of entries, and we’re grateful to everyone who entered, and to everyone who did business with us during what turned out to be one of the more, um, eventful Tours in recent memory. Congratulations to all of our winners. Keep your eyes peeled for a similar promotion during the 2008 Tour de France. Cervelo SLC-SL Dreambike Jennifer Glover – Seattle, WA SRM Professional Powermeter Jeff Lind – Los Gatos, CA Zipp Zedtech Wheelset James Blumberg – Steliacoom, WA Ruth Stockhammer – Des Plaines, [...]

    Vive le Tour! Ahhh, how we love the Tour de France -- it’s the not-so-quiet quiet before the storm for next year’s new product introductions. Who hasn’t salivated over the carbon fiber version of the Shimano Dura Ace cranksets seen on the Gerolsteiner bikes or the Cosmic Carbone Ultimates on the Cofidis bikes? We’ve even spotted a glimpse or two of electronic Campagnolo Record. Naturally, everyone wants to know if electronic Record (and electronic Dura Ace, for that matter) will be available in the 2008 season. The answer, we’re sad to report, is no for both companies. We’ll all have [...]

    It’s easy to ignore the ProTour’s hot stove season. After all, most of the superstar transfers are finalized well before the World Championships, and we admit our interest in the World Cup cyclocross scene is quite dim. The sleepy autumn and early winter months provide ample opportunity to rest not just our legs, but our interest in race results and gossip. Provocative stories are always there for the having, though, and as much as we tried to hibernate for a bit this fall we couldn’t help but keep one eye on the slow-motion train wreck otherwise known as the Sony [...]

    Competitive Cyclist will host a Titus Demo Day at Allsopp Park in Little Rock on Saturday, June 16, from 10:00 – 2:00. The Titus Demo Truck will have Titus Road and Mountain Bikes in a variety of sizes including the Moto Lite, El Guapo and legendary Racer X mountain bikes (aluminum, 29er and ExoGrid models). And, the Modena, Solera, Vuela, and ExoGrid road bikes will be available as well. Titus is defined by their unwavering commitment to technology. It shows most famously in their Exogrid series of bikes -- Ti frames whose laser-cut, carbon-reinforced tubes possess the futuristic sex appeal [...]

    Note to Dario

    Many of you are aware that Dario Pegoretti was diagnosed with lymphoma in May, 2007. While Dario’s skill at building artful and wickedly fast bike frames has made him legendary across the globe, he’s perhaps more loved as bon viveur. Who amongst us doesn’t consider him a soulmate? 10 minutes of conversation with Dario is like a riff from your favorite song, or a passage from your favorite book. His interests are so vast and his exuberance so limitless that few people don’t feel like they share an entire worldview with him. We’re willing him from across the Atlantic to [...]

    First Endurance is a name that’s coming up more and more in cycling nutrition discussions. It helps that they’re starting to advertise and sponsor teams. But we’ve been aware of them for some time, as should any eagle-eyed customer. When we started working on this review, we left the Ultragen and Electrolyte Fuel System (EFS) out on our kitchen counter. We came home that night to mix bottles for our morning ride. While we were mixing, we were hit with an insatiable thirst. Rather than reaching for water or juice, we went for the freshly mixed bottle of Lemon-Lime EFS. [...]

    When the BMC Cycling Team surged to the front of the field late in the final stage of the 2007 Tour of California, many people were surprised. Some might not have even noticed the team at all during the race. And considering they missed the day’s breakaway and their best finish was David Vitoria’s 10th place on the first road stage, it didn’t seem like they had a horse for the finish. They had no reason to be at the front. Fans pulling for the breakaway were annoyed, and those who wanted to see the Discovery team earn their victory [...]

    Has anyone wandered into their local bike shop and seen a chain that is so neglected and rusty it can stand up in the corner of the shop? It’s sad but true that most of us can answer yes to this question. There are people out there who abuse their chains and never give them the proper love. Perhaps even some of us are guilty of chain neglect. The fact is, many people who ride bikes pay little attention to their chains. It seems strange that we often overlook such a crucial component of our drive system. Surely it is [...]

    Stage racing can be as much about logistics as it is racing. This goes for both all those involved with the race and all those watching it. You need not only a map and a timetable, knowledge of how to get to the next spot, but how to do all without going crazy, getting stressed, knowing when to expend energy, when to save it, where to eat, etc…All those in the race need to be up by a certain time, know where breakfast is and how to get there, eat enough, finish in time, get two bags packed, and get [...]

    The Floyd Fairness Fund arrived at the Brooklyn Brewery Wednesday February 7. Unless you were in the know, the Brooklyn, NY event was under the radar. The FFF site, had mention of it, but the real work was done by local cyclists who spread the word on local websites and listservs. The event was listed as a “Town Hall Fundraiser,” and was informational, political, and designed to build grassroots support for the cause. The Floyd Fairness Fund was first announced in January. It was “established to support Floyd Landis in his efforts to clear his name of unsubstantiated doping allegations [...]

    There’s a balance in stage racing. Long stages are often easier than short. Short stages take a long time when you include all the preparation and waiting and transfers. Flat stages can be harder than mountain stages. Domestiques get to rest when the team leader is going his maximum. The Solvang time trial of the 2007 Tour of California demonstrated all of the above. It was a short day, but a long transfer. The circuit was simple, but for the favorites every corner and every hill took on great import. Riders who had no stake in the overall wanted to [...]

    We can’t say it wasn’t expected: Cervélo bikes are proving to be the hottest item in the high-end bike market since the invention of the rear derailleur. It’s a continuation of what we saw in 2006 -- we’re hard-pressed to find another brand that matches their combination of lightness, stiffness, aerodynamics, durability, and style. One great piece of news has been the delivery of Cervélo’s new-for 2007 colors and models. With only a few exceptions, we have every 2007 color and model in stock in almost all sizes. We’re still a bit touch-and-go on the availability of the Soloist Carbon [...]