It’s been a week full of news here on BikeRadar, so before we jump headfirst into another edition of First Look Friday, let’s take a look at some highlights from the week.
While we initially spotted it on the heads of WorldTour pros in March 2021, Giro has now officially launched the Eclipse Spherical helmet. Excitingly, it’s claimed to be both aerodynamic and well-ventilated, so it could be a low-compromise option for watt-conscious riders.
Rossignol, best known for its ski gear, has launched a new line of full-suspension mountain bikes, and Hope has announced its new Tech 4 brakes.
It’s been an exciting week for carbon road wheels fans, with FFWD launching the Tyro range (which notably included options for rim brake bikes), Cadex releasing the Cadex AR 35 Disc gravel wheelset and Hunt a new ultra-lightweight road wheelset called the 32 Aerodynamician.
Specialized has also released a new race-focused gravel tire, the S-Works Pathfinder. Said to be 20% faster and 210g lighter than the brand’s Pathfinder Pro tyre, it’s clearly aimed at the marginal winners of the gravel world.
This week also saw reviews of Endura’s new MT500 Burner Flat and MT500 Burner Clipless shoes, both of which impressed our testers.
Specialized Sitero Saddle
The Sitero saddle is Specialized’s specific time trial and triathlon saddle.
Designed in conjunction with Retül bike fitters, its aim is to provide maximum comfort when seated in a super-aggressive aero position (seated-aero – got it?).
Available in 130mm or 155mm widths, the sit bones are supported by medium density foam padding, either side of a wide central cutout, designed to reduce soft tissue pressure.
Riders who want softer padding can opt for the Sitero Plus, which uses the same shape and widths but comes with a lower-density foam padding.
Like most other time trial saddles, it also has a short overall length to enable riders to get up and over the bottom bracket, while not falling foul of the UCI’s strict rules on saddle positioning.
The base-level Sitero comes with Cr-Mo rails, which have 5cm of fore/aft adjustment available. It’s also possible to mount a bottle cage or other accessories on the rear of the saddle via an included mount.
Our 130mm sample weighs 251g and has an RRP of £110.
Having used an ISM Attack saddle on my time trial bike for many years, I’m keen to see whether there’s anything to be gained from swapping to something else.
Knowing how to change a bike tyre is an essential skill for any cyclist, but some rim and tyre combinations can prove tricky, even with tools such as tyre levers.
The Tye Glider is said to be “the next step in evolution for tyre levers”, and can help change even tough road, gravel or mountain bike tyres “in seconds, rather than minutes”.
While it looks much more complicated than a traditional tyre lever, it’s actually reasonably simple to use once you know what you’re doing, and makes light work of getting stubborn tyres on and off rims.
At a weight of just 21g, and no bigger than a traditional tyre lever, could it replace the well-used set of Park Tool tyre levers in my saddle bag? It’s definitely a possibility.
Ashdown Bags 3 Point Camera Strap
Without a reasonably sized handlebar or bike frame bag, carrying a camera with you on a bike ride can be tricky.
The Ashdown bags 3-point camera strap offers a lightweight, minimalist design with a universal fit on virtually all types of cameras.
The benefit of the second strap is that it prevents the camera from swinging forward, where it would get in the way of your knees when pedalling.
An auto-locating Fidlock magnetic buckle also allows quick access to your camera, should you need to react quickly to capture a decisive moment.
Given the lack of padding, it’s designed for lighter mirrorless or compact cameras. As each strap is made to order, however, this is something that can be customized if you plan on carrying a heavy camera with you.
Le Col x Wahoo Indoor Training Hat and Socks
With the seemingly unstoppable rise of indoor cycling apps such as Zwift, Wahoo SYSTM, TrainerRoad and RGT Cycling, the indoor cycling kit market is also growing at a rapid pace.
Of course, it’s totally possible to use any standard cycling socks and a traditional cotton cap, but trainers or dedicated indoor riders can optimize their kit a bit more with items like this .
As expected, the Le Col x Wahoo indoor training socks and cap both focus on breathability to help deal with the increased body heat generated while riding indoors.
The socks use a lightweight honeycomb structure that is supposed to optimize breathability, compression and comfort, and are cut high for a “pro look”.
As well as looking great, the cap uses a highly perforated fabric designed to maintain maximum breathability, while preventing sweat from your forehead from dripping into your eyes or onto your bike.