I need a faster bicycle

"ON YOUR LEFT!"

I need a new bicycle. Consider the evidence:

  • I’ve been caught and passed on Foothill Expressway this week by –
    • A large fella on a Trek Navigator hybrid bike with monster panniers;
    • A teen school girl with big foppy sneakers on a blue, full suspension Bike Shaped Object (BSO) with a squeaky chain;
    • Mr Bean;
    • A short octogenarian Asian woman toting her great-grandson on a mamachari; and even
    • Chris Cowan.

  • Getting passed by these people is bad for my ego as a professional bicycling blogger, and it’s bad for my reputation. My readers absolutely depend on my good name for their daily dose of bike news and commentary.
  • I’m clearly a better, stronger, and faster cyclist than all of these people. My jersey, socks, gloves, helmet, shades, shoes and bar tape all match, after all!
  • I ride a Specialized Roubaix, which is like the comfort bike of road bikes for old people.
  • Ken Conley, who is test riding the $6,700 Storck Absolutist 0.9 (15 lbs, SRAM Red, Zipp wheels, “stiff yet comfortable” which I suppose is another way of saying “laterally stiff yet vertically compliant”), writes “I shattered some PRs on the bike,” clearly demonstrating that it is indeed about the bike.
  • Scientific research clearly demonstrates that newer bikes are faster.

Have I convinced you? Can you help me convince my wife? And which bike should I get?

Oh, and before I forget, I owe Warren T a link because he wrote a Baiku. But his post here made me laugh.

26 Comments

  • pierrequiroule
    August 8, 2008 - 10:40 am | Permalink

    You should buy my BMC Streetfire SSX, you'd get a swiss quality bike that is almost new and way faster than your Roubaix ;-)

  • pierrequiroule
    August 8, 2008 - 5:40 pm | Permalink

    You should buy my BMC Streetfire SSX, you'd get a swiss quality bike that is almost new and way faster than your Roubaix ;-)

  • Chris
    August 8, 2008 - 10:53 am | Permalink

    If I'm passing you then it is bad news! BTW there are a lot of people out there that need new bikes (according to that standard). Except for the guy who was going 24 mph on Middlefield Road the other day riding a really old clunky Cannonade. I did everything in my power to stay on his wheel but I just didn't have any gas left in me and he finally dropped me after about a mile.

    Good luck with the new request for a bike. I've learn to just make due with my Surly Cross Check and some lighter wheels.

  • Chris
    August 8, 2008 - 5:53 pm | Permalink

    If I'm passing you then it is bad news! BTW there are a lot of people out there that need new bikes (according to that standard). Except for the guy who was going 24 mph on Middlefield Road the other day riding a really old clunky Cannonade. I did everything in my power to stay on his wheel but I just didn't have any gas left in me and he finally dropped me after about a mile.Good luck with the new request for a bike. I've learn to just make due with my Surly Cross Check and some lighter wheels.

  • James T.
    August 8, 2008 - 10:59 am | Permalink

    Ken may say it is about the bike, but I bet he has a pretty good motor too.

  • James T.
    August 8, 2008 - 5:59 pm | Permalink

    Ken may say it is about the bike, but I bet he has a pretty good motor too.

  • kwc
    August 8, 2008 - 11:42 am | Permalink

    @Fritz: the Look 596 looks pretty fast… You know you'd look hot commuting through Menlo Park on a TT bike ;)

    @James: I'm still watching others go up the road on climbs, so not yet — maybe I need a $10K bike ;)

  • kwc
    August 8, 2008 - 6:42 pm | Permalink

    @Fritz: the Look 596 looks pretty fast… You know you'd look hot commuting through Menlo Park on a TT bike ;)@James: I'm still watching others go up the road on climbs, so not yet — maybe I need a $10K bike ;)

  • Khalid
    August 8, 2008 - 12:16 pm | Permalink

    Posts like this really make me cherish unmarried life.

  • Khalid
    August 8, 2008 - 7:16 pm | Permalink

    Posts like this really make me cherish unmarried life.

  • LegoAndy
    August 8, 2008 - 12:47 pm | Permalink

    It's not how fast you go. It's how fast you look!

    Put some flashy jersey on, color coordinated helmet and socks and get rid of panniers, backpacks, bags etc.

    Then for the finish touch, add some brand new components on the bike like Ultegra SL Compact Crank and aero bars and you are all set.

  • LegoAndy
    August 8, 2008 - 7:47 pm | Permalink

    It's not how fast you go. It's how fast you look!Put some flashy jersey on, color coordinated helmet and socks and get rid of panniers, backpacks, bags etc.Then for the finish touch, add some brand new components on the bike like Ultegra SL Compact Crank and aero bars and you are all set.

  • Jennifer
    August 8, 2008 - 12:49 pm | Permalink

    Ah, but the faster you go, the heavier it gets.

    It's all relative, after all. :-)

  • Jennifer
    August 8, 2008 - 7:49 pm | Permalink

    Ah, but the faster you go, the heavier it gets.It's all relative, after all. :-)

  • curtis
    August 8, 2008 - 3:02 pm | Permalink

    Think of all the money you save by not buying a ski boat. You need a new bike. It's only right. Plus the state needs the tax money for schools. You are doing for the children, the future!

  • curtis
    August 8, 2008 - 10:02 pm | Permalink

    Think of all the money you save by not buying a ski boat. You need a new bike. It's only right. Plus the state needs the tax money for schools. You are doing for the children, the future!

  • Yokota Fritz
    August 8, 2008 - 3:20 pm | Permalink

    @pierre: That BMC looks hot. Even Paris Hilton would approve of that bike.

    @kwc: Will the Look handle the bumpy roads over the Santa Cruz Mountains okay?

    @chris: Your Surly is clearly faster than my bike. Maybe that's the one I should invest in.

    @james: You've met Ken and know he's a skinny, underfed, rice eating Japanese boy. It's clearly the machinery, not the engine, that makes him go fast.

    @khalid: Here's the song for you, man. :-)

    @jen: I don't think I'm quite up to relativistic speeds, yet.

    @curtis: Absolutely!!!

  • Yokota Fritz
    August 8, 2008 - 10:20 pm | Permalink

    @pierre: That BMC looks hot. Even Paris Hilton would approve of that bike.@kwc: Will the Look handle the bumpy roads over the Santa Cruz Mountains okay?@chris: Your Surly is clearly faster than my bike. Maybe that's the one I should invest in.@james: You've met Ken and know he's a skinny, underfed, rice eating Japanese boy. It's clearly the machinery, not the engine, that makes him go fast.@khalid: Here's the song for you, man. :-)@jen: I don't think I'm quite up to relativistic speeds, yet.@curtis: Absolutely!!!

  • kwc
    August 8, 2008 - 3:49 pm | Permalink

    @Fritz: I may be skinny, but there's no one out there who's accused me of being underfed before. Also, it's rice AND potatoes with every meal.

    As for the Look 596, the Storck has taught me that speed and comfort are opposing qualities, and you asked for speed :). But Boonen did look pretty happy in that Specialized commerical on his Tarmac.

  • kwc
    August 8, 2008 - 10:49 pm | Permalink

    @Fritz: I may be skinny, but there's no one out there who's accused me of being underfed before. Also, it's rice AND potatoes with every meal. As for the Look 596, the Storck has taught me that speed and comfort are opposing qualities, and you asked for speed :). But Boonen did look pretty happy in that Specialized commerical on his Tarmac.

  • kwc
    August 8, 2008 - 3:52 pm | Permalink

    … and the Look 585 is the new comfort bike for old people. And by old, I mean 28 going on 29.

  • kwc
    August 8, 2008 - 10:52 pm | Permalink

    … and the Look 585 is the new comfort bike for old people. And by old, I mean 28 going on 29.

  • Adriel
    August 10, 2008 - 10:47 am | Permalink

    The destination is nothing, the journey is everything. Going faster robs you of more of the journey.

    On and off the bike.

    However the more you ride, the stronger you get, and the faster you get. If a new bike will make you ride more, then get one.

    :)

  • Adriel
    August 10, 2008 - 5:47 pm | Permalink

    The destination is nothing, the journey is everything. Going faster robs you of more of the journey.On and off the bike.However the more you ride, the stronger you get, and the faster you get. If a new bike will make you ride more, then get one. :)

  • bikesgonewild
    August 10, 2008 - 11:41 am | Permalink

    …while you undoubtedly deserve a new bike, fritz, & i'll bet even your wife would agree, you know i'm biting my tongue from any further comments re: your getting caught & passed…

    …right ???…

    …now, bikes…we can talk about bikes…

  • bikesgonewild
    August 10, 2008 - 6:41 pm | Permalink

    …while you undoubtedly deserve a new bike, fritz, & i'll bet even your wife would agree, you know i'm biting my tongue from any further comments re: your getting caught & passed……right ???……now, bikes…we can talk about bikes…

  • Leave a Reply