SPECIALIZED ROUBAIX EXPERT
£3800 › The Specialized’s extra comfort has been welcomed by section editor John
What was to be my bike for the 1000-mile Deloitte Ride Across Britain had to settle for more modest pursuits, due to my left shoulder injury that requires a surgical rebuild this autumn - an injury that forced my withdrawal. To combat Britain’s pot hole-strewn roads, the Roubaix seemed like a shrewd choice for the LEJOG sportive.
I’ve ridden various iterations of this bike down the years, and, as is expected from a bike built for winning on the cobbles of the Paris-Roubaix, it’s always been a very comfortable ride. That’s especially true of the latest Roubaix. There are various nods to comfort throughout the frame, not least the elastomer-infused seatpost, but it’s the Future Shock ‘suspension’ beneath the headset  that is the biggest development.
Future Shock, which suspends the rider rather than the bike, has a strict diet of bumps and holes - and it loves to be fed. Three di!erent "rmness of spring can be "tted into the system; it came "tted with black - the mid-level spring - but given how unstable my dislocated shoulder is, physio and bike "tter Phil Burt suggested I try the yellow spring. This still o!ers the bene"ts of Future Shock, even in the "rmest variation of it. I haven’t tried the least "rm blue spring, but lighter riders may see bene"ts from it. Switching the springs is just a "ve-minute job.
Elsewhere, the hydraulic disc brakes are a joy - I’m a total convert - and the SWAT kit box , that can be "tted at the junction of the seat- and down-tube, is a neat alternative to a saddle pack for storing supplies.
Future Shock, which suspends the rider rather than the bike, has a strict diet of bumps and holes – and it loves to be fed