The rider’s ride

Fifty­one, £5,800 (frame­set), ap­prox £11,000 as tested, fifty­onebikes.com

Cyclist - - United States -

This is a cus­tom car­bon rig built pre­cisely to my mea­sure­ments by Dublin frame­builder Fifty­one. As you might ex­pect, I got on fa­mously with it, es­pe­cially the paint, which Fifty­one de­signed with in­put from me and which drew ad­mir­ing looks all over Tuc­son. The stiff and racy brief was met with low slung ge­om­e­try, short fork trail and hand­picked tub­ing from Enve and Deda, and the sum of these parts was a bike that put me in a nat­u­rally ag­gres­sive po­si­tion, felt ready to de­liver plenty of power and swiv­elled on the prover­bial six­pence.

It did ev­ery­thing well, but re­ally came into its own on the long, swoop­ing de­scent of Mount Lem­mon. With 28mm Vit­to­ria Corsa G+ tyres the bike pro­duced oo­dles of grip, the Enve wheels eye­wa­ter­ing speed, and with the pad­dle-style shift­ing of Sram etap the Fifty­one felt more race-car than race-bike. How­ever, the real star here was the frame it­self, which had won­der­ful bal­ance and poise, and was a joy to spend all day ped­alling.

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