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Best Touring / Racing Bike

Discussion in 'Bikes and Buying Advice - What Bike?' started by GCHLewis, 28 Jun 2008.

  1. GCHLewis

    GCHLewis New Member

    I am about due to set off on a trip from London to the south of Spain and am in need of a new bike (I have just had one stolen). When I return I would like to do some racing. Therefore I was wondering if anyone knew what the fastest touring bike there is, or any racing bikes that can hold panniers with a bit of weight? I have heard that the Dawes Audax Sport is decent, any thoughts? (Budget around 600)
  2. RedBike

    RedBike New Member

    Beside the road
    The dawes sport has Sora shifters and a compact chainset.

    Sora shifters making changing gear from on the drops near impossible. The compact gearing might leave you under-geared on some of the really quick descents.

    I've done a few races on my Ribble winter bike. It's on the heavy side but seems to have a good turn of speed (with the mud-guards / racks removed)
  3. GCHLewis

    GCHLewis New Member

    Appreciate your advice. How do you feel it take some panniers and a bit of weight?
  4. Alf

    Alf Senior Member

    You will find that a bike that is designed as a race bike will feel twitchy to someone used to the stability of a tourer. That also means that if you put panniers on a race bike you will feel the effect of the load on the way the bike handles more than if you put the same luggage on a tourer. Having said that, the bike I ride every day (often with a single pannier weighing up to 10Kg is basically a race bike but with mudguard clearance, braze-ons for a rack, etc. Nowadays bikes like this are generally called audax bikes and if you want to mix the two ends of the spectrum - touring and racing on the same bike, it is probably want you want.

    There is quite a big selection and you really have to choose your price and your other priorities. If you really get into racing, you are going to want a pure race bike before too long, so you can bear that in mind if you are thinking of what compromises to make.

  5. GCHLewis

    GCHLewis New Member

    Thanks Alf. You're right that an Audax is what I'm after. You make a good point about the bike handling better with weight on a tourer. I think I have to realise it's impossible to get the best of both worlds.

    Anyone with any experience of an audax bike?
  6. RedBike

    RedBike New Member

    Beside the road
    The Ribble doesn't feel to bad with the panniers. The frame is very stiff so it copes with the extra weight very well. However, I wouldn't recommend it as a tourer.

    You can only fit 23mm tyres on it. These are a little bit too thin for a heavily laiden tourer. The frames also very stiff. Great for racing but a little bit on the harsh side for long days in the saddle.

    The seat-stays are also quite short. I have to be carefull how I fit my pannier bags to the rack or I bang my heals on the bags.

    My preference would be for a second-hand reynolds 853 frame (audax / sportive), light enough to race on, comfortable enough to tour on.
  7. P.H

    P.H Über Member

  8. GCHLewis

    GCHLewis New Member

    The Kenisis does look great. Pricing is the only issue here, as I think my budget can only really stretch to 700 pounds. It's so easy to keep stretching the budget everytime I see something I like, and it's hard to put a cap on it!
  9. P.H

    P.H Über Member

    If you don't mind putting it together yourself, you could easily do it within that budget. I spent nearly £800 on mine, but I choose Campag and wheels built by Paul Hewitt. I did cost it with Spa Cycles wheels and Tiagra, it came to £640 including having the BB and Headset fitted.
  10. GrahamG

    GrahamG Über Member

    Second-hand old steel frame mtb for the tour (get some solid new handbuilt wheels for it though and upgrade any worn drivetrain parts) and then spend out on a racer when you get back.