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Race The Training Thread

I know nothing about racing. But it seems to me that if Continental tyres are appallingly expensive, one might consider alternatives, such as Panaracer tyres.

As for the necessarily high prices of bulky or heavy goods imported from far away, may I offer for your consideration the prices of "Evian" branded water. I mean, I never buy the stuff, or any of its competitors (what I drink comes from the tap); but it allegedly comes all the way from France. Its importation is, I presume, ecologically disastrous; but the outfits responsible for this presumably make a profit out of it.

I'm as ignorant of economics as I am of racing, but I imagine that supply and demand curves and also "luxury" dictate prices. Evian is cheap because the punters would otherwise switch to Contrex; Specialized is expensive because fools crave admiration and envy from their mates.
 
I know nothing about racing. But it seems to me that if Continental tyres are appallingly expensive, one might consider alternatives, such as Panaracer tyres.

As for the necessarily high prices of bulky or heavy goods imported from far away, may I offer for your consideration the prices of "Evian" branded water. I mean, I never buy the stuff, or any of its competitors (what I drink comes from the tap); but it allegedly comes all the way from France. Its importation is, I presume, ecologically disastrous; but the outfits responsible for this presumably make a profit out of it.

I'm as ignorant of economics as I am of racing, but I imagine that supply and demand curves and also "luxury" dictate prices. Evian is cheap because the punters would otherwise switch to Contrex; Specialized is expensive because fools crave admiration and envy from their mates.
You used to be able to buy GP5000s for 5000 yen... Now they're closer to 13,000.

Thankfully, the tap water in my town is basically the same quality as bottled water... Makes great soda.
 
You used to be able to buy GP5000s for 5000 yen... Now they're closer to 13,000.

Thankfully, the tap water in my town is basically the same quality as bottled water... Makes great soda.
I've had good experiences with IRC for road, CX and Gravel.

I've never tried them but they have a tyre for 2,200 yen on Amazon called "jetty black".

Cheap as chips! But like I say, no idea how good they are. You can usually get the standard tyres in the 5 to 6,000 yen bracket.

Andy
 
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A few of my old classmates brag about buying the Yeti gift pack that includes a gallon sized drinking cup they fill with Diet Coke or Mountain Dew, and keep at an arms reach on the console of their SUV that they not only took a mortgage out on, but park as close as possible to Walmart's front door all the while complaining about gas prices. It's funny because they call me "weird." If by "weird" they mean that it is strange for me to be irritated and cursing at myself after a ride when I missed a Strava PR by a few seconds all because I didn't wax my chain, have my tire PSI just right and the wind direction was off by a few degrees then I'll accept that they might be right.

Anyway, I used to drink from a garden hose and I'm still kickin'. My disclaimer is that I let all the hot water run out of the hose first to "clean it out."
 
I've had good experiences with IRC for road, CX and Gravel.

I've never tried them but they have a tyre for 2,200 yen on Amazon called "jetty black".

Cheap as chips! But like I say, no idea how good they are. You can usually get the standard tyres in the 5 to 6,000 yen bracket.

Andy
I probably spend too much time on bicyclerollingresistance.com, which is why I end up paying too much for tires...
IRCs, Panasonics, and Bridgestones are half the price of foreign brands at this point. Not as good, but way cheaper.
I had an overall pretty bad experience with the Panasonic Agilest TL, though. Not including a puncture belt just seems like a lack of forethought.
 
I probably spend too much time on bicyclerollingresistance.com, which is why I end up paying too much for tires...
IRCs, Panasonics, and Bridgestones are half the price of foreign brands at this point. Not as good, but way cheaper.
I had an overall pretty bad experience with the Panasonic Agilest TL, though. Not including a puncture belt just seems like a lack of forethought.
Everyone has there own preferences on tyres.

I would never in a million years use Panaracer Gravel Kings again after my experiences with those for example.

I often go to Continental for road, I have some on there now, the only complaint of those is that (tubulars anyway) crack over time due to the hard nature of the rubber.

But yeah, trial and error! Never bothered looking at rolling resistence. 22mm Continental Podium TT on the TT bike. The mental boost of the name alone beats any claimed watt savings!

Andy
 
I would never in a million years use Panaracer Gravel Kings again after my experiences with those for example.

Uh-oh. They're on all but one of my bikes, and if they came in "16 inch" and "18 inch" sizes they'd be on the exception as well. They've been on all the bikes (except that one) for years. Maybe I have low expectations, but they haven't disappointed me. A friend had been using Continental Four Seasons on his bikes till he could no longer stomach their price; whereupon he switched to GravelKing, and the latter haven't disappointed him. What don't we know?

(Meanwhile, I hadn't heard of "Agilest", but it looks to me like Panaracer's drunken typo for "Ugliest".)
 
Everyone has there own preferences on tyres.

I would never in a million years use Panaracer Gravel Kings again after my experiences with those for example.

I often go to Continental for road, I have some on there now, the only complaint of those is that (tubulars anyway) crack over time due to the hard nature of the rubber.

But yeah, trial and error! Never bothered looking at rolling resistence. 22mm Continental Podium TT on the TT bike. The mental boost of the name alone beats any claimed watt savings!

Andy
Every winter, I end up with my road bike tires cracking in my garage from the cold. I really should keep them indoors.
They're still rideable, as far as I can tell.
 
Uh-oh. They're on all but one of my bikes, and if they came in "16 inch" and "18 inch" sizes they'd be on the exception as well. They've been on all the bikes (except that one) for years. Maybe I have low expectations, but they haven't disappointed me. A friend had been using Continental Four Seasons on his bikes till he could no longer stomach their price; whereupon he switched to GravelKing, and the latter haven't disappointed him. What don't we know?

(Meanwhile, I hadn't heard of "Agilest", but it looks to me like Panaracer's drunken typo for "Ugliest".)
Happened to me twice.

Andy

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I know nothing about racing. But it seems to me that if Continental tyres are appallingly expensive, one might consider alternatives, such as Panaracer tyres.
GP5000 are not dedicated racing tires, they are do-it-all tires and have a reputation of being excellent. Prices more than doubling is really painful, because good tires are an upgrade I recommend to every cyclist ("Ditch the Gatorskins …").

I'd really like to replace my Pirellis with Vittorias, but I just can't justify it: they are still in perfect condition, there is nothing wrong with them.

XTR M9000 1x chain rings cost a fortune in Europe now, too. Cheapest I could find was about 150 €, about 24,000 ¥! For a single chain ring! Not even gold-plated. (When I bought one in Japan 2 years ago, I paid 12,000 ¥ for it, still a boatload. Fortunately, I got a bargain from Rotor, 30 € + shipping.)
 
After suffering riding on my crossbikes OEM high pressure 32c road tires I replaced them with 38c Gravelking SemiSlicks and have been pleased so far. And I just picked up a set of 43c tubeless ready GK SS (<¥5,000/pair!) my for newish gravel bike to replace its OEM 38c tube only tires. And Yamato just delivered these. Fun days ahead!
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Happened to me twice.
I know that I don't like what I see here. But I don't know what it is. My first guess is that it's a sound tyre, properly attached to a buckled rim. I suppose that a tyre could come off at speed and thereby cause an accident that in turn would buckle a rim ... but no, not here. Pray tell. Unless, of course, the memory is too painful....

The photo is a reminder that "Gravelking" is a brand name attached to wide range of products. My own Gravelkings are 28 mm (on two bikes) and 32 mm (on the third), and aren't for tubeless use; and two, perhaps three of the pairs of rims also aren't for tubeless use. And the tyres are almost slick (certainly they don't have even the slightest knobblies).
 
I know that I don't like what I see here. But I don't know what it is. My first guess is that it's a sound tyre, properly attached to a buckled rim. I suppose that a tyre could come off at speed and thereby cause an accident that in turn would buckle a rim ... but no, not here. Pray tell. Unless, of course, the memory is too painful....

The photo is a reminder that "Gravelking" is a brand name attached to wide range of products. My own Gravelkings are 28 mm (on two bikes) and 32 mm (on the third), and aren't for tubeless use; and two, perhaps three of the pairs of rims also aren't for tubeless use. And the tyres are almost slick (certainly they don't have even the slightest knobblies).
The tyre just became deformed like that after 3 gravel rides. The tyres were inflated to 2.5 bar or so.

I sent them in for inspection. And I got a standard response about the bead being good and air leaking from a puncture repair - there was no puncture repair or air leakage for that matter.

I've tried lots of tyres for gravel riding and although there are still more to try, my favorite find until now is IRC BOKEN DOUBLECROSS.

But lke I say, everyone has different experiences and preferences.

Andy
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I've tried lots of tyres for gravel riding and although there are still more to try, my favorite find until now is IRC BOKEN DOUBLECROSS.
The S-Works Pathfinder 2Bliss Ready seems to have a great race pedigree, very highly rated in most reviews and is reasonably priced compared to top line gravel tires from other name brands. I was set on them until I saw the Gravelking bargain for ¥2,540 per tire. Now I can afford one of those blaster tubeless inflaters!
 
The S-Works Pathfinder 2Bliss Ready seems to have a great race pedigree, very highly rated in most reviews and is reasonably priced compared to top line gravel tires from other name brands. I was set on them until I saw the Gravelking bargain for ¥2,540 per tire. Now I can afford one of those blaster tubeless inflaters!

The tread is most important. It's worth thinking "horses for courses". You really notice this if you race cyclocross, where you will swap tyres for different courses, for the same courses under different weather conditions and even the same course, same weather at different times in the day / race category schedule.

Also skill level is important, so a more skillful rider can get away with less grip.

That looks like a nice tyre but for me personally and the rocky loose gravel we have here, I would want something a bit more knobbly on the side for loose gravel climbing and grip in loose gravel corners on descents.

But a more skilled rider, or a rider riding river path gravel, maybe not so.

I find that DoubleCross to be an "almighty" tyre which had good grip but due to the central raised strip is fast on asphalt too.

At the end of the day, regardless of reviews, or heresay from people like me, there's no substitute for trying different tyres and finding out what works for you.

Andy
 
The S-Works Pathfinder 2Bliss Ready seems to have a great race pedigree, very highly rated in most reviews and is reasonably priced compared to top line gravel tires from other name brands. I was set on them until I saw the Gravelking bargain for ¥2,540 per tire. Now I can afford one of those blaster tubeless inflaters!
The Pathfinder was my go to gravel tire in the US. I have raced it on wet, dry, hardpack, "baby head" gravel (that's what we called the big rocks back home), river rocks (river crossings), singletrack, etc. They never let me down in a race. According to the current exchange rate, they're even cheaper here! 6800y or ~45 USD compared to 55 USD. I always considered them more of a "bargain" even at 55 USD, especially compared to most road tire prices.

As consumers we all have good and bad experiences with brands. And we all have our own reasons for loving some and hating others. But, what's that old saying... "You get what you pay for"? At a certain point you start seeing the quality / enjoyment of your rides being impacted from cutting corners and pinching yen. Without a doubt you CAN enjoy the sport of cycling without spending a ton of money. Tires are just one place I'd never look to save money. You can get away with a lot of "cheap" things... but tires are what keep you rolling, literally.
 
Specialized is expensive because fools crave admiration and envy from their mates.

I admit, Specialized is a brand name. That carries a lot of value in itself. But to think they're a global leader in bicycle research and design simply because fools crave admiration and envy is a little... misguided.

It's important to always check our own expectations. Something I often forget to do, especially in an online setting. Cycling is my #1 hobby. I have very few reservations about spending a lot of money on the sport. Almost exactly a year ago I bought my Canyon for 600,000 yen (It was delivered on February 27th). Since then I have ridden it over 600 hours & over 17,500 kilometers. I'll easily have this bike for another year. And I can see myself owning it for a third. I'll have around 2,000 hours of time invested in this bike. I can't think of something I could have spent that money on, other than this bike, that would have had a better "return on investment" when measured in smiles per hour. I could crash tomorrow, destroy the frame, and still have the same feeling.

And, just to be sure, I would not have been able to have the same experiences (or fun) I've had while riding my Canyon on a steel bike from the 70s. Much cheaper, entirely different realm of bike. I'd have no problem forking over the money for a comperable Specialized given that I know what it's capable of. But... I did go for the Canyon because it was cheaper. Also MvDP rides one :cool:
 
I admit, Specialized is a brand name. That carries a lot of value in itself. But to think they're a global leader in bicycle research and design simply because fools crave admiration and envy is a little... misguided……

……Also MvDP rides one :cool:
As a novice really knew nothing about the top brand names. I bought my Specialized crossbike on impulse primarily because their Ginza e-bike store was the closest sports bike dealer to my flat. Only afterwards did I learn how big they were in cycling. What surprised me even more is how much more reasonable priced they are HERE. Maybe it's because Japan is closer to their Asian production and/or import duties are lower. 🤷🏼‍♂️ My new Diverge E5 cost the equivalent of about US$500 LESS than it was in their US online store, not including ~10% state sales tax I would pay on top if bought there.

Tsuga, I think these Oakley's might be your jam!
 
Haha, I knew what they were before I clicked the link! I do own a pair of Oakley Sutro Lite Sweeps... but I'm not such a fanboy to buy his version of the glasses. Just don't ask to see my phone's lock screen. It's definitely not WvA and MvDP.

I found that the model of Canyon I bought was cheaper here as well. It actually wasn't even on the US website when I looked. But, the price became more even after paying for the shipping & fees.
 
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