A year ago August, my loving wife Jane acceded to my wishes to get a new bike, and made it her birthday gift to me. I was originally looking for a carbon fiber bike on sale, and thought I had one lined up. But I ended up opting for a brand new Trek 2.1, that has a smooth-welded aluminum frame, carbon forks, stays, and seat post, and a modest-level Shimano drive train (for full details see the Specs page). Furthermore, it has an almost identical paint job to last year’s high-end Trek Madone, so successfully raced by Team Astana. It’s a flashy combination of white and subtly gradated shades of blue. I’d be watching the Tour of California and say “Hey, that’s Leipheimer on my bike!”
Since I got this bike I have loved riding it, perhaps because it is exactly right for my physical measurements. I don’t get tired on long rides, and (once I got used to it) the seat has been a paragon of comfort. Every time I return from a spin on the Trek I want to remind Jane that I really love this bike. Yesterday’s 32 mile ride was no exception. I know I can go as fast on this bike as I am able to make it go. So when I want to pass somebody on the trail I wait for an opening and then it’s full speed ahead. The bike accelerates in an almost astonishing way–when I power the pedals the machine almost seems ready to take off and ride itself out from under me. It’s hard to ride it at a leisurely rate because it just seems to want to go fast. But I occasionally make it stop and smell the roses.
The ride is stiff thanks to the aluminum, but not so stiff that every road bump is a shock. That’s the result of the carbon components. I like the combination of a little ‘give” around the edges and a rock-stable core. In terms of good engineering, quality construction, and solid road “feel,” this bike is it. So yesterday, after a great run, I thanked Jane once again. Nice bike!
©Arnold J. Bradford, 2010.