We swapped bikes …


We swapped bikes for the day.

Even since I rebuilt the Roberts, my son has wanted to ride it. After all, he helped select  the new components and with the build.

Even since my son acquired his full carbon Cervelo R5, I have wanted to ride it. Who wouldn’t want to ride a bike favoured by many of the pros.

Today was the day.

This morning I loaded the bikes onto the hitch rack, pickup up my son (and his partner (and bike), and we headed north to Squamish to cycle the valley roads, a popular destination for road cyclists. We did this fast 70 km ride together, averaging 30-35 km over rolling terrain (faster on the flats, slower on the climbs), each taking short turns pulling, maintaining a fast pace for just over 2 hours.

Imagine that. I kept pace with these youngsters.


My son and I are the same size. Well almost. He is 10 pounds lighter and more powerful  but our dimensions are about the same. We simply swapped out the pedals and began cycling. We didn’t need to adjust the saddle height or position.

The Cervelo R5 fit me perfectly. Even my kit matched the bike. Take a careful look. This bike is setup for speed. Dura-Ace wheel set. 23 mm tires. Sram Red group. Carbon bars. And, the stem is set as low as possible. It many ways, it is similar to my Garneau just a little lighter and stiffer.

Lou: “This doesn’t sound good.”

I was worried the setup would be too aggressive for me. That I would not be able to maintain this more aerodynamic position for any length of time. And, the bars are narrower than I am accustomed to. I ride with 420 mm bars. His are 400 mm. I was concerned I would feel unstable. On the contrary, this bike fit better than mine. Say what? Yes, this bike felt like a glove. I pushed hard for over 2 hours and felt no discomfort. None.

And my son. Well, he loved the Roberts. Loved the comfort of the steel frame, and longer wheel base. Loved the 50/34 compact setup which allowed him to spin faster, more easily. And, he loved the larger, 25 mm tires that absorbed even more of the road chatter.

He loved the Roberts.

I loved the Cervelo.

What a great ride.

Chas: “I’m not surprised. What isn’t there to love?”

What did I like best?

The Sram Red group. The hoods are a little smaller than the Shimano, and fit my hands better. One paddle gears up, and down. One positive sounding click, one gear up. Two clicks, one gear down. It took some getting used to, and I missed several changes, but in the end, I liked the Scram shifting. I may actually prefer it to the Shimano.

Chas: “What are you thinking now?”

Chas and Lou needn’t worry but I may change their setups a little. I think we can go even faster.