After a long descent the other day on my "other " wheels, my Mavic Ksyrium ESs, I have decided the wheels on the bike in this photo (Mavic Cosmic Carbone), are being left behind when I go to the Tour de France this year. This is like telling one boyfriend that I am taking another to France.
These fancy wheels have a rear power tap. A power tap measures my watts. I am supposed to care about my watts, but I don't, enough. It has always been difficult for me to explain to another rider next to me, that they should slow down and not power up the base of a climb because my personal watts might go too high. I realize high watts sound like a good thing, but they're not if I intend to ride day after day, or keep my head out of the soup bowl at dinner time.
Wouldn't you agree these wheels make my Scott CR1 look good? They match. Matching is a good thing in cycling. My bike gets called slick bike and flashy bike when we are out in public, which is often. I had an old friend with the nickname Slick, and an old boyfriend with the nickname Flash (true cycling nicknames), so I cringe when I receive these compliments. Just call my bike Luke. There is a much better story behind that name.
On ascents and descents, the wheels pictured here feel like what I can imagine the wooden wheels on the covered wagon trains must have felt like. They may look good, but they are heavy and they are not fun. (I'm talking about the wheels again, not the old boyfriend). People like to argue with me that these are great wheels, but I weigh in at less than 130 lbs, so they only feel fun to me when zipping around corners.
Besides who needs a slick flashy bike in France. Riding in France is all about the steep climbs, and the long descents. I want to enjoy the glorious descent off the Col d' Aubisque lightweight and carefree.
I also happen to know this lighter version of my bike, plus bike box, weigh in at 49 lbs; just under the airline baggage weight allowance. Perfect!
Post post update March 2011: I got new wheels! A beautiful set of Reynolds MV32C UL, sweet!
The Mavic Ksyrium wheels below came with me to France in 2010, but the new Reynolds are more deserved of a trip to Italy. (photo coming soon)