The September issue of Cycling Plus is out now

Scoring on debut? The new bikes making a splash this summer

Every year there are scores of new brands and models trying to make their mark. Against established names, this is rarely an easy feat. So this issue we give some love to the new kids on the block, whether that’s brands new to the UK or just new full stop, testing bikes from the likes of Evo2Max, Thompson, Ironbridge, Pilot and Chapter 2.

We have first rides of the Look 765HM Ultegra Di2, Sonnet Road MK1, Sven Cycles Pathfinder and Merida Scultera 5000, and reviews of kit including Vittoria Legend shoes, Pro Vibe Aero Carbon cockpit, Beeline Smart Compass and Vittoria VH-Ikon MIPS helmet.

We also have our biggest, toughest locks test ever, visiting the facilities of Germany’s biggest security manufacturer and putting models from the big lock makers on the market through a barrage of abuse.

The new kids on the block, in the blocks and ready to go
The new kids on the block, in the blocks and ready to go

In features, we give you a taster of the new rules of nutrition, so you can get to know your vitamin B from your beta-alanine. We hear from the people for whom cycling isn’t merely a hobby, but a genuinely transformative machine, put three Italian bikes head-to-head(-to head) around the Scottish Borders, and follow the Tour de France with sponsors Tissot — the time keepers who had their work cut out this year.

Get to know your vit B from your beta-alanine
Get to know your vit B from your beta-alanine

In Training Camp, we show you how to climb like Simon Yates, survive multi-day rides with tips from Frank Schleck, use milk to boost recovery and prepare for a cyclocross race.

In Big Ride, we fled the June heatwave (seems an awful long time ago now) for the cooler climes of the Faroe Islands. Sandwiched between Norway and Iceland, though part of Denmark, this archipelago left a lasting mark on the staffers who went out there. We'll be back, as soon as we've warmed up.

Ned Boulting is back from his 15th Tour de France — and second as lead commentator on ITV — and he’s got stories to share. And in The Spin, we wonder how anyone wins something as complex, fraught and seemingly random as the Tour de France more than once, let alone four times.

What else have we got? Oh yes, a free 36-page guide to the 2017 Tour of Britain. No eye-catching mountain top finishes this year, but the ‘flat’ route should make for a tight battle to the finish.

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This article was originally published in Cycling Plus magazine, available on Apple Newsstand and Zinio.

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