Core Bike 2009: The best of the tarmac tamers

Sexy Time, Tifosi and more

There wasn't too much never-seen-before road kit at Core Bike 2009 but that didn't stop us from wielding our camera with intent at Whittlebury Hall. Here's what we captured...

Time

The Time RXR Ulteam was arguably the hottest bike at the Core Bike show (notwithstanding the Colnago CF7). It's a road frame based on the design of their time trial machine, which means it should be more aerodynamic than Time's rounder-tubed models.

The frame is made from lugged carbon and comes with Time's Safe +2 forks, a stem, headset and seatmast head, with an overall weight of 1,700g. It features an integrated seatmast that still allows for some saddle height adjustment, and asymmetric chainstays that supposedly improve airflow and response.

The frame and fork alone cost £3,124.99, but for a mere £6,674.99 you can have it built up with Campagnolo Record 11-speed with Bora wheels. If you want to go cheaper, there is a Chorus 11-speed with Eurus wheels option for £4,999.99.

Time RXR Ulteam

Moving slightly down the Time scale there is the VXRS Ulteam World Star. This is a full round-tubed lugged carbon frame and fork. It again comes with an integrated seatmast, stem and headset, but total weight is reduced to just 1,605g. The World Star frameset also comes in a bit cheaper at £2,974.99. Built up with Record 11-speed and Eurus wheels, it's a snip at £4,999.99.

Time VXRS Ulteam World Star

Finally, Time's Speeder and Speeder S framesets may appeal to those with more modest budgets. These frames are monocoque rather than lugged, and are claimed to tip the scales at 1,540g (Speeder, frame only) and 1,583g (Speeder S, frame and fork). The Speeder frame retails for £999.99 while the Speeder S (including fork) goes for £1,499.99. Complete bikes can be had for £1,699.99 (Speeder with Shimano 105) to £2,074.99 (Speeder S with Shimano Ultegra).

Time Speeder S

Time bikes are imported to the UK by Chicken Cycles.

Quintana Roo

Triathlon experts Quintana Roo almost took over an entire exhibition room with their huge range, most impressive of which was the CD 0.1 prototype which will set you back a sweet £4,699. With a frame that has been painstakingly developed in the wind tunnel, Quintana claim it has the lowest ever drag coefficient – Cd0.1. An offset down tube allows wind to flow from the head tube and front wheel to the clean side of the bike (non-drive side), making for a super-quick ride. 

Quintana CD 0.1

The Chicqilo is Quintana’s aluminium entry-level women’s triathlon bike priced at £1,700 and has had a redesign for 2009. Components include Shimano Dura-Ace shifters, FSA Omega Compact cranks and ALX 220 wheelset.

Quintana Chicqilo

Quintana are distributed in the UK by Paligap.

De Rosa

We spotted this stylish blue De Rosa Avant frame nestled in the corner of Jim Walker's stand. The frame is carbon monocoque and is available in five sizes, from 52 to 59cm. They're usually sold as complete bikes, specced with Campagnolo Veloce and Campag Khamsin wheels, Deda Quattro Fluida bars and stem and a Fizik Arione saddle. The UK retail price is £2,499.00.

De Rosa Avant

Argon 18

Jim Walker also brings Argon 18 bikes into the UK. Argon 18 make several time trial/triathlon frames, the E-80, E-112 and the top-end E-114. They have taken "integration" to another level with the E-114 carbon frameset which feature an integrated fork, headset, handlebars, extensions, brakes and levers. In other words, all of these components have been designed to work with this frame in order to maximise aerodynamic efficiency.

Argon 18 E-114 frameset

Other features include the mounting of the front brake behind the fork, again designed to improve aerodynamics, and a seatpost with two settings to give you an effective seat tube angle of 76º or 78º, along with the normal saddle tilt and fore-aft adjustment.

The full E-114 frameset is priced at £2,199.99, which is comparable to other top-end time trial frames. If that sounds too pricey and not customisable enough, the E-112 at £1,299.99 might fit the bill. The frame is essentially the same as the E-114 but without any of the integrated components. The forks and seatpost are still included in the price.

Argon 18's Krypton 36 frame (top), E112 (middle) and E80 (bottom)

At the bottom end of the scale is the E-80. It's constructed of carbon fibre (rear triangle and fork) and aluminium (main triangle). It's not quite as aero as the other two frames (although it was been ridden to victory in two long-distance triathlon world championships), but is the most affordable at £799.99.

Litespeed

This is the latest bike from titanium bike builders Litespeed. Distributed in the UK by Paligap, the Archon is their top-of-the-range road bike and at £3,799 for frame, fork and headset, this high-performance roadster doesn’t come cheap.

It’s a beautiful frame, though, which has gone through many phases of development and can be custom fitted for each rider, along with personalised graphics and colours. Wrap technology is used on the frame – the titanium is manipulated at the headtube and bottom bracket in order to increase stiffness and improve ride quality.

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