Allay Pro Racing 1.1 saddle£110.00

Inflatable perch

BikeRadar score3/5

Inflatable saddles are just the sort of daft concept someone had to come up with sooner or later. When you’ve stopped giggling, you’ll be shocked to learn that this crackpot idea actually works… sort of.

The premise is to use the space under the central fabric hammock portion of the Allay saddle for a small rubber air bladder. Under the nose of the saddle is a small valve and, using the pump supplied, you’re able to set the pressure to your desired level depending on your weight and comfort preferences.

The tip of the nose and the rear third of the saddle (where your ischial tuberosities or ‘sit bones’ rest) are relatively normal, in that they’re made of synthetic leather with a light foam padding.

As concepts go it’s a good one, and in practice it does work – to a point, although attaining the right pressure is as much about trying to blend the feel of the air sprung and foam sprung section of the saddle together as it is about specifically tuning the saddle for your underclackers. Achieving a genuinely seamless feel is tricky and some testers never felt they had it right.

At 228g you certainly don’t pay much of a weight penalty for the high-tech air bed approach, thanks mostly to a skimpy carbon fibre hull and titanium rails.

After long periods in the saddle we did find that the air bed had moved due to the pedalling action, however this was a generally infrequent trait.

We honestly can’t say the Allay Pro Racing saddle is any better than our most comfy regular ‘foam tech’ saddle. Allay claim this is a unisex model but, in our opinion it’s not.

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