With well over 100 years of experience making top-end bicycle saddles, Italian saddle legends Selle Italia know their onions when it comes to comfortably seating cyclists. They reckon the SLR SuperFlow 145 is their most comfortable perch to date.
It's the company’s ﬁrst high performance saddle in a width wider than 131mm (not withstanding their ill-fated Yutaak project). At 145mm wide, it follows a trend led by Specialized, whose Body Geometry saddles are available in 130, 143 and 155mm widths to best match the various ‘sit bone’ widths of the people who buy their bikes.
Extra saddle width really works and anyone who isn’t built in the pro-level racing snake mould could well beneﬁt from the added support. We’ve ridden Selle Italia seats for more than 20 years but in the past 10 or so moved away as we’ve tried and liked wider saddles. We currently favour the 143mm widths of the ‘middle’ Specialized trio, so this new Selle Italia saddle suits us widthwise.
It supports your weight well, spreading the pressure and easing us into longer rides than we could do on any of Selle Italia's current 131mm-wide models. Then there’s its new, wider, SuperFlow slot. The slotting of saddle hulls isn’t new, but it can help to make riding a less painful and numbing experience by removing the saddle from the central seating zone.
The width is 40mm where standard SLR Flow slots are 25mm. While we welcome any extra effort to cosset our whatnots the difference in feel/comfort isn’t huge. In fact, we have several non-slotted but more padded saddles that are just as comfortable in that sensitive zone. So the extra hull width works, the extra slot width is debatable.
The overall shape of the saddle is ﬂat across the top following the Selle Italia house style and will suit most, though we’d love a bit more swoop (and ﬂexibility) in the hull for those with a less ﬂexible position, and maybe even a dash more padding. As it stands the SLR SuperFlow 145 is a step in the right direction in making Selle Italia saddles more comfortable for more riders for more of the time. It's worth a try.
This article was originally published in What Mountain Bike magazine.