Specialized Toupe Expert Gel - in brief £100

Well-thought out seat

BikeRadar score 4/5

The flat profile of the Toupe could be uncomfortable with the wrong construction. Luckily Specialized has got this saddle very, very right, by using a highly flexible hull and full channel and cutout combination.

Build is top notch – with a fully bonded-in top section that's free of creases and staples, the Expert oozes quality. Despite minimal padding on the top, none of our testers found the Toupe uncomfortable. We particularly liked the slight downward turn on the very front of the nose, which keeps things nice and comfy when shifting weight forward on steep climbs.

The only downside is that the smooth surface covering can be a little slippery when wet, particularly with slicker Lycra shorts.

Overall though, for a racing perch the Toupé is a great alternative to the long Arione-style saddles around.

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

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