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Fulcrum Speed 25 wheelset, Sportful BodyFit Pro Jersey, Chrome Helix handlebar bag and Two Wheels Good

Plus the latest cycling news and reviews

First Look Friday 18 Nov.

This week has seen a spread of bike launches across an array of disciplines and categories.


Monday witnessed Marin’s release of a new Rift Zone with revised geometry and kinematics. Alex Evans reviewed the Rift Zone 29 XR, praising the trail bike’s fun and engaging ride and reasonable price.

On Tuesday, Moots launched the Vamoots CRD. The titanium road bike can fit up to 32x700mm tyres and has full integration, which is a first for the brand from Steamboat Springs, Colorado.

Tacx announced the Neo Bike Plus, an updated version of the Neo Smart Bike. The indoor bike has new ergonomics and a price increase of over 50 per cent here in the UK.

Two electric bikes were launched in the form of the Orbea Wild eMTB and BMC Roadmachine 01 AMP X, the Swiss brand’s first electric all-road bike – and maybe the first bike to be marketed as an ‘electric all-road bike’, full stop.

Yeti continued its sweep of bike updates with the SB120 and SB140 trail bikes, following the launch of the SB160 last week.

Away from bike launches, we brought you our pick of the best helmet lights and tips for mountain biking at night.

If you’re unsure about what lights you should or shouldn’t be using at night, we published our guide to UK bike light laws.

We also updated our list of the best winter road bike tyres and best gravel tyres, with some of the latest releases in the two categories of tyres.

As ever, we brought you a whole host of reviews, including the Prime Primavera 32 wheelset and Shimano XT M8120 brakes.

One standout review was the Canyon Aeroad CF SLX 7 Disc eTap. The bike earned a rare five stars and senior technical editor Warren Rossiter says it may have convinced him to get an aero road bike.

Fulcrum Speed 25 wheelset

The Fulcrum Speed 25 wheelset weighs 1,299g.
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The Fulcrum Speed 25 wheelset is intended to maximise climbing speed by keeping the overall weight low.

These carbon road bike wheels weigh in at 1,299g on the BikeRadar scales.

Fulcrum says it has integrated much of its top technology to achieve this weight, notably its Direct Inmold Matt Finish (DIMF) process. DIMF removes the need for protective treatments, which could add extra bulk and produce a ‘raw’ look in the process.

The DIMF process creates a ‘raw’ look.
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Naturally, for a climbing wheel, the Fulcrum Speed 25 has a shallow rim profile. But, maybe confusingly considering the wheelset’s name, the rim depth is 26mm.

The rear wheel has an asymmetric rim profile said to optimise lateral stiffness and reactivity.

The wheelset has Fulcrum’s 2-Way Fit hooked-rim design.
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The front wheel has a symmetrical design for a small aerodynamic advantage, according to the brand.

With a 21mm internal rim width, Fulcrum says this wheelset is optimised for 28mm tyres but can fit tyres up to 35mm wide.

The wheelset has Fulcrum’s 2-Way Fit hooked-rim design, so you can run tubed or tubeless road tyres.

The wheelset has ceramic bearings.
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The hubs use ceramic bearings, which Fulcrum claims reduce rolling resistance by 50 per cent compared to steel bearings.

The wheelset is available with different freehub standards, including Campagnolo’s N3W design.

  • £1,999.99 / $2,586 / €2,186

Sportful BodyFit Pro Jersey

The Sportful BodyFit Pro Jersey is a thermal top for winter.
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Sportful describes its BodyFit Pro Jersey as a “new idea for a thermal jersey”.

The long-sleeve cycling jersey has a brushed fabric on the inside, which is said to help keep you warm and comfortable.

The jersey sleeves have raw cut ends.
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The front and back of the jersey are 100 per cent polyester, while other sections are a polyester and elastane mix.

The fit of the jersey is close to the body, which helps make it ‘pro-level’ in Sportful’s eyes, but should also help with holding heat in and wicking.

The shoulders have a polyester and elastane mix to help with the jersey’s fit.
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The jersey has a number of small details. The jersey sleeves have raw cut endings, it closes with a YKK zip and there is gripper elastic at the bottom of the jersey in the back. There are also some reflective details.

Sportful says this jersey is best suited to riding in chilly but sunny and still weather. So, it would probably be worth pairing it with a gilet for windy conditions.

  • £125 / $170 / €109.90

Chrome Helix handlebar bag

The Chrome Helix handlebar bag in the ‘fog’ colour.
Stan Portus / Our Media

Chrome Industries has a reputation for producing durable bags, and I can attest to having used my Chrome Mini Metro bag for over a decade.

With the Helix, the American brand doesn’t shy away from this status, describing it as “a tough little bag built for the essentials”.

The bag closes with a PU-coated zipper.
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The bag has a tarp exterior and liner for durability, and it closes with a PU-coated zipper.

The Helix can be fitted to your handlebar via two loops and has a head-tube stabiliser strap to stop it from moving around.

The Chrome logo is reflective and the bag attaches to your handlebar via Velcro straps.
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It comes with an additional strap, which means you can use it as a shoulder bag or hip pack.

Chrome says the Helix has a volume of three litres, and inside there are two internal pockets.

The Helix is backed by Chrome’s lifetime warranty – we’ll have to see if it lasts as long as my other Chrome bag.

  • £58 / $65 / AU$130 / €63

Two Wheels Good by Jody Rosen

The book is a history of the bicycle from its infancy to its status as a green-machine today.
Stan Portus / Our Media

Two Wheels Good takes a panoramic look at the history of the bicycle, from its beginnings as a Victorian invention to its modern-day reputation as a sustainable mode of transport.

Author Jody Rosen, a contributor to The New York Times Magazine and The New Yorker, combines history, reportage, travelogue and memoir to explore the bicycle.

He looks at feminist rebels who used bicycles to ram into barricades in the 1990s, cycle rickshaw drivers and an astronaut who rode a bicycle in the International Space Station, to name three examples.

The cycling book is described as a ‘love letter’ to bicycles, but Rosen doesn’t look at bikes through rose-tinted glasses. He also explores the bicycle’s ties to colonialism and its role in the gentrification of cities.

  • £25 / $28 / €28