Brooks’ legendary traditional leather saddles, like the B17, are still potentially the most comfortable around. We say potentially because the rock hard 5mm thick hide takes a year of regular riding and oiling before it moulds to a truly custom fit that’s not matched by any ‘modern’ saddle.
The downsides, besides a masochistic first few months, are high weight (the lighter Ti version costs £99.99) and the potential to inflict eye-watering injuries if you catch yourself. Considering our Tech Director Steve Worland’s last Brooks finally died aged 33, you can’t fault long-term value though. Narrow and women’s versions of the B17 plus partially broken-in ‘aged’ specials are also available.