Specialized Tarmac SL3

Having always taken the less expensive option when it comes to purchasing a new bike, I have always plugged the term, "you can't buy speed", and continued to grind away blaming body weight as a limiting factor.

However, that all changed when the boys from Specialized generously let me look after the new S-Works Tarmac SL3 for the next few months. The bike arrived with Zipp 202's and despite weighing only 1095 grams, the 202 is a versatile racing wheel set that just happens to climb like a mountain goat – regardless of rider weight.P5230002v1low

The SL3 is refreshingly responsive when applying power either in or out of the saddle. The stiffness around the bottom bracket ensures that the bike moves forward with less lateral flexion. It is a rigid ride, and with no Zerts to absorb any shock, you can literally feel each pebble – generally through the sitting bones. Moving from Shimano to SRAM took about 30 seconds to get used to, however, it feels smooth and natural.

To sum up then. Speed can be bought, and in this instance, borrowed. Whichever way you look at it, it is an awesome piece of equipment that demands a rider "puts in" every time they saddle up.

Thanks to Matt and the guys at Specialized.

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