Trek Domane Review
But what’s it like to ride? A couple of days prior to the Ronde, representatives of the world’s cycling press got to ride the bike over three of the most feared sections of kasseien in the race: the Paterberg, the Oude Kwaremont and the Koppenberg.
Perhaps the first riding impression is of the immense stiffness of the bottom bracket and chainstay assembly, immediately followed by impressively stable handling. The former is exactly as
claimed by Trek; having de-coupled the seat mast from the rest of the frame, the latter can be made stiffer than the Madone without sacrificing comfort. The latter is, well, stable. It means the bike needs a firm hand if it is to steer tightly but ensures that over rougher surfaces it tracks true and resists being thrown off line.
Only after a few kilometres does the movement of the saddle become noticeable. It does exactly that, moving
to a tiny extent even on a smooth road in much the same way as a long, flexible seatpost, but without any lateral motion. To check, I held my finger against the juncture of the IsoSpeed system and was able to discern relative movement beween post and stays. The degree of motion is not enough to intrude perceptibly while riding on smooth tarmac, but I did feel better-connected with the Domane on the second day, perhaps because I had become accustomed to the saddle’s action.
On to the cobbles of the Oude Kwaremont; they come in the shape of a climb that steepens to 20percent in the middle before levelling off for perhaps 800m. On the steep section, speed was low and the primary sensation one of hitting big bumps. Once onto the false flat and riding significantly faster, the bike felt a lot smoother. It didn’t quell
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