Novus Boost Evo X-Cross Superflow
A review of Selle Italia’s Novus Boost Evo X-Cross Superflow saddle.
Selle Italia say the Novus Boost Evo X-Cross Superflow is “the ideal choice for any serious cross-country mountain biker planning epic days out“. What makes it suited to off-road riding? It’s a combination of features. First off you have the Superflow cut-out. This is designed to reduce pressure on that much abused body region; the perineum. Tired of having your soft under-belly hammered by your saddle? Selle Italia’s Superflow cut-out will bring you some much needed relief on long rides.
It’s not just Superflow though, there’s some extra padding added underneath the saddle’s surface to help with the cushioning. The saddle also has a waved profile, which Selle Italia has designed for; “Static Riders or individuals who have a Posterior Pelvic Tilt.” So if you don’t move around much while riding or your pelvis is rotated backwards, this could be the one for you. The profile is designed to keep you comfortable on long rides in the saddle.
Other features include shock-absorbers that separate the saddle and the rails. These help reduce the trail chatter and thumps that are an inevitable part of riding off-road. There are also reinforcing suede panels on the side for those inevitable set-downs. Hopefully these will protect your saddle and extend its life.
Testing time for the Novus Boost Evo X-Cross Superflow saddle
I tested the Novus Boost Evo X-Cross Superflow on a Handsling CEXevo during some summer and early-season cyclo-cross races. Although the saddle is designed for XC, it’s is great for CX where you’re riding at speed on bumpy surfaces and landing hard on the saddle in running remounts.
Summer ‘cross races tend to feature fast, hard and bumpy grass courses. On these type of courses the extra padding and shock-absorbers were much appreciated; some of them can be complete bone shakers. So anything that reduces that hammering will leave you a little fresher. While ‘cross races are very short, anything that saves you energy can be a bonus and a fresher rider has more energy to press on the pedals.
The suede side panels also got a good testing in one of those dry, bumpy races when the rear wheel washed out on a corner. This led to the bike being dropped and the saddle scraping across the abrasive surface. Thankfully the reinforced side panels came to the rescue, protecting the saddle against any serious damage.
Heading into the autumn and it was time for a different sort of course. Now it was time for soft grassy sections, rutted woodland with loads of tree roots and hard frozen ground with muddy ruts that had frozen solid. Again the extra padding came to the fore, it’s an incredibly comfortable saddle that allows you to focus on racing. Better to concentrate on the fire in your legs rather than the pain in your rear-end!
The more challenging conditions and inclusion of obstacles meant more running remounts of the bike. Landing on the cushioning was a lot more comfortable than on a standard road saddle. The cushioning level was spot on – there was always the right amount of give to provide comfort without feeling overly soft and squidgy. The short nose and waved profile were perfect for putting you in the right position and keeping you there. That combination also worked well when it came to climbing, the two helping keep the power going down.
The Superflow cut out is generous without being too big, ensuring no pressure on the perineum. That can be an issue when travelling at speed over bumpy ground. My only gripe? The saddle is slightly too wide for my narrow sit bones and narrow riding style. There was a feeling that the outside of the saddle rubbed against the inside of the thighs. It wasn’t enough to impede pedalling, but you noticed that it was there. I’d like to see the same padding level and reinforced edges on a different model that has slimmer design, such as the Flight.
- Padding level
- Reinforced side panels
- Slightly waved profile for keeping you in your optimum position
- Size of cut out
- Too wide at the point when the nose meets the sit bone area, causing inner thigh rub.