WE REVIEW THE BOARDMAN

With the launch of the 2011 range of Boardman Bikes happening on Thursday, we thought we’d give them a road test for our readers. These are the kind of bikes that pros like Lance Armstrong and Alessandro Petacchi like to be seen on!

The Boardman Road Pro Carbon, priced at £1800, will be the centre-piece bike of the Boardman Performance range, using the same frame design as the brand new Elite Seris AiR (aerodynamic racing) frame.

The Road Pro Carbon frame is markedly different from nearly all of Boardman’s previous offerings. It’s not even that close to the Elite AiR/TT/1 time trial frame which up until now has been the company’s only aero frame.

Starting at the front, the head tube is larger than you’d expect from an aero bike – the drag reduction being done through shape rather than frontal area. That means front end handling isn’t compromised too much compared to some ‘narrower’ bikes we’ve ridden.

All tubes, save for the box section chainstays, are smooth and airfoil shaped, giving the Road Pro Carbon a slightly stealthy look. The brake and gear cables fit neatly into the top and down tubes, where they’re fed through the frame until they’re needed.

Finishing kit consists of a Shimano Ultegra 6700 groupset with an FSA Energy BB30 53/39T crankset, zipp wheels with Continental Ultra Race 700x23c clincher tyres, Boardman Pro stem and handlebars and a Fi’zi:k Arione saddle. The size L (57cm) bike featured here weighed in at 7.83kg (17.26lb) without pedals.

All makes for a very impressive ride.