Road bikes and the Tour
Jul 13, 2009 at 9:34 AM Thread Starter Post #1 of 9


500+ Head-Fier
Nov 24, 2005
Ok, I don't know anything about cycling but I'd like to get into it.

Watching the tour, it seems there are so many brands of bikes out there! Are there really no dominant bikes? (not that I encourage monopolies;I'm just surprised) Moreover, do riders chose what bikes they ride or is it based only on sponsorship? For example, Lance rides a Trek, right? But I always hear Trek bikes suck. So, what's the deal?
Jul 13, 2009 at 9:51 AM Post #2 of 9
Yea mate, alot of it will be sponsorship. They may have ridden many different bikes with different teams and sponsors, so will probably have a favorite but will stick with the team's sponsor for publicity (particularly the big names). Not doing so could lose the sponsor and valuable source of funds.

There are heaps of brands of bikes out there, and what one you like will differ greatly to what someone else does (much like headphones!!) Depending on your height,weight, build type, style you ride etc will all influence what type of bike you like. There are dominant brands in the mainstream market e.g Avanti (like SC and Bose in headphones) but in specialist cycling not as much so.

Getting into cycling may seem expensive at first depending how far you choose to advance into the sport. Whether you decide to go the whole 9 yards or just get an entry level system depends on your preference. You may decide to just ride in normal shoes rather than cleats to start to see if you like it. an aluminium road bike would be an easier start with the wallet rather than carbon etc. If you do decide to get into cycling as a serious hobby, be prepared to fork out the $$$ (well over here anyway, US might have cheaper items)

Best of luck, if you have any more questions, don't hesitate to ask!!
Jul 13, 2009 at 5:29 PM Post #3 of 9
yes there are dominant bike brands but that isn't really reflected in the tour. Good beginner brands to look out for are Giant, Specialized, Trek, blah blah blah.

For the most part riders are given bikes to ride because of sponsorship. Once in a while you'll get the rare case that they'll need a different bike so they just usually repaint the frame to match the sponsor.

Unfortunately for you the US is more expensive for cycling than the UK or Europe.

P.S. Trek bikes aren't that bad.
Jul 13, 2009 at 7:21 PM Post #4 of 9
Not all Trek bikes are bad but they make a range of bikes so you get what you say for. A $200 Trek bike (or any other company) isn't going to be the same as a custom Trek bike that costs as much as a car. If you haven't been much of a cyclist before I recommend you start with a used, cheap steel or aluminum road bike for ~$50 or less until you know what terrain you'll be riding on, how often, what kind of cycling you'll be doing, whether you even like doing a lot of cycling, etc. If you're only going to work on it a couple times a week, or if your route is full of pot holes, then its not worth getting a multi-thousand dollar bike. Also keep in mind that the nicer the bike the more likely it is to be stolen. You should also consider what kind of riding you're doing. If its more city riding then you'll want a different kind of bike than if you're going to be doing a long distance road trip. Until you figure the answers out to there questions you should just look at a cheap used road bike that will be a lot easier to ride on the road than any mountain bike, that is less likely to be stolen, and that will help you guage your actual needs and interest level in cycling. If you want you could even buy some cheap cages for the pedals as a cheap alternative to buying clipless pedals and shoes.
Jul 13, 2009 at 9:04 PM Post #7 of 9
It's about you, not the bike. There are lots of different types, buy the correct one for the riding you'll be doing. Don't spend thousands if you're only going to ride 5 miles in the first week then get bored. Post on cycling forums.
Jul 13, 2009 at 11:34 PM Post #8 of 9
its the rider, not the ride. same as in photography, give a beginner a $5k setup and the pro will probably still get better pictures with a $150 point n shoot. any brand listed here will be more than fine.
Jul 13, 2009 at 11:37 PM Post #9 of 9
Go to a bike shop and look for a used bike, especially if you don't know much about them. You'll need someone who can properly fit you. And believe me, you want the bike to fit. Way easier on your body. Frame size and seat height are especially important. I see way too many riders with seats that are way too low, which is tough on the knees. Avoid pawn shops unless you know how to judge the fit of a bike.

Pretty much all pros ride custom frames. It may say Trek or whatever, but that frame is built for them.

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