Wednesday, April 14, 2010

Kestrel Review con't

So, today was day 3 on the new bike. I'm really enjoying the new ride. However, there's a problem with the headset coming loose while I'm riding, so I had to stop twice to mess with it. Did some climbing at Auloa and Olomana with it, and it really responds well. Handles great on the turns on the descents, too. Pretty good for a TT bike. I can actually reach the barend shifters on this bike, so I can shift while in the aero position. Cool!

Still not sure about the resistance factor, though. It still seems a bit resistant when not going full power. Weird. Wonder if the loose headset contributes to that? It feels a bit like the tail wagging the dog. But not as much today.

Avg power is slowly rising for each I'm into the low 100's...104, 108, etc with Norm power in the 120-140 range. Not bad for coming back....yay!

Saturday, April 10, 2010

Review of the Kestrel AirFoil Pro SL

Finally got out on the new steed today. A gorgeous 2009 AirFoil Pro made by Kestrel. I'll get some pics up shortly.

Having not ridden the Cervelo P2 for sometime, it's hard to do a side-by-side comparison. But I'll try.

First of all, the Kestrel fits like a glove. I can get super low in the front, and even have some seat post coming out of the frame, unlike the P2 where I had to shove that puppy into the seat tube as far as it would go! The top tube is a bit shorter on the Kestrel, which suits me well.

My set up is as follows:
47cm Kestrel AirFoil Pro SL frame
Stock Kestrel Fork
Oval Concepts Carbon cowhorns, with OC aluminum aerobars.
Oval Concepts adjustable mount Stem, 110

Drive Train
Specialties TA Carmina Crank Arms 170
Specialties TA Carmina Chain Rings, 39/53
Campy 10sp Chain
DuraAce Derailleurs, front and rear
DuraAce friction bar end shifters
DuraAce brakes
Campy 10sp, 11-25 cassette

Wheel Set today
Rear: Power Tap SL+ Nimble Spider
Front: Velocity Deep V

These all came off the Cervelo.

What I noticed immediately with the Kestrel, was its responsiveness. It feels as though it is an extension of me...whatever I do, it does. We move together as a single entity.

The compromise of that, is that if the legs lose momentum, so does the bike. It's as though any pedaling inefficiencies I have are exacerbated on this bike. By the same token, when my pedaling is super efficient, the bike moves like no other. It doesn't like to actually slows down very quickly when I stop pedaling. The Cervelo, always just wanted to keep moving forward. I don't know how else to explain it. OR...WHAT could explain that strange sensation.

The ride is much smoother than the P2C, that's for sure. And the fit is so good, it's almost comfortable!

Interestingly enough, I rode this same route two days ago on the Merlin road bike, when I did 3x 10 minutes at Threshold. I only did a few efforts out there today...mainly 1 minute pedal technique drills, in the aero position. Just as windy both days...and I did the exact same speed with a bit less wattage today. Wonder what it would have been if I had been on the P2c??

Well, that's all the review news I have today. I plan to ride a bit tomorrow, a little shorter perhaps, but seeing how I can keep the avg speed up.