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10 reasons to love this bike: Ridley Fenix SL 25

BikesEtc
7 Sep 2016

A hardcore endurance bike, used by the pros on Belgium's toughest roads.

1. It’s race proven

The Fenix SL is the top-end endurance model from Belgian bike builders Ridley. It made its debut at the 2015 spring Classics, notably being ridden by Lotto-Soudal stars. In fact, Lotto’s Andre Greipel was so inspired by the bike’s comfort-giving qualities that he went on attack after attack on the bone-jarring cobbled roads of Paris-Roubaix and leg-sapping bergs of the Tour of Flanders.

2. It takes huge tyres

While the bike comes with 25mm tyres as standard, generous frame clearances mean it can take tyres up to 28C, which should further enhance comfort to give a smooth, comfortable ride on all but the very worst Belgian farm tracks.

3. It’s responsive

With all the focus on comfort, don’t be fooled into expecting a soft ride – this is a bike designed for racing, and the frame is stiff enough in all the right places to provide a firm connection with the road. It may not be as unforgiving as Ridley’s aero bike, the Noah, or as light as its climber’s bike, the Helium, but if you want to ride fast and keep going all day, this is the bike for you.

4. It’s aero

Taking note of its aero sibling, the Fenix uses some features that can be found on the Noah. In particular, the frame and fork integration which enables a more aero turning system. We all love some free speed. 

5. It looks great

This fresh and bright colourway is a perfect accompaniment for summer, and looks dazzling when the sunshine lights it up. If you’re not a fan, however, don’t fret as the folks at Ridley can custom paint it to match just about any bit of kit you own. 

6. It’s comfortable

The cobbles of northern France and Belgium are formidable foes for even the toughest derriere, but thanks to some nifty frame design features –  check out that  curved top tube, hexagonal down tube and those flattened seatstays – Ridley has made a bike that’s as comfortable as it is quick. 

7. You’re in safe hands

Belgium has won 18 Tour de France titles, is the birthplace of the great Eddy Merckx and is an all-round cycling-mad nation, so it’s safe to say Ridley has  some serious pedigee when it comes to building a brilliant bike.  

8. It’s stable

With a slightly longer wheelbase than its aero contemporary, this enduro-racer handles well over long  miles and is smooth going and responsive through the corners. If you want a bike that won’t jitter, then this is one beauty that won’t disappoint. 

9. There’s one to suit everyone

The Fenix SL range uses the same frame as the bikes ridden by Greipel and co, made of 30-ton and 24-ton high-modulus carbon throughout. Beyond that, the eight-bike range comes in a choice of different specs to suit every budget, from the Team model with Campag Chorus components down to the entry-level SL 50 with Shimano’s 105 groupset.

10. It’s a great price

This mid-range model equipped with the excellent mechanical Ultegra groupset comes in for £1,999.99 – pretty good for essentially the same bike ridden by the pros. With technology developed to cope with the harshest conditions of Belgium’s cobbles and toughest  bergs, it’ll breeze up and down Britain’s B-roads and hills.

£2,500

Spec

Frame Fenix SL 30T-24T HM unidirectional carbon frame and fork
Groupset Shimano Ultegra
Brakes Shimano Ultegra
Chainset Shimano Ultegra 52/36
Cassette Shimano Ultegra 11-28
Bars 4ZA Cirrus
Stem 4ZA Cirrus 100
Seatpost 4ZA Cirrus Alloy
Wheels 4ZA RC31
Saddle 4ZA Cirrus Pro
Weight 8.43kg
Contact ridley-bikes.com

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