With the first triathlon race at the end of this week, it was really time I finished the conversion of my Tri-Ti from 'time-trial' to 'road'.
After some wrenching and part replacement, there it was, ready for its maiden voyage. I tried to reproduce as much as possible the position I have (and like) on my Pegoretti, with the addition of a clip-on aerobar. Following the idea that less is better, I avoided arm-rests and used a flat-top dropbar plus some old Cinelli cushoning elements (originally made as a complement to 'Spinaci') instead. The set-up looked ok and off I went on my usual 'Due Sommarive' 40 km test loop.
Dura Ace (7800) proved immediately up to its fame in the gear and brake department, but I was bothered by the lack of room on my fancy Optima Selle Italia saddle, I couldn't slide back enough without hitting the bottle. A road
saddle is surely better if looking for a road
Then, when I tried the aero position, I realised I was a full 2 km/h faster than in the drops, but there was no way I could stand that position for more than 10': I was too low, and my forearms were really uncomfortable on the bar. Generally speaking, I was comfortable on descents but, even in the drops, I couldn't generate my usual power output when pedaling was needed.
At the end of the ride the numbers were clear: I had been 3' slower on the titanium/lightweight/aerodynamic Guru than on my steel/heavy/not aero Pegoretti, on an average day.
Clearly, it was my fault: I'll correct the position, replace the Optima (I'll put that on a shrine I made for exotic components I don't deserve) with an SLR, add arm-rests and try again. Oh, and I'll keep the 'Ironman' bag for triathlon races: without that and without the yellow bottle behind the saddle I could even look like a normal slow cyclist, not a clown between shows