Sunday, June 30, 2013

Test Ride - Centurion Equipe

I took the Centurion "Cinelli" Equipe out for a 15-miler this morning around the neighborhood. While there were no hills, cobblestones, switchbacks, or other fun obstacles to provide a "proper" test ride evaluation, there were squirrels to dodge and I came close to hitting a skunk, so perhaps this counts toward the bike's adequate handling characteristics. 

The first couple miles were somewhat uncomfortable, but this was no fault of the bike. Had to adjust the seat back an inch and tilt it up a bit. I prefer to have the nose of my saddles a couple of degrees above horizontal. I truly distaste leaning into the bars to keep myself "back" on my saddles. If you find yourself with numb palms or fingers after a ride, make sure your not leaning into the bars too much. You should feel neutral on your bike - well-balanced and not pitched forward, fighting to keep yourself from sliding off the front or the back of your saddle. 

Enough for the riding lessons. Once I adjusted the seat, the Centurion disappeared beneath me. It has very neutral handling, neither twitchy or laid-back, and, although not the lightest bike in the stable (22 pounds 1oz without bottle cages), accelerates well and is stiff while sprinting. 

Perhaps the best compliment I can give this bike is that it doesn't draw attention to itself in any way. The Campagnolo Nuovo Record rear derailleur shifts effortlessly through the gears, and the stability and easy handling allow me to focus on everything except the bike - like the squirrels and other, less pleasant early-morning critters.

I was thinking of selling this bike, but, after this morning's ride, I've decided it's a keeper. This is a decision I can live with, and one that should bring many more easy miles in the years to come.

More photos of the Centurion Equipe can be found HERE

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