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TCR Carbon 0 too nice for a 4/5 crit bike?(13 posts)

TCR Carbon 0 too nice for a 4/5 crit bike?Hell-of-the-North
Jan 26, 2004 12:16 PM
Hi all - first-time poster. I'm logging on because I have a dilemma - albeit a nice one. I'm going to part ways with my tax return for a new bike. I currenlty have a first-generation aluminum Giant TCR with Shimano 105. I enjoy the compact frame and, at 5-10, 150, the medium fits me perfect.

I logged about 15,000 miles over the last two years and decided to get into criterim racing. I've been riding with local clubs and teams for the last few seasons, but only done a few citizen events. But I'm raring to go, and I should be Cat 4 by the end of the summer.

The logical bike for me is to stay with Giant and my LBS. I test rode the TCR Carbon 0 and love it. But some of my riding buddies think the Giant is too nice for a crit bike for Cats 4/5 and 30+. I see bikes as nice or nicer in the fields all the time, so maybe this is just a slander at what they percieve as my handling ability. I've never crashed in a race, although I've avoided a couple.

So what do you all think? For an all around bike, including races, do you think the TCR 0 is too nice for a 1st-year racer? Does anyone know about crash replacement? (Haven't investigated that yet). Opinions welcome. Thanks!!!
re: TCR Carbon 0 too nice for a 4/5 crit bike?yeah right
Jan 26, 2004 12:24 PM
only race it if you can afford to replace it.

your alu tcr is probably a great frame for crits, maybe hang a few new parts on it, and you're ready to go.

as a guy who was going through the cat 4/5 crit scene last year, trust me, you will go down.

a couple weeks ago here in norcal 1/3 field went down in an earlybird crit, a few went to the hospital, you'd hate to loose your bike from a crash when it was new.

you can get the carbon and use it for road races and training, and maybe crits when you move up to the 3s.

my $0.02
Agreed, use the old bike for Critsbimini
Jan 27, 2004 5:38 AM
Aluminium has a reputation for being stiff and stiff is what you need in crits. Crits have a lot of close contact. If you use the new bike you may turn into a whimp in fear of damaging the new bike. I have a freeway theory. A crit is like driving a car in heavy traffic, if you need to change lanes in you don't cut off the beat up taxi cab, you wait for an shiney expensive car to cut off that you know will brake.

If you get the new bike, use it for road races and training. (maybe not the road races either, I've seen a lot of pile ups in those).

It would make a great training bike, carbon is known for a smooth comfortable ride, what better for putting a lot of miles on where you can enjoy it. If the bikes have the same number of speeds, get a good stiff set of wheels on the new bike if you have an option. Then you can use these on the old bike when you race crits.
re: TCR Carbon 0 too nice for a 4/5 crit bike?asgelle
Jan 26, 2004 12:29 PM
I would recommend that you use your tax return money for things that will make you a better racer. Coaching is probably the most important thing you can buy to improve as a racer. After that, you might consider things like training camps, travelling to more races, nutritional advice, and massage.

If you really want to spend the money on equipment, you might consider a power measuring device for the bike or a computrainer.

In my opinion, your bike (since it fits well) is not holding you back or lessening your enjoyment from racing. The only equipment you could add to the bike that would really affect your racing would be a nice set of aero wheels.
Don't race what you can't afford to throw away...TFerguson
Jan 26, 2004 12:30 PM
If you can afford it, fine. If not, race the old one and keep the 0 for club rides. It will be a good reason to take that first step towards a stable of bikes like the rest of us.

yeah, what they said. Don't think that because your bikebill
Jan 26, 2004 12:49 PM
handling is fine that you've been immunized -- like as not, YOUR bike handling is not what will get you into trouble. Somebody else's problem becomes yours real quick. I once just missed a guy whose wheel folded up on him, BAM, just like that. Hard to assign blame for that one (although I suppose it could have been because the rim just shouldn't have been anymore -- it wasn't the newest wheel).
Most times, bikes and people survive crashes with some scratches. A frame like that one, though -- hoowweee. I wouldn't look forward to risking it.
Alu TCR is a great crit bikeMcAndrus
Jan 26, 2004 2:10 PM
Let me simply echo what the others have said. I have an aluminum TCR and think it's a great crit bike. There are reasons crits are full of TCRs, Cannondales, and Specialized bikes.

I have another Giant carbon (CFR) and a Colnago Dream on the way but those two will never see a criterium race. What's the expression - if you can't replace it, don't race it.

I might upgrade the components from 105 but I'd keep using the TCR to race.
That changes things...Hell-of-the-North
Jan 26, 2004 4:07 PM
All good points. If I were to pay to upgrade the old TCR - and this bike needs some work - new wheels and new STI levers at the very least - than I would probably be looking at a different type of bike to compliment it. I really do feel like it's time for a new bike with more dependable shifting and a higher quality feel for my long rides. Maybe a Ti frame that's a little heavier than the carbon but will last a bit longer (let me make my own assumptions about material life) but also that could make an appearance in some road races. Litespeed Sienna maybe, since I like my compact? Scratching my head and going to do some surfing now.
Raced 4/5's on C-40 all last season...paa
Jan 26, 2004 5:38 PM
Not before intending to build our club's team frame, a CAAD7, as my beater/race bike. Was short of the funds last year and never got around to it despite slowly gathering various "donations" from "generous" friends. The first couple races, just your average 4 turn crit, were just enough for me to sit in nervously mostly off the back. However, as the race wore on, crashing was last thing on my mind as my competitive streak took over and I would consistently finish top 10. As the SEASON wore on I entered more and more races just as my confidence grew after each race. C-40 comes away unscathed and has been retired to stud. Now a stable mate to my newly built pony. My buddies harped on it all year, you need one beater bike, and one "Sunday ride." Well, I finally bought into it. But be careful of how much you dress up your racer. If you want to upgrade to 4's, pay your dues in 5's quickly and get out! There is a big difference in cat 4 bike handling than the resident rookie 5's. Cat 4's are also smarter in a tighter pack and you won't find as much gaps between riders which would cause swerving and yo-yo-ing. This way, you worry more about your own race rather than the rest of the field. Bottom line, you must trust the other riders, no matter what bike you're on. Oh and...I'd get a beater bike.
Raced 4/5's on C-40 all last season...BaadDawg
Jan 26, 2004 6:18 PM
I have a TCR Composite 1 (last year's model) and for riding and training (other than crits) its a sweet ride. Very comfortable, absorbs everything, climbs super nice, and fast...very fast. So if you have enough $$ to fix up the TCR alu AND get a carbon Giant you'd be a happy rider.

One thing about the tcr carbon for longer rides I have found is that I ride alot farther than I used to simply because the bike is faster and doesn't beat you up. Makes you want to go further and climb higher.
Jan 27, 2004 12:37 PM
ha, a guy on our team did the same. PHAT bike with carbon cranks and ti speedplays... til one day he showed up with different cranks and old pedals. Guess he bit it in a crit, took out the pedals, cranks and 3 of his teeth...that will teach ya.

re: TCR Carbon 0 too nice for a 4/5 crit bike?astrobiker
Jan 26, 2004 6:53 PM
I have a 2 year old OCR1 with 105 on it, and just bought a new 2003 carbon TCR 0. Put 10K miles on the OCR and was very happy with it, but lusted after the carbon TCR. Really love the TCR, agree with previous posters that it is be sweet on longer, faster rides in comfort. Having said all that - I am not a racer, but do plenty of long distance club/recreation rides. One racer in the club, seeing my new TCR 0, said she didn't like it (had gotten one and was trying to sell it) because it had too much flex for sprinting. You can really see it in a trainer, but for me it goes up hills like I've never done before! FWIW, for crash and rigidity, I would work on your components and wheels. I wouldn't want to put my TCR carbon frame in a race - just asking to crash it!
Alu TCR with 105 sounds like a perfect 4/5 crit bike (nm)lampshade
Jan 27, 2004 9:11 AM