As we near the end of May here at Saddle Mountain Hostel we are glued to our TV as we watch the Giro d”Italia. After a pretty turgid first half of the race the second half has gone completely bonkers in a very entertaining way. As ever, we are supporting our favourite (non-fictional) Sicilian, Vincenzo Nibali. He is giving us a lesson in aggressive, stylish and attacking racing. As this goes to press we don’t know if he will end up the winner but it is great to watch.
Although the hostel is very busy just now I am trying, when time permits, to do some riding of my own. That means a lot of high intensity climbing up either General Wade’s road up from Fort Augustus or the hill out of Invergarry towards Bun Loyne. There is an added incentive this year as I have a new road bike.
After 14 years of using my steel Roberts as my main bike I have decided that a carbon frame might help to offset the passing years and keep me going uphill at the speed I want. As I have only started riding it since late April I’m still getting to grips with the slightly different geometry and ride characteristics but it definitely feels fast.
So what did I buy? If you know me than you know that it had to be an Italian frame with Campagnolo gearing. What I decided on was a Cinelli Superstar with all the parts chosen by me and then put together by my local bike shop. Maybe I am slightly seduced by style over substance but I have always coveted a Cinelli bike. They are not the best known, most expensive or most technologically advanced bikes (they don’t “upgrade” the frames every year) but they must be the nicest looking.
Part of the reason for this is their wonderful ”winged-C” logo. It is beautifully simple but evocative of speed and elegance. Although the design, by Italo Lupi, dates from 1979 it has a definite 1930s Art Deco feel to it and Helen and I are suckers for that period from a design point of view.
The whole bike looks lovely and I will try to do it justice when I’m out on the road by riding and dressing elegantly. Look out for us on Instagram and Facebook over the summer months – or maybe I’ll see you in person on our local roads. We always welcome fellow cyclists here at Saddle Mountain Hostel. Grinta!