The fastest road bike in the world

As a person who uses English as a secondary language, I perceive the words a little bit differently. For me its not about pure semantics but “feel” of the word. Yes, Trek & Giant from meaning standpoint are strange names,s and you can say the same about Apple. But naming is not only about meaning but also how the name “feels” and rolls off the tongue. Simplon is, for me, just a not-pleasant word, and sounds like some offensive term for someone with some kind of mental disorder - it’s only emotional response, there is no logic in it. Half of the world uses the word Schmetterling to show the brutality of the German language (personally I like it) - and this is a similar example when you remove semantics and leave just a word. The same I could say about cars named Geely - I just don’t like the word itself.

I have nothing against the brand itself or the bike, just saying the name would be a very big con - it’s the same if the bike has a particular colour you do not like, and it’s an important part of the buying decision.



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Buy what you like the look and fit of. Stop reading marketing lies and “independent tests”
It’s all bs and/or even if it makes 0.5% difference over another brand, that difference doesn’t apply to 99.99999% of us.

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The bike and testing results have been around for a couple of years now, so I don’t really have much to comment.
Very likely to be a super aerodynamic road bike, but that’s all I can comment. Don’t know about any other ride characteristic.
Also, I hope everyone buying a bike like this doesn’t ride around in otherwise slow gear :wink:.
I have seen one too many people with super high end aero bikes, wearing obviously slow kit to races, with a greasy chain, slow tires, and wide a** handlebars…
Just saying that this is gonna be the first point of optimization, then turn to the bike :+1:t2:

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To a degree, yes. But optimizing a shape in and for the wind tunnel (where the air has laminar = smooth flow) and real-life outdoor riding conditions where the air has turbulent flow are very different things.

If you have a look at the data, then you see the difference between the Simplon and the runner-up is just 2 W or 1 %, and the two next-best bikes are 3 W slower (1.5 %). The top-8 are all within 5 W (i. e. 2.5 %). I am not sure what systematic and statistical errors are as they haven’t been published in the Excel sheet, but those numbers could even be within the margin of error. (Their notation suggests that the last significant digit is a single Watt at least.)

So yes, you have correlation, but the differences are so small that the order may change significantly when you consider non-laminar flow. If you go to more extreme comparisons (e. g. the TCR Advanced 1 tied for last place vs. one of the top-8 bikes), then I think your correlation does very likely carry over to the real world.

Hambini described the difference when describing his wheel test protocol, and most of the points apply also to testing the aerodynamics of frames.

PS Perhaps I am nitpicky, but when I do put my scientist hat on, it’s an occupational hazard. Not an aerodynamicist, though.

The reason that wind tunnel and field testing are highly correlated (see Validation of a Mathematical Model for Road Cycling Power - PubMed) is that the difference between turbulent and laminar flow is insignificant in this context. As but one example, there is no difference in drag between pedaling and not pedaling (averaged over leg positions), even though pedaling introduces turbulence.

As for Hambini, he’s a joke.


Agree with this. Just based on the name it’s at a disadvantage. Ribble is the same. On the other hand, a company like Vitus, which I literally know nothing about, gives me a better feeling and I’d probably be more likely to buy them unknown. Welcome to the illogical world of branding and marketing. It is what it is.


I mentioned some aero bikes are converging on the same design in the first post reply because they’re designed for the same world. There must be a specific, shared goal they all have for them to come up with very similar designs.

Others seem to balance these yaw goals with other attributes that can’t be successfully done with carbon layup only, so they need to deviate from this new shared shape.

Someone rolled up on an Elves bike yesterday and it looks very similar, too. Another one added to the list.

However, there’s no way it rides as comfortably and confidently as a SystemSix. He even said himself it was a heavy piece of crap, but fast in a straight flat line.

Simplon may also be following similar aerodynamic formulas, but they appear to be a legit, small company with scruples. Their bike appears to be very well finished and thought out.

However, maybe I missed it, but I don’t see “tested with bottles” on these bikes like other makers.

Initial impressions matter, all of us are consumers. But imagine if a world tour team was riding winning on Simplon bikes, or Ribble bikes. All of sudden the name increases its stock and you’d start to associate it with performance and less from its taste in name.


Tons of options - and opinions - when one actually should have pounds of them…

Edit: And the difference in aero drag between 10 first bikes is like difference between very well tunnel optimized and super well tunnel optimized athlete position. Or two different generic drink bottles in a same bottle cage. It’s a thing everyone’s better consider when choosing position in a pack when sidewind or attacking. :rofl:

Not necessarily….the history of the World Tour is awash with bike brands that sponsored teams and never caught on.

ETA….future case in point. This will likely be one of the only times you see Van Rysel mentioned on this board.

Huffy bikes anyone? :face_with_peeking_eye:

I’m kinda curious to see what prices are like when it hits the US market. I don’t particularly love murdered-out black paint schemes, but I think the Van Rysel RCR is a nice looking bike. Looks a bit like a Factor Ostro or Tarmac SL7

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It’s the opposite rationale that’s true. That difference applies to all of us. And it makes the most difference the slower you are.

As for the rest, if independent tests shouldn’t be trusted, who do you trust?

It doesn’t because

  • 99% of people buying it for performance don’t race
  • The ones who do race don’t race at a level where the seconds make a difference
  • There’s no test independent or otherwise that can test accurately, that represents a person riding the gear that is being tested. Someone can test frame A vs B in a wind tunnel and let’s say A is faster in the wind tunnel.
  • B can be faster in the real world

  • B can be faster with a different person’s body type

  • B can be faster with the customer’s wheels, clothing, body position, helmet.

There was literally an example of some national pro or elite type athlete recently who bought a brand new bike got it set up perfectly and it ended up being slower than his super old bike he replaced.

Anyway. If you buy in that marketing, go ahead. I value loving a bike purely cause of aesthetics therefore riding it every day and getting faster over some questionable test that I haven’t participated in with my own body and gear. you can weigh something or do rolling / drive train efficiency tests and that will more or less be the same whoever rides it. But aero doesn’t work in isolation. It can change a lot depending on who rides it.


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I watch too many cycling related videos and read too many articles to remember where it was, unfortunately.

But you can pretend that anecdotal example doesn’t exist and rest still holds true.

He’s a lot, but the things he says have been on the minds of a lot of engineers for a very long time. Hardly a joke.

Do you disagree that there’s a lot of BS “engineering” in the world of cycling products?

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Feel free to support that with any evidence / data.

Some may be true but you have made several sweeping claims that are questionable, at best.


I find Hambini’s style and stick grating and annoying. But he does know his stuff when it comes to engineering and aerodynamics. The larger point about being careful when extrapolating numbers from the wind tunnel to real life riding conditions holds.