What joy discovery can bring!
Okay, I might not have gone to the South Pole first, or climbed Mount Kilimanjaro, but the whole of January and all of February thus far has been spent with Clément’s superb Strada LGG tyres on the Test Rig.
As we mentioned back in December, these are the winter trainer version of the Clément Strada LLG; the principal difference being fewer threads per inch (60 as opposed to 120 tpi). The dual compound rubber remains, as does a puncture protection belt and chevron-ed shoulders for grip in corners.
Much has been said already, of course, regarding the relative merits of 25mm winter tyres, on this site, the venerable RCUK Forum, and across many a crowded table in cyclist-friendly cafes. The Clément Strada, in my view, puts the case to rest brilliantly.
I’m sure my respect for the mighty Schwalbe Ultremo ZX hasn’t passed unnoticed by regular readers. Indeed, I’m happy to risk punctures by running them throughout the winter, simply for the extra grip. But the Clément Strada running in 25mm form with 80-85 psi is a fantastic beast.
Absorbing impacts with aplomb as potholes concealed by standing water throw themselves beneath my wheels, shrugging off trips through slippery mud and roadside detritus as an enthusiastic rider chops my line and I swerve to avoid a collision – just two examples of its capabilities.
More, you say? The greasy, mossy climb conquered in style, out of the saddle, pushing hard with no slips, perhaps? How about some aggressive cornering angles on the ride home from a reliability trial? None of these hazards was able to unsettle the Stradas.
If you’ve gathered that I’m impressed by Clément’s winter offering, that’s all to the good. It can be hard to get excited about tyre testing, but bitter experience has given me a strong preference for keeping the bike rubber-side down, and the Stradas have helped me do just that, showing grace under pressure and a style that appeals to me.
Now all I need to get my sticky paws on is a set of the 120tpi versions for some summer testing…what was I saying about winter tyres?