Verenti Rhigos.03 First Look

The Rhigos.03 is the entry level model of the three Rhigos bikes in online retailer’s new Verenti road bike range. Sportive specific is an apt term for the geometry seen on all of them.

In practice, this means that Verenti bikes have a long head tube for their notional size, placing the handlebars higher than might be the norm for competition even when as low as they can go. How high? In the case of the size L on test, a whole 30mm higher than the writer’s preferred setting, which is a significant difference and one that may well rule these machines out for anyone wanting a road bike for proper racing.

For many potential and existing sportive riders, however, those high handlebars and the associated upright riding position will be a very attractive proposition. That said, there’s more to this machine than a relaxed, undemanding cockpit arrangement, as a quick run-over as it comes from the box will reveal.

The frame tubes and fork are finished in slightly unfashionable 3K carbon twill with black-painted lugs, head tube and bottom bracket. A close inspection is needed to reveal that these parts are, in fact, also carbon-fibre, for the only visual evidence that they are not cast aluminium is a subtle label on the top tube stating that these are Ultra Contact Bonding Verenti Carbon Lugs. Their sturdy, immaculately-smooth finish sure is reminiscent of cast aluminium, especially with the Verenti badge set into the side of the head tube one-piece moulding, but the weight of the bike says otherwise.

Detailing is impressive; not only is the trident logo set into the head tube, but it appears on the back of the rear dropouts, on the underside of the down tube lug extension and on the front of the seat tube cluster. The CNC-machined replaceable derailleur hanger also has a machined logo…

One interesting feature is the extended tip to the front ear of each fork dropout. This, it transpires, is designed to be rested against the ground when the front wheel is removed for, say, a puncture repair. The fork has a 1.5″ lower bearing with suitably oversized carbon steerer and the machine is nicely finished off with a sleek trident head badge.

Finishing kit is wiggle’s own ME componentry; ME3 in the case of the bars, stem, seatpost and saddle and plain old ME for the bar tape, bar ends and headset spacers.

SRAM Rival shifters and mechs with ME2 calipers and a SRAM Elita compact chainset equip a machine that rolls on good-looking 2010 Mavic Aksium wheels and Vittoria Diamante Pro rubber. This is a fine-looking, beautifully-finished machine that looks more than capable of tackling some serious mileages, just as long as the rider does not want to get too aero…. We shall be giving it something to do.


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