It’s Not a Review: Riding the Open UPPER

We thought about reviewing the new Open UPPER, until we realized that all we needed to do was point readers back to our original UP rundown a year ago. But, along with Open’s evolved gravel bike, we’ve spent the past year getting under the skin of the genre-bending riding style. What have we learned? Lots.

A Monday in Hell: CHPT3’s ONEMORELAP, Reviewed.

Open mouth, insert money – that’s how we approached putting CHPT3’s new ONEMORELAP kit through its paces. How? First, we had Nate crash in it. Hard. Then, two days later, we had him don David Millar’s signature lycra for a windswept 8.5 hour, 140-mile, gravel-and-pavement day in the saddle. Finally, we get to find out if he’d (willingly) wear it again. Read the sordid tale of A MONDAY IN HELL.

Doubling Down on Dope Domanes

What’s better than one? Two, obviously. This is America. Meet two of a kind of what may be our favorite production bike: The Trek Domane splattered in custom Project One paint. One in crimson RSL livery, with low, long geometry designed to fly under true Flandrians, the other dressed in deep, pearlescent aqua, the quintessential all-day, everyday bike with race bike capability.

Bike of the Week: Colombian Steel

We haven’t forgotten custom steel bikes, by any stretch. This week, we’re proud to present a bike built on yet another continent, the Tinno Remoza. Handcrafted in the mountains of one of Colombia’s cycling heartlands, MedellĂ­n, the Remoza is a modern classic. Dressed in contrasting blues with a modern, sensible buildkit, we were smitten by this bike as soon as it landed stateside.

Solitude

We go through the motions, checking our phones every three minutes, every time they lord over us. Notifications. Pings. Emails. Slacks. Texts. DMs. Likes. The machines have risen in the most subtle, inventive way possible. And now, the robots are taking over our vehicle for escape, our magic carpet to Solitude: Cycling.

Presenting: The Open UPPER

Meet the Open UPPER, the UP on steroids. Or perhaps, on a diet – shedding 220g from the frame. We gave the UPPER the Above Category treatment, building the PRO gravel racer to the UCI weight limit with huge tires and SRM’s new Origin powermeter.

Showdown: Wahoo ELEMNT Bolt vs. SRM PC8

Wahoo’s brand-new, minimal ELEMNT Bolt has made a huge splash as the first true threat to Garmin’s throne as the computer of choice for most. But, how does it stack up against the head unit of the professionals – the SRM PC8? Can it measure up against the venerable German precision training tool? We dig in.

Bike of the Week: NATO Corretto

A NATO Corretto – NATO green.

The Liberation of a Cyclist: David Millar & Chpt. 3

Professional road racing is punishing, no doubt, and it’s not confined to the very act. The preparation is a daily ritual in preparing to suffer, which in and of itself is suffering. It is taxing, and it is painful. And, in a long chain of events, it lends us a character like David Millar, the now-retired-once-time-trial phenom who is the only British cyclist to wear the leader’s jersey in all three Grand Tours. His menswear line, Chpt. ///, is the deep breath many pro cyclists yearn for during the hardest points of their careers. We spent some time chatting with him about the line, and about his life after racing.

Mardennes: The Amstel Gold Homage

Fetishization of the Classics has been chic on this side of the pond for more than a few years. But, when one mentions “The Classics”, most American fans conjure images of cobbles and big, beer-fueled Belgians powering their way through the flatlands of the Low Countries. We’d like to draw attention to the oft-ignored latter half of the Spring’s one-day furies, the hilly Ardennes Classics, races that juxtapose rouleurs and Grand Tour phenoms in the tight, steep, and technical roads of the intersection of Belgium, Holland, and France. It’s terrain similar to Above Category’s home in Marin County, and in an homage, we’ve created a route and kit in ode to spring’s forgotten races.