Tires may not be exciting but they play an important part of your bike and the comfort of your ride. Tires are a great upgrade to your bike with a small investment. A lighter tire will accelerate faster and require less effort for you to keep moving. Compound and tread design will affect the rolling resistance. This year a professional triathlete, during an interview was reflecting on his tire set up during the 2015 Ironman in Kona and believes that it cost him an extra eight minutes during his bike from post-race research. This is about the same amount of time that he missed the podium by. He had always taking a more laid back approach to equipment selection prior to 2016, not realizing the effects it had on his performance. Over the last several years for road cycling there has been a movement towards wider tires and less pressure. In many cases a wider tire is actually more aerodynamic, when paired with the correct rim. Lower pressure allows for more comfort and is often faster due to increased traction and less loss of power. On the mountain bike side tubeless tires are here and established and moving into other segments of cycling rapidly. Puncture resistance is probably one of our number one concerns we hear in the shop. There have been a lot of advancement in engineering allowing for a design that offers low rolling resistance, lighter weight with good protection from flats.
Note – This is part of a series we will be sharing that Ernest wrote about cycling accessories and components. While they aren’t intended to be full on “Buyers Guides” We do hope they will help you with things to consider when thinking about them or to view them a little differently. Then in future post we will dive deeper into each one of these.