Michael Hanslip Coaching

If you want to go faster, you have to pedal harder

Madone SLR

On the eve of the release of the newest Madone for the '22 Tour, I thought I'd put up a short review of what is my best bike ever - Madone SLR Disc.
Having been through many generations of design, the recent few have been full-on aero race bikes. This sacrifices some weight for being slick in the air. To maximise this, they use truncated air foils. Not only does this make them UCI legal, but road bike practical. The flat back of the downtube is convenient for a bottle cage, for example.
Disc brakes are something I never thought I wanted on a road bike. Sure, I've used them for years on the MTB, but rim brakes work fine on the road. And then I rode them!
As an added bonus, carbon rims don't need to be brake friendly. This makes the rim's life easier, lighter and more aero.
Mine is the first Madone with IsoSpeed. A means of pivoting the seatpost on the frame so it can move slightly in response to bumps - it takes the sting out of potholes. On the Madone it is adjustable. I have never tinkered with mine because I like how it came and thought it aligned well with the response of the non-adjustable one on the Checkpoint. So no reason to mess with it.
After 30 years of carbon frames, Trek has enough experience to make the Madone really stiff while hitting all their other targets. Never does the chain rub on the front derailleur. NEVER! The bike feels super solid.
So: the bike is aero, the brakes are good, the ride is good and it is sufficiently stiff for a big guy like me. These traits all come together most often when I hit a decent hill at speed and realise I am pushing it up the slope at crazy speeds. This much power should flex the frame. It should not go quite this fast. And such a deep-tubed frame should have a rougher ride.
Couple that with my Project One pick of metallic Emerald paint and the superb Record drivetrain and I've got a fantastic bicycle. One I love to ride. My best one ever.