Like most people, over the years I have bought many different cycling magazines to while away the hours on train journeys or waiting in airports. I don’t really follow racing, so many magazines don’t hold much interest for me, the same with mountain bike magazines. Despite being a triathlete, triathlon magazines very rarely get looked at. By and large I found them a bit dull and repetitive. If you’re new to triathlons then buy a magazine for a year, and then you’re done, as the same articles will appear regular as clockwork the following year.
Cycling Plus, on the other hand, is a magazine that I have a subscription for, as generally it has a few good articles each month. This month was their ‘Bike of the year 2017’ edition, with 25 bikes tested ranging in price from £2-2,500. All of the big names were represented. In fact, only the big names were represented. The top five were from Specialized, Trek, Boardman, Focus and Giant. I’m sure that if I was to ride any of these bikes I would be very impressed. (I’m often easily impressed). The cynic in me would suggest that these bikes made it to the final because they all spend large amounts of money on advertising in Cycling Plus, although only Specialized and Focus advertised this month.
Smaller brands are generally only featured if they are offering something different, for example, the Evanson on page 32, or if it’s an £8,000 superbike. I was then going to write about a smaller brand from Cheshire and how they offer great value and that the bikes they built are too good to be reviewed alongside the big name brands. I then Googled the brand and found page after page of negative reviews, all from a couple of years ago so the brand might have changed, but I struggled to find even a single positive review, except from their own Facebook page. I was genuinely thinking of buying on bike from this smaller company in the future, but now I’m not so sure.
Finally, in defense of Cycling Plus, they do have a certain obligation to review bikes that people might be able to find online or on the high street, and smaller brands can have a longer waiting period.
This isn’t the first time that I’ve sat down to blog about something, and the end result is not what I was hoping for, and therefore seems to lack a certain hook. Nevermind, my next blog might be better.