My bcb (best cycling buddy) Mike and I share a relative in the woodpile somewhere. He had a red and black Madone 6.5. I have a black and red Venge. We’re both color coordinated to the point of lunacy (cold weather being the exception – when it’s below freezing, you wear what keeps you warm, screw fashion).
Bottle cages match the base or secondary color of the bike, wheels and stem match the base color with secondary color accents, computer matches the secondary color. Bar tape and saddle are black… Shorts black, jersey matches the bike colors, helmet and shoes match. Shades take the tertiary color (white in my case). Pedals match either base or secondary color (secondary, red in my case). It might seem like a bunch of BS but it looks badass going down the road and I like badass.
Unlike some though, I only care about how I look. How someone else chooses to dress when they cycle is up to them – as long as they ride well when I’m on their wheel, it’s almost all good (thighty-whities sticking out of the cycling shorts is bad – always! You can be certain when you see this person, and I have, that they have no clue how to ride the bike they’re on – be extra careful around them).
Anyway, one thing that always drove Mike nuts about my bike was the fact that I had Bontrager (Trek) cages on my Specialized Venge. I have a set of Spec. Rib cages but I hate them. They grip the bottle too hard so I have to wrestle them out. Wrestling anything at 28 mph on the flat, sucks. The Bontrager cages were flat black, like my bike, and they held just enough that a full bottle won’t bounce out going over a train track but don’t have to be wrestled out at high speed… In fact, I’ve actually had a few friends comment on the brand crossing.
Now most normal people, when questioned, would simply respond to comments by saying, “Hey, they match and work better than the Spec. cages.” I am not most people, and I am absolutely not normal… So I finally bit the bullet:
…and tried two Specialized Zee Cages. As you can see, they match the secondary color, the wheels, the stem and pedals perfectly. Now, it could be fairly argued that there’s too much red there – and for most people, that would be a fair assessment, but not for me. I’m loud awesome, baby, so red was the only choice. It could also be fairly argued that I should have saved 46 grams (or 1/10th of a pound or a weight savings to cost ratio that equates to $800 a pound) and gone for the carbon fiber cages. I contemplated that momentarily, until Mrs. Bgddy flashed me that, “Try it mister, no lovin’ for you for a month” look. Yup, honey, red composite will look GREAT!
So, to the little reviewy part… First, I am a leftie and I make no apologies to witch huntin’, leftie haters, so I took the right cage and put that on the seat post and the left cage went on the down tube, all set up for a leftie. As for function, they’re fantastic. They hold a little bit better than the Bontrager cages but are exceptionally easy to retrieve a bottle from at speed. I only wish I’d have gone this route to begin with…
If you’re wondering what fate befell my Trek cages, I donated them to a friend who just bought a super-bright red (black secondary color, of course) Trek Emonda SL6 – Ultrgra. He will be poor for a while so they went to a good cause.