There were rumors that Fabian Cancellara wasn’t happy with his bike. After moving over from SaxoBank to Leopard-Trek, Spartacus was separated from his coveted Specialized Roubaix. Trek had to change that.
The Roubaix was tailor made to Cancellara’s needs for the Classics. The frame design, geometry, and special gel inserts were all meant to improve vibration dampening and keep the body and legs fresh over the punishing cobbles. It was a recipe that Specialized hung their hat on for years, and still rolls out Roubaixs to pros and fondo-folks on an unbelievable scale.
But Cancellara needed a bike just as forgiving and just as fast. His time on the fabled Madone, made famous by Lance Armstrong, was mixed and rumors spread about the Swiss Time Machine grumbling over the lack of innovative design for the Classics. This spring, at the Strade Biache, a matte black bike with no labeling was under his legs when Cancellara stomped his way to the win. The race over the white, gravel roads was his biggest win of the season, and it wasn’t long before a stray bottle at Flanders ended his spring campaign. But the success of the Domane and the flexing design has caught on, with Trek dealers wheeling them out faster than they can get them in stock. It’s a race bike with give, and the slightly more relaxed geometry is a great fit for riders doing centuries or routes on rough terrain. The IsoSpeed flex point is a brilliant idea that actually works, too.
The $4,600 price tag will keep this out of most people’s hands, but for those with the extra cash, it’s a great option. Plus, it’s the same bike as Spartacus. That has to count for something.