First, I'll admit that I don't want these wheels to be exclusively for racing, but I will not be doing trainer workouts or all the bad weather and off season riding necessarily. However, I do need something that could hold up to a fair amount of "regular" use. I am a weak climber, so I avoid mountains, hill climb races, etc. I don't think a "climbing" wheelset is going to do me any good, either, though shedding some weight couldn't hurt, right? My strength is quick acceleration, and I really hope to keep improving in this area. I find that I struggle the most with wind and maintaining a quick pace in moderately windy, flat conditions. So, I want something more aerodynamic and easier to maintain at fast cruising speeds as my top priority. A wheel I could spin up quickly out of corners and in sprints would be at the 2nd level of importance. I don't want to hurt my climbing, but as I said, I'm going to have to work on my legs and not my wheels to really improve there. Although I'd use these primarily for racing and the hammerfest group rides, I would like something I could ride by myself out in the boonies. So, I prefer clinchers for flat-fixing purposes. I hear tubulars require a lot of strength plus carrying the extra tire...yada yada.
My stock wheels are Ultegra level Shimano (WH-R600). They SUCK, but are bomb-proof.
I got a decent chunk of change as a holiday present, but I keep going back and forth on what to get. My budget is $2100 or less.
I'm thinking about:
Zipp 303/404 combo or Zipp 404 all around
Pros: 5 year crash replacement (cost?), hotness
Cons: durable enough? price.
Mavic Cosmic Carbone SL
Pros: 2 year free replacement, with nominal up front cost. durable? price.
Cons: heavier, uglier.
Am I incorrect in any of my pros or cons (or can you answer where there are question marks)?
Thoughts on either wheelset for my purposes?
Any additional brands/models that might work for me? (please keep these limited to absolute favorite wheels at this price point, because I'm already overwhelmed ).
Thanks!! Race season starts soon!