"Bianchi Day Rider"
Iíd like to give my impressions of my ďDay Rider.Ē When I started riding 3 months ago, I had an old and venerable Trek 820 mountain bike. I really liked it, but given that I was riding a lot of miles on paved paths and roads, I decided I needed something a little more fit for the type of riding I was doing. So, the 820 was given to my son and I decided to get a Trek FX 7.3. I enjoyed the heck out of the FX, but after my first metric century on it, I decided I needed a road bike.
About that time, I was in a bike shop and noticed the colour ďCeleste.Ē It was a used 2006 Bianchi Eros. Iíve always liked light green, and that was the colour that turned my eye. The fact that I spend a lot of time in Greece, and "Eros" is the Greek god of passion didn't hurt my attraction to the bike. I gave it a try and I thought the ride qualities of the steel frame were fantastic compared to the aluminum of the Trek FX. So I bought it for about Ĺ the price of a new bike.
My goal was to have a comfortable bike that I could ride all day and carry enough gear to get me through the day, without support, when needed. The bike is stock except for a shorter, higher stem, a kick stand and the Bontrager Interchange rack on the back. I went with the shorter higher stem because I thought it would create a more comfortable ride. I was wrong! Although the hoods are just right, I am a bit cramped at the top position. I can move the hoods, but I canít move the top position without changing the stem. Iíve ordered a new stem that will stretch me out a bit, will probably be almost as high and, I think, will be more comfortable on the long rides.
The Eros has a Campagnolo Mirage group for the drive train and the brakes. I donít know where that group fits in the overall scheme of things, but I can tell you it beats the Shimano Deore thatís on my Trek FX. Itís very smooth, in comparison, and is very quiet and has operated flawlessly. I, especially, like the brakes as they are quiet, smooth and grip great. It came with a Mavic wheel set and Vittoria tires. The tires were a bit worn, so, after the first flat, I bought new tires. The bike is smooth down the road.
The Bianchi fits everything I need on a bike. Itís quite a bit faster than the FX and I can ride it all day long. With the Bontrager rack and trunk bag, I can fit rain gear, a sweater, a multi tool, a flat tire kit and enough food to get me through the day if Iím not near a restaurant. I love the bike.
My wife is both very athletic and very competitive. She was a super athlete in her younger days and canít stand not beating me at most things we do. She couldnít keep up with me when I was riding my Bianchi and she was on her mountain bike. She didnít want anything to do with a road bike, until she realized she couldnít keep up with me. Then, she started worrying about, just maybe, she was getting old and wouldnít be able to do the things she loves to do. Not to worry!! Last weekend, I switched bikes with her, dropped the seat on my Bianchi and took off down the bike path. I lost sight of her. All of a sudden, she was all smiles and she admitted her fears of becoming old. Sheís now after a new bike, Iíll have to get used to her beating me again. Ainít it great!!
So, all in all, biking has made an amazing difference in my quality of life. Iíve lost 27 lbs., I fit into clothes I havenít worn in years and I feel very fit. My wife is getting into biking now, and I can see the both of us spending a lot of time together riding the paths and roads of Northern Michigan.