Join Date: Dec 2011
Location: Cape Cod, Massachusetts
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Well, the Raleigh is a cyclocross bike, which in and of itself isn't a bad thing, especially at your size. However, personally, I'd have little use for a 46t big ring, for road riding. YMMV.
My pick out of the three would be the GTR 3 with the Tiagra group. Not that I think that Microshift is all that bad, but for the relatively small difference in price, I'd go with 10 speed Tiagra. The GTR 3, 4, and 5 are all built on the same frame, and come with the same crappy Jalco wheels, and same Vittoria tires. The only difference is the drive train. But any sub-$1000 bike is going to have wheels that are mediocre, at best. Tektro brakes are also pretty standard on entry level bikes.
If I were you, I'd go to GT's website and do a dealer search for one in your area. There's no substitute for someone who knows what they're doing helping you find the correct frame size doing a basic fit. Depending on what 2013 models he still has on hand, and what's left at GT's distributor, you might match or beat REI's price there. And almost every LBS will do the first "tune up" or adjustment for free.
Last edited by mprelaw; 10-03-13 at 08:30 PM.