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  1. #1
    Senior Member VanceMac's Avatar
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    Track Tire Questions

    Home for all track-related tire questions.

    Most popular tubulars:
    Racing/indoor/pursuit (read: fast, not very durable or long-lasting)
    • Vittoria Pista Evo CL/CS: 160gr (22mm). CL is slick, CS very fine diamond tread. Non-EVO Pista CS very heavy and purely training tire. Non-EVO Pista CS Elite splits difference between EVO and non-EVO CS.
    • Vittoria Crono CS: 160gr (22mm). Listed as Road/TT tire, but fine for Track.
    • Tufo Elite Jet: 160gr (20mm).

    All-around
    • Tufo S3 Lite: 215gr (21mm).
    • Continental Sonderklasse II: 215gr (23mm). Good all-around… from training to mass-start racing. Can be pricey.
    • Continental Tempo II: 220gr (22mm). Another good all-around option. Cheaper alternative to Sonderklasse.

    Training
    • Continental Steher: 250gr (23mm). Very popular trainer, at value price.
    • Continental Sprinter: 260gr (22mm). Heavy, but durable, training tire.

    Not meant to be an exhaustive list, but I'll be happy to add/change/delete as anyone sees fit (Schwalbe?). The subjective comments aren't necessarily mine, but from previous comments both here and FGF. The general categories are overlapping and very subjective.
    Last edited by VanceMac; 04-27-14 at 09:28 AM.

  2. #2
    Resident Alien Racer Ex's Avatar
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    In addition to breaking out indoor vs. outdoor (and there are some indoor or outdoor tracks I'd run certain tire and others I wouldn't), I'd be inclined to break out pursuit vs. mass start as well. Wear and fragility is an issue for some of the high end stuff.

    And clincher/tubular.

    Google doc anyone?

    For the guy (8bits) that was asking about a practice and racing tire I'd ask where he was, and what he's doing as far as races. There's concrete and there's concrete.
    Last edited by Racer Ex; 12-08-13 at 07:13 PM.

  3. #3
    aka mattio queerpunk's Avatar
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    My thoughts on track tubulars:
    Your intended surface should go a long way in determining what kind of tire you use. There were a lot of nice tires shredded at Nationals this year. I had a teammate who love-love-loved his Sonderklasse, but if I'm pinching a penny I'm not going to go out on that limb.

    racing on outdoor wood, I've really liked the Steher. Stehers have lasted me over a season and have by and large been nicer than I expected. I know they're not as nice as they used to be, but I'm content with where they're at (not for retail price, mind you). Grippy and supple, way different from a Sprinter.

    the Vittoria Pista always struck me as being a bit slim on tread. Looking down from above and seeing the tan sidewalls 'sticking out' from around the black tread always made me wonder if I'd have grip when I'd need it, on steep banking. The answer was yes, the times I've used that tire, but I didn't like wondering.

    Tufos? I've known a lot of people who have used them, but I've never liked them. Always struck me as being hard and dead-feeling tires.

    I know a couple people who swear by the Veloflex Record.
    the hipster myth.

    i practice vagabondery.

  4. #4
    Resident Alien Racer Ex's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by queerpunk View Post
    I know a couple people who swear by the Veloflex Record.
    The pair I bought delaminated in a few hundred miles.

  5. #5
    Senior Member Brian Ratliff's Avatar
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    Many people at Alpenrose (outdoor painted concrete) use Vittoria Corsa CX. It's a road tire, but it's fast, takes very high pressures, and it holds up well on the concrete.
    Cat 2 Track, Cat 3 Road.
    "If you’re new enough [to racing] that you would ask such question, then i would hazard a guess that if you just made up a workout that sounded hard to do, and did it, you’d probably get faster." --the tiniest sprinter

  6. #6
    Senior Member bitingduck's Avatar
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    Cool - thanks for putting this together.

    Various comments:
    - Evo Pistas - they're great tires, but aren't super durable. When I was racing a lot I'd go through three sets per season, and I was usually using cheap tires on 32 spoke box rims for training. I'm not convinced there's any performance advantage to the either the treaded or non-treaded in any particular environment-- tread doesn't really add much value to bike tires in general. I always got whichever ones I could get a reasonable price on.

    - I've used the Tufo S3 Pro on the track, but never the lite (and I think I have S3 pros on most of my wheels right now). There are apparently a lot of differences among the various "S3" tires, but I know the pro works well, even at Carson. The Lite comes in various colors-- any that aren't black are probably a bad idea in Carson or any other steep smooth wood track.

    - The non-Evo pistas cost about the same as a Conti Steher, and aren't nearly as nice a tire.

    - I haven't ridden the Conti Tempo II's, but I did ride some Tempos a long time ago, and found them to be a much harder grey compound than the other Conti tires and would probably put them in TT-only, rather than all around. I wouldn't want to ride them slow up high.

    For Clinchers, there are at least couple that seem to work well in Carson:
    - Conti Supersonic - they're a lightweight clincher that sticks well. I've ridden them in Madisons at Carson. Carleton and I disagree on the durability-- he claims they're race day only and wear quickly, but my gf has used them a bunch on some of my wheels and gone from the track to road to off road (fire roads) on them and they've held up well for a long time. The difference might be that Carleton weighs about twice as much as she does.

    - Vittoria Rubino Pro (black) - they used to be the stock tires on Felts, not sure if they still are, but they stick fairly well. Not a spectacular tire, but they don't suck.
    Track - the other off-road
    http://www.lavelodrome.org

  7. #7
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    Quote Originally Posted by Brian Ratliff View Post
    Many people at Alpenrose (outdoor painted concrete) use Vittoria Corsa CX. It's a road tire, but it's fast, takes very high pressures, and it holds up well on the concrete.
    I'm also a fan of the Vittoria Evo Corsa CX tubulars - and am running these on my track wheels, road race wheels and TT's wheels.

    My bike originally came with Vittoria Diamante Pro light's and have found these a great clincher on both concrete and timber for training and racing.
    http://climbinglama.blogspot.com.au

  8. #8
    Senior Member bitingduck's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Dalai View Post
    My bike originally came with Vittoria Diamante Pro light's and have found these a great clincher on both concrete and timber for training and racing.
    IIRC those were supposed to replace the Rubino Pros in the product line, but they ended up keeping both.
    Track - the other off-road
    http://www.lavelodrome.org

  9. #9
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    There is the Vittoria Diamonte pista clincher tire that seems to hold up ok and rolls well. For training tubulars the Evo CX is my fist choice. Conti sprinters are ok. Tufo S3 Pro tires work ok, but I destroyed some using them on the trainer/rollers so would not recommend long term trainer usage.

  10. #10
    Elitist carleton's Avatar
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    I'm sticking this.

  11. #11
    Senior Member wens's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by carleton View Post
    I'm sticking this.
    Good call.

    How do you guys decide how much pressure to run? Obviously for an indoor wooden track it's as high as the tire goes, but what about outdoor concrete tracks or such?
    Do you think we're gonna make it? / I don't know unless we try \ you could sit here scared to move / or we could take them by surprise

  12. #12
    Senior Member
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    I have a 5 year old Veloflex Record that's been on three wheels. It's now my front track training tire and shows little sign of giving up the ghost soon. When I bought this tire, they only came in 20mm, which I decided was too narrow. This has been, in my experience, an extremely durable tire for an all-out race tire. Now that they make a 22mm I'm considering using these instead of Vittoria EVO's. A bit pricey, though.

    Edit: This tire is ridden almost exclusively outdoors. Highly recommended.

  13. #13
    Elitist carleton's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Baby Puke View Post
    I have a 5 year old Veloflex Record that's been on three wheels. It's now my front track training tire and shows little sign of giving up the ghost soon. When I bought this tire, they only came in 20mm, which I decided was too narrow. This has been, in my experience, an extremely durable tire for an all-out race tire. Now that they make a 22mm I'm considering using these instead of Vittoria EVO's. A bit pricey, though.

    Edit: This tire is ridden almost exclusively outdoors. Highly recommended.
    +1 on the Veloflex Record. I had one on my Mavic Io for 3 seasons. Even though it saw limited use (big races only), it was still very supple and showed no delamination and very little signs of wear. I would consider using it as an every day training tire. Especially being that I had so many unexplained flats with Conti Stehers over the years.

  14. #14
    Elitist carleton's Avatar
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    Continental Steher: 250gr (23mm).
    Pros:
    Great feel.
    Perfect amount of rubber thickness for me. Felt solid when pulling Gs in turns
    Great race tire for the price.
    OK for daily training if you can afford to replace it if it flats.

    Cons:
    Quite a few random, unexplained flats. Like the tire was full when I loaded the bike on the car. Flat when I got home. I watched as once the tire "popped" as the bike was leaning against a wall. Weird.
    Tires separated from the base tape after a few months. Not sure if that affected safety or performance.

    Comments:
    I used these as my training and rear race tire for 2 full seasons. I generally liked them.


    Continental Sprinter: 260gr (22mm).
    Pros:
    This tire has a lot of rubber. It's thick.
    Very little chance of flatting this.
    GREAT for daily, worry-free training.
    Great price.

    Cons:
    This tire has a lot of rubber.
    So much rubber sometimes leads to "thread squirm" when pulling Gs in turns you can feel the rubber stretching laterally in a gummy kind of way. But, I'm a big guy stressing the tire a lot. Most won't feel that.
    Heavy. It's not really a "track" tire. It's for the road to deal with debris.
    Tires separated from the base tape after a few months. Not sure if that affected safety or performance.
    Too heavy to put on race wheels, but many do.

    Comments:
    It's great if you ride a track that has lots of punctures due to debris.


    Continental Sonderklasse:
    Pros:
    Very thin rubber. Feels good.

    Cons:
    Thin rubber is delicate.
    Not for daily training.

    Comments:
    To me, this is a special event tire. Maybe indoors only on your race wheels.


    Veloflex Record 19
    Pros:
    Good feel.
    Nice amount of rubber.
    Long lasting.
    Great price if you find the right store.

    Cons:
    None from my point of view.

    Comments:
    I used one on my special race wheel for 3 years. No complaints. No flats. Held up perfectly.

  15. #15
    Senior Member Brian Ratliff's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by wens View Post
    Good call.

    How do you guys decide how much pressure to run? Obviously for an indoor wooden track it's as high as the tire goes, but what about outdoor concrete tracks or such?
    I had the mechanic at a track specific bike shop tell me what I should run. It's worked out fine so I stick to it.
    Cat 2 Track, Cat 3 Road.
    "If you’re new enough [to racing] that you would ask such question, then i would hazard a guess that if you just made up a workout that sounded hard to do, and did it, you’d probably get faster." --the tiniest sprinter

  16. #16
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    And my take on Stehers:

    I'm relatively new to them, but I've been through four in the past two years. Two of them developed spontaneous slow leaks that were not at the valve almost instantly. Another lasted longer before slow-leaking out. The final one has been on my rear training wheel for a while now, and is almost worn out. That's one out of four if you're counting. The feel is pretty good on an outdoor track, but they are more slippery that the $30 whatever brand clinchers on my training bike wheel set on wood. I stopped bringing that wheel to LA cuz I can't ride warm-ups with anyone else on it-- I start to slide at 'normal' slow speeds. And yes, I wipe with alcohol before riding on wood.

    Did I mention they are a supreme ***** to get mounted? Verdict: Never again. Will try Vittoria road tires for my next track training set.

  17. #17
    aka mattio queerpunk's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Baby Puke View Post
    Did I mention they are a supreme ***** to get mounted? Verdict: Never again. Will try Vittoria road tires for my next track training set.
    Heh. That's all Contis. They, uh, really need a good stretching.
    the hipster myth.

    i practice vagabondery.

  18. #18
    Senior Member
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    As long as I'm ranting, some thoughts on the Vittoria Evo Pista:

    I think these are the best special event tires for the money. They are light, feel fast, and have been consistently high quality for me, and are usually considerably cheaper than the equivalents from other makers. I've probably been through 10 or so of them since I started using them in 2009, and all have been good. No slow leaks, delaminations or blow-outs. But these are special event tires. They're 165 grams, for **** sake! That means you use them a handful of times per year, not at your weekly scratch race. The tread is thin, that's why they're light! I inspect the tread carefully every time I use these, and if there's a hole or a bit of missing tread, that tire is dead. Have a pair on hand as back-ups.

    That said, with this kind of use and care, I've never had a problem with them. And they are great riding tires, great grip and very lively. Take a lot of pressure, too. I recently had a chance to try one of the pink Dugasts-- couldn't tell the difference (not that I'm some kind of expert). I have found that the treaded tires last longer and seem to resist cuts a bit better than the slick tires, but I do ride these on outdoor concrete, indoors on wood might be just fine on the slick ones. Slick ones might have a hair more grip on steep banking, but I have no proof of this.

  19. #19
    Senior Member zizou's Avatar
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    For clinchers i use vittoria diamonte pro pista. 150 g and can inflate to 10 bar / 145 psi. Would recommend.

    No puncture protection strip but the pro light version has that with a small weight penalty. Although I cant say i notice the difference between either tyre!

  20. #20
    JMR
    JMR is offline
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    Quote Originally Posted by Baby Puke View Post
    As long as I'm ranting, some thoughts on the Vittoria Evo Pista:

    I think these are the best special event tires for the money. They are light, feel fast, and have been consistently high quality for me, and are usually considerably cheaper than the equivalents from other makers. I've probably been through 10 or so of them since I started using them in 2009, and all have been good. No slow leaks, delaminations or blow-outs. But these are special event tires. They're 165 grams, for **** sake! That means you use them a handful of times per year, not at your weekly scratch race. The tread is thin, that's why they're light! I inspect the tread carefully every time I use these, and if there's a hole or a bit of missing tread, that tire is dead. Have a pair on hand as back-ups.

    That said, with this kind of use and care, I've never had a problem with them. And they are great riding tires, great grip and very lively. Take a lot of pressure, too. I recently had a chance to try one of the pink Dugasts-- couldn't tell the difference (not that I'm some kind of expert). I have found that the treaded tires last longer and seem to resist cuts a bit better than the slick tires, but I do ride these on outdoor concrete, indoors on wood might be just fine on the slick ones. Slick ones might have a hair more grip on steep banking, but I have no proof of this.
    i agree... I put these on my race wheels for Nationals (indoor wood 250) and they were beautiful!

    A mate put them on his new wheels and rode them on our outdoor concrete track and they lasted one session... Expensive training session!

    JMR

  21. #21
    Senior Member Quinn8it's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Baby Puke View Post
    And my take on Stehers:

    I'm relatively new to them, but I've been through four in the past two years. Two of them developed spontaneous slow leaks that were not at the valve almost instantly. Another lasted longer before slow-leaking out. The final one has been on my rear training wheel for a while now, and is almost worn out. That's one out of four if you're counting. The feel is pretty good on an outdoor track, but they are more slippery that the $30 whatever brand clinchers on my training bike wheel set on wood. I stopped bringing that wheel to LA cuz I can't ride warm-ups with anyone else on it-- I start to slide at 'normal' slow speeds. And yes, I wipe with alcohol before riding on wood.

    Did I mention they are a supreme ***** to get mounted? Verdict: Never again. Will try Vittoria road tires for my next track training set.
    I will comment on the Stehers- since i have a ton of experience with them. I suspect i have gone through at minimum 12pairs of these tires over the last 5 years.

    The Steher has gone through 3 big changes in the time i have been using them.

    1) the original was basically identical to the old Sprinter. This was a legendary tire with a cult like following. almost all of the high praise you read about stehers was based on this version of the tire. it had black tread, with tan sidewalls and tan base tape. these wore amazingly, and had great feel and were fast for a training tire. this was a big favorite for ADT both for training and omnium type racing. Great SoCal tire for those of use training at both ADT and Encino.

    2)second life was an all black tire. tread/sidewalls/base tape. i think it performed similar to the original. from what i hear it got a puncture proof layer that may have slowed it down. i noticed a sharp decrease in life span. i think i burned through 4 pair a couple years ago…

    3) the most recent version is black tread, black sidewall with a tan base tape. as far as i can tell these are totally average, and riddled with issues. I had 3 of them spring leaks right away- likely under the base tape. one of them flatted while on the stretching rim, and i assumed it was a loose valve core and went ahead and mounted it… big pain when your new tire slowly leaks on the first day. id say the legendary performance is gone..

    the Steher is a ***** to mount- always has been. a good long stretch helps and once you have done a few they get easier, or at least you know what to expect…

    as for your experiences with them slipping at ADT- i suspect this is due to some odd wearing. In my experience these tires are about as good as it gets in terms of grip at ADT. The combination of the rubber and the slightly larger tire (more rubber contact when going slow) has yielded a tire that I've ridden through the turns at 15mph..
    I have heard that rubbing alcohol can actually harden the top layer of rubber.. that could be an issue? I think that tires ridden extensively on cement get a lot of stuff embedded and its hard to get clean with just Acetone.. may actually need to be cleaned, then sanded then cleaned again.that would only be once during the transition from cement to ADT. there is no need to wipe tires down with solvent between efforts while there. the hardening can be worse if the tire is ridden sporadically- like if you only get them on the track 3-4 times a month in season, and then they sit unused for the off season… just some thoughts..

    I have bought/mounted my last Steher… i am going to try the Vittoria Pista, that i assume will be an average performer. but I have started using one set of wheels only for encino- and long life is important there.. my ADT training/omnium wheels have always had Sonderklasse on them, but I'm a little soured on Conti now- thinking i will try the Vittoria EVO CHRONO- I'm hearing good things..

    link to a FGF thread about the Continental quality control issues:
    http://www.fixedgearfever.com/module...wtopic&t=10593

  22. #22
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    Anybody tried the Challenge track tire? Looks good on paper:
    Challenge Pista 320 Track Tubular, TUBULARS

  23. #23
    Senior Member Not the Slowest's Avatar
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    I had asked input on another thread a year or so and di not get a direct answer for tires I wanted.

    Outdoor asphalt track CLINCHER tire for a low banking 400m bumpy track.

    Looking for a good tire (duhhh) that will do the job. My Vittoria Zaffiro was stock on the bike and did the job, but it's time to get new tires
    and looking for suggestions. I do plan on using these for training, early season races and then as back-ups

    Suggestions that I received were:
    a) Conti 4000's - Simply because they last and are durable.
    b) Vredestein Fortezza TriComp _ same as Conti 4000's
    c )Veloflex Corsa - Tubular like feel, higher tpi , but more susceptible to cuts

    Thanks Robert
    Robert
    Not The Slowest, Never The Fastest, even Solo

  24. #24
    Elitist carleton's Avatar
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    I like Vredestein Fortezza TriComp because they are relatively inexpensive, durable, and support high PSI for a clincher (up to 160, I think).

    Conti GP 4000s are a good standby. The upsides are that they are easy to find and the rubber is nice grippy and supple. But they can be expensive at MSRP and only go up to 120PSI, which is fine if you aren't a heavy rider.

    If you run 120PSI or lower, even Conti Gatorskins will work. Very puncture resistant.

    I wouldn't go for "light" or "race" tires.

  25. #25
    Senior Member Impreza_aL's Avatar
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    vittoria corsa sc tubular on the zipp disc and 808

    vittoria corsa sc clincher on the clickers araya super aero 16h laced to custom phils.

    i race at hellyer 335m concrete outdoor track.

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