Apologies for for asking a question that has probably been asked a million times, but I'd love some genuine advice.
My son (13) is wanting to take up triathlon and is looking for a bike. Now, here's my quandary....
I know nothing about equipment - especially bikes (I did a couple of tri's a couple of years back but borrowed bikes). I'm led to believe that kid's tri's aren't generally on roads - more often tracks etc, so is he better buying something that isn't quite as 'road' orientated? Ideally, he'll be able to get something that he can cycle to school on as well - not least because I can't be sure that he'll stick triathlon for a long time. Unfortunately, he's very competetive, so a bad bike will undoubtedly mean he will not be able to compete and will, in turn, result in him possibly losing interest quicker.
Any advice would be thoroughly appreciated - usual criteria apply....good quality, competietive, cheap etc! I say this tongue in cheek, but would love to get an idea of what type of bike would be best that doesn't break the bank but does give him a small chance of being competitive.
hi matt, interesting questions.
i think a lot depends on how big a 13yo he is - there are quite a few 13yo out there that would easily fit an adult bike frame, while i would have struggled at his age! at 13 he'd be in the last age group for tri stars, so i think you are right that the courses are usually off-roads. that needn't necessarily mean on tracks or grass though - i've seen both in my area (grass bike course, and tarmac path). the kids at both were using road-bikes, though.
there is the usual comment for critcising 'bad kit' - good cycling legs with ordinary kit can often beat top of the line kit with legs that don't get out enough.
Thanks for this, Ris - makes sense re the 'good bike, bad legs'! he's quite a tall 12 yr old 5ft 6 (much to his 5ft 6 mother's annoyance!)
Out of interest, do you think a Boardman hybrid would go ok on grass (http://www.boardmanbikes.com/hybrid/hybrid_comp.html) or should I go onto a less 'tri-specific' forum ad ask general cycling enthusiasts?
Thanks for your help,