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Tri vs Road Bike

The million dollar question....

I'm looking at getting a new bike early next year and am after some advice. I'm a keen cyclist, and 'compete' in around 4/5 olympic distance tri's a year. Next year I'm looking at making the jump to a 70.3 with the ultimate aim being an Ironman in 2015. I think in the long run I'll be sticking with Olympic distance though.


So, onto the dilemma... Do I buy a tri specific bike or a road bike. My budget is around £2k. As far as I can see I have 3 options...


1) Keep current alloy road bike for the occasional jaunt into the hills, and buy a carbon Tri bike for specific training and event use

2) Sell current bike and buy a carbon road bike as an all rounder to be used in Tri's too - including the Ironman

3) Buy Tri bike, (attempt to) complete Ironman, then sell and swap for road bike


Are road bikes OK to complete an Iroman on? Along with the mountain of training?


I'd be grateful of any advice and experience... I don't fancy getting the decision wrong!


  • Hi Rob,


    The way I see it is this: you've got a road bike now, but you don't have a tri bike. If you sell your road bike and get a better road bike, you'll still only have a road bike, albeit a better one. 

    If you keep your bike and get a tri bike - boom, you've got two bikes. Two bikes are pretty much always better than one. Plus, you can keep the tri bike indoors over the winter, on the turbo perhaps, and ride the road bike outside. Also, as you can ride a tri bike in age-group Olympic-distance races, you'll be able to race on the tri bike even if you never do another Ironman, and still get the aero advantage. 

    Another bonus of having two bikes is that if something catastrophic should happen to one of them (and I hope it never does!) then you'd still have a bike to train on while the other gets fixed.  

    Just my opinion though, hope it helps!

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