Frameset – Scappa Purosangue
Wheels – ENVE SES 3.4
Tires – Schwalbe Pro One 25mm, tubeless
Hubs – Chris King R45
Handlebar – ENVE Compact Road, 42cm
Stem – ENVE Road Stem, 130mm, with Computer Mount
Seatpost – ENVE Seatpost, 400mm
Saddle – “ssshhh”
Bartape – Arundel Synth Gecko
Groupset – Shimano Dura-Ace 9000
Crankset – Rotor 3D+ INpower, 52/36
Pedals – Boardman Pro
Bottle Cages – ENVE Cage
Weight – 6.79kg / 14.9 lbs

This bike was custom made for me in 2014. It’s a pure expression of the high-performance road bike – the name Purosangue means ‘thoroughbred’ in Italian – with round tubes, rim brakes, low weight, and high stiffness. The steering geometry isn’t especially aggressive because I like a bike to feel neutral so that I can measure out the aggression myself. Descending on this bike is as fun as climbing on it is effective. It fits me and my spider-monkey proportions wonderfully, and I’m comfortable on it all day.

Sadly, Scappa seemed to cease trading in 2015. It was actually a German company but with an Italian heart. Scappa designed the bikes and they were manufactured for them by the artisans at Sarto in Italy. You can see the different types of carbon fiber through the thin paint, especially around the seat cluster.

It has been all over Europe, raced a few gran fondos, bagged a couple of nice results, and even had to do winter duty one year. It still cleans up pretty well, considering. I wouldn’t risk it in a bunch race, though, and would walk barefoot over gravel before chancing a stone chip. The Scappa is afforded this luxury because tough bikes stand ready to endure such violence on its behalf.

The SES 3.4s are the perfect wheels for this bike. They’re light and fast, the braking is incredible, and the stability is off the scale, unflinching even in storms. Tubeless 25s add comfort, grip, puncture protection, and more speed, making them feel like a much deeper rim. In the past I’ve ridden really mountainous gran fondos on superlight tubulars. While those might feel good on steep grades, over a whole course the 3.4s are faster and much more enjoyable.

It was only recently that I finally got the Scappa completely ENVE’d-out, and even as staff I was surprised by how much difference the components make to the ride experience compared to the high-end carbon fiber products they replaced. The stem and bar brought a new level of precision to the steering, and all of it boosted comfort. Four years in, it almost feels like a new bike.

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