The 2015 Sea Otter Classic hasn’t quite started, and yet we’re already forcing you to drink from a fire hose gushing with new cyclocross and gravel product news. Keep checking back and try to keep up—we’ll block the wind. Today we have an early look at two new gravel bikes from Raleigh in the brand new carbon Roker, and the updated steel Tamland 2. Update: We take a close, in-person look at the carbon Roker, based on an entirely new frame.
Raleigh Unveils Carbon Roker Gravel Bike
The carbon Roker is Raleigh’s first carbon entry into the “gravel bike” segment, adding to the already-impressive seven-bike gravel bike lineup that includes two models of the steel Tamland, two models of the aluminum Willard, plus the Roper, Tripper, and Furley. The Roker may be inspired after celebrity weatherman Al Roker, perhaps an upgrade to weatherman Brick Tamland? Stay tuned on the full, entertaining naming story.
To our eyes, the Roker looks like a gravel-oriented build on Raleigh’s winning carbon RXC cyclocross frame. The spy photo we have of the Roker is built with a Shimano Ultegra 6800 mechanical drivertrain, with a four-arm Ultegra 6800 compact crankset (36/52 perhaps), American Classic Argent Disc tubeless wheels, Clement X’Plor MSO 40c tires, and TRP Spyre dual piston mechanical disc brakes. Update: We take a close, in-person look at the carbon Roker, based on an entirely new frame.
While we have yet to confirm any details of the carbon Roker gravel bike, some might think putting gravel components on an existing cyclocross frame is a cop-out. Although gravel means different things to different people in different regions, and of course a new carbon mold can be expensive, we maintain that some of the best cyclocross bikes make the best gravel bikes. Lower bottom brackets and mud clearance for cyclocross also provide stability and fat tire clearance for gravel.
Stay tuned as we grab more details and an in-person look at the Sea Otter Classic.
Raleigh Steel Tamland 2 Gravel Bike Gets Wider, Adds Flare
The Reynolds steel Tamland 2 gets an update with more width.
Raleigh’s product manager Brian Fornes posted a photo of the upcoming Tamland 2 on Instagram. The handlebars get some flare for a wider grip, and the rear cassette gets a wider range and long cage rear derailleur. The Tamland 2 features a similar build to the Roker seen above, but comes with an Ultegra 6800 36/46 crankset, which is pretty standard for cyclocross, but works better than the previous 50/34 crankset for some gravel racers.
Check back later this for more details on the new Raleigh bikes, and a lot more new cyclocross and gravel bikes and gear from Sea Otter 2015.