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Review: Cervelo P1

Hardly an Entry-level bike

While the price point of just under two grand makes the Cervelo P1 an entry level bike, it’s jam-packed with features that should price it quite a bit higher. Using the same frame as Cervelo’s higher end P2SL, the P1 offers all the aerodynamic performance that you’ll see in many of the company’s more expensive frames along with an impressive component selection that makes this an outstanding option for those looking to get into multi-sport racing.

Using a True Aero aluminum tubeset with internal cable routing, the P1 slides through the air in impressive style. Sure, you’re not going to enjoy quite the same smooth ride that you’ll experience on a carbon fibre frame like the P2 C or Cervelo’s higher end tri bikes, but you’ll certainly have no issues with performance. The P1 offers two seat post adjustments – either a shallower 75 degree set up that’s closer to road geometry, or the full-fledged aggressive tri position you can achieve with a 78 degree seat tube angle. This also enhances the bike’s appeal to beginners – they can start off in a more relaxed position and work their way to the more aggressive position as they get comfortable with their aero bars.

Most bikes in this price range will feature Shimano’s 105 gruppo, but somehow the folks at Cervelo have managed to spec the P1 with the higher level Ultegra derailleurs. In real-life terms that means you’re getting sharper, more precise shifting, which is always a good thing! The handlebar selection, a Vision alloy base bar and clip on, are a solid choice for an entry level bike, too. The R500 wheelset is another solid choice – they’re great all-around wheels for starting out and, once you get more serious about the sport, investing in some race wheels is the best bang for your aerodynamic buck.

Those aero wheels won’t be wasted on the P1, either. Cervelo has managed to put together a bike that will perform extremely well as you develop in the sport. You can spend a lot more money on a bike, but if you’re just getting into triathlon racing, you’ll be very well served with the P1.