Thursday, August 28, 2014

Hunter Allen Reviews the Pinarello Dogma Think 2

Peaks Coaching Group Pinarello Dogma Review Hunter Allen

A bike should go fast, handle great, and keep you comfortable throughout the ride. The Pinarello Dogma Think 2 does just that! When I first built up my frameset and got it all together, I was impressed by the incredible attention to detail on the Dogma. She is a real beauty, inside and out! Outfitted with the MOST handlebars (which I love and have put on all my bikes for the last eight years), my Dogma Think 2 has an incredible combination of good looks and functionality. I’ve admired and ogled the Pinarello for years; to me they are the epitome of Italian style and raciness, and they remind me of the sleek, curvaceous, sexy, super-fast cars that also come out of Italy, of which I am also a big fan!

Overall

I said it once and I’ll say it again: this thing is a “velvet hammer.” I’ve been fortunate over the years to ride many high-end bicycles and can detect slight differences in geometry, stiffness/flexibility, and handling. When I pushed the Dogma to its limits, I learned one key thing: no matter how smooth it made things feel, it was faster! To be honest, this surprised me. My immediate impression was a super-smooth, rock-solid bike that was comfortable right out of the build, but this can sometimes come with a slight penalty in handling and acceleration. Not with the Dogma. I am a decent sprinter, so I want a bike that will accelerate instantly and give me the feeling of instant speed, as well, and the Dogma does that perfectly. The more miles I put on it, the more I was able to push this bike. As I rode all my local favorite fast spots and big downhills, it was confirmed that I was faster, often 1-2 mph faster.

Handling

The Dogma handling is pure smooth, with some unique handling properties. For descending and hard corning, the Dogma is highly predictable. My standard test of a new bike is to climb up my local 25-minute climb and then descend back down it. Now, I have probably descended the mountain over 500 times in the past 30 years, so I know every divot and bump in the road, along with the perfect line. This makes me a bit demanding with a bike’s cornering ability; when I want that thing to carve, I want it to carve THEN! I don’t believe in taking a casual “run” down the mountain, so the first time down on a new bike, I just make sure the brakes are working and the skewers are tight, and then I go for it. I pushed the Dogma down the mountain, pushing the handling to the limit, and this thing just sticks the turns and glues you to your lines. Most importantly, it turned exactly when I wanted it to! The feeling of this is highly confidence-building, and when I compare the data, I am always faster on the Dogma than on my other bikes.

Comfort

Here is another major plus for the Dogma. The long-term comfort of the bike is excellent, and knocking out four hours or more of a training ride is a breeze (from the comfort aspect, anyway). The solid feeling and road-absorbing quality carbon does a lot to smooth the ride. I’ve ridden a lot of pro-level bikes that can beat you up over time, but not the Dogma.

Power Testing

Stiff! The dogma performs as well as any pro-level bike I have ridden or tested, with the addition of the smooth, controlled feeling I mentioned above. Combined with the MOST handlebars (which I highly recommend), I cracked the elusive 1500-watt barrier for a peak one second, and I did it three more times to make sure it wasn’t a recording anomaly with my power meter. The bike is not an insane quick-handling, darty bike (which I neither want nor like) as some bikes can be, which is great, and it contains the perfect combination of handling for cornering and descending, along with the power numbers that tell me the feeling of smoothness isn’t also a flexing that causes a loss of power.

Riding the amazing Pinarello Dogma has been a pleasure. It is easily one of the most enjoyable bikes I have owned that delivers on the promise!


Hunter Allen is a USA Cycling Level 1 coach and former professional cyclist. He is the coauthor of Training and Racing with a Power Meter and Cutting-Edge Cycling, co-developer of TrainingPeaks’ WKO software, and CEO and founder of Peaks Coaching Group. He and his coaches create custom training plans for all levels of athletes. Hunter can be contacted directly through PeaksCoachingGroup.com

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