As mentioned before, Cannondale have over 15 years experience in
oversized cranks; the theory being the stiffer the axle the lighter
the crank. This latest version is the SiSL2.
The chainrings (big and small) are actually one piece; these were
my new favourite size of 52/36 (the so called mid-compact) - I
think it's a great compromise: you lose nothing on the top end and
climbing with a 36 is much nicer than on a 39
The Black Inc, in keeping with its name, used to be a super
stealth all black bike. This year they have added some white
elements to the rear triangle. It looks very smart. My wife, who
despairs about the number of different bikes I leave in her
kitchen, conceded that this one was "very nice".
The Black Inc Supersix is the lightest bike I have personally
Its genuinely astonishing how light it is.
Not surprisingly, climbing is a joy. Super light frame, stiff BB
and a stiff crank means you fly up hills. I set a lot of Strava PBs
around Kent on this bike !
Apart from the proprietary cranks, the full groupset is
new Shimano Di2. So shifting is sublime, and the brakes are
fabulous. Great stopping power and good modulation
The bike comes with Enve 4.5s wheels (which are part of this
push to make the bike more aero). I actually think 3.4s would suit
its character better. I tried a number of wheels; mainly enve 2.2
climbing wheels and they were perfect.
The post and stem is Enve and is about as good as it gets.
Interestingly the post is 25.4, which is rare in this world of
31.6mm oversized. It's meant to give the bike a bit more
compliance, but I have to say it looks slightly odd against the
huge carbon main triangle of the frame.
The bars are Enve, but instead of the round ones (which we
adore) these are the SES Aero ones. I am personally not a fan of
these; I like round tops on my bars so I can grab them when
climbing. These have super wide, flat tops - presumably for added
aero. But they dramatically limit your hand positions. Its probably
the only component choice on the entire bike I have an issue
They do look cool though - so there is that…
I was saying to a colleague at work there has never been a more
exciting time as a consumer to buy a bike. The sheer quality of the
offerings out there is remarkable. At this level its very hard to
say one 'super bike' is defientely better than another. Pick a bike
that fits you like a glove and that suits your riding style.
For me, the Black Inc is just about perfect. I love the fact
that it has a level top tube in an era so many bikes are sloping.
On a bigger bike, with a taller saddle height, I think a level top
tube just looks "right". But its biggest advantage is its weight,
or lack thereof.
There is a reason the Evo family is so popular in European
sportives; this bike was born to climb. If I had to pick one bike
to set a climbing PB it would very likely be this.
See more photos of the Black Inc Supersix on our