Wednesday, February 20, 2013

From Spain to Italy, no visa required.

The cycling community is terrific. Of course it is because I believe my own hype on what we have here in Lancaster County in the way of the routes we pedal and the number of people who ride bicycles for fitness and recreation. 

Aside from that, I met a guy at a race back in 2012 who is a mutual friend of a guy I know who's the nephew of  an ex-business owner with whom I worked for back in the day. Lost yet? Maybe. 

Long story short, we exchanged smiles and high fives on the curb last year, as we watched the race go by. He found me on Twitter, then Facebook, booked a ride as soon as family time permitted then BOOM, our list of cycling friends went '+1'.

As we clicked off the miles, talked about work, family, politics and other absurdities of life, he slowly grew in love with my celeste Bianchi I've been riding on the road this winter. Eventully Monty made the decision to get himself one in the fall of 2013. 

After much discussion of which Bianchi would be the proper tool for his job, the Infinito was decided upon. This guy is a diesel, can roll on the power, stomp over a climb and pace-line really well. That's what the Infinito likes to do; stiff enough for the 'over the top of the hill-jump out of the saddle', stable in cross winds when taking a pull at the front of the group and mellow out the bad pavement on those farm roads we wander onto time and time again.

A few weeks ago, as I powered down the Garmin from a ride, I received a text from a cyclist who is getting divorced and needs to get ride of some gear. One of the items is a 53cm Infinito frame set. Knowing this guy and how he takes care of this bikes, the frame has to be in great shape. I pass the news onto Monty and he makes the connection and retrieves the frame later that week. 

The frame shows up at my house, a box of Ultegra 6700 bits and his high mileage Spainish branded road bike so I could transfer the measurements over to the Infinito during the build.

I have to confess, I've been around many Infinito bikes. They're very nice but I have never built one from the frame up. Having build up my Oltre last year puts the benchmark up there for bike builds in terms of frame quality, fit and finish. Naturally you compare all bike assemblies from there onward; like you'd compare the giddiness of your first kiss to all the rest in life. I want an Infinito now. 

To buy a bike from a shop, go through the sales process, have it fitted properly to you and then rack in the miles seems like 95% of the deal is done. When you have the opportunity to to build up a bike you enjoy, from the frame on up, the love goes deeper; that extra 5% in my opinion. For those not able to build up their bike from the parts box on up, that ok, I'm being a bit over passionate. 

The bike is done almost done, Monty has been by to see in my garage, the love affair has started already and I can't wait to join him on his first ride.
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