This bar is not for everybody. If your triathlon bike is your only bike or you use it for technical descents or group rides, the Brezza II Nano LTD ($900, 3tcycling.com) is not a good choice. But if your aero machine is only for straight-line, high-speed cycling and every second matters to you, this aerobar can reduce drag compared to many conventional options.
The Brezza II Nano LTD is nearly identical to the Brezza II, with one major exception: Its basebar is 25 percent narrower. Aero brakes jut so far out to the sides of the bike because the wide grip improves control when cornering and braking, but they stick in clean air every second of a race. Narrowing the brake grips lowers frontal area, a key determinant of aero drag. Handling is the tradeoff.
Riding a tri bike with the Brezza Nano is not for the inexperienced. At first, the bike feels twitchy, bordering on unstable. But after just a few hours on the bike, the body recalibrates. Eventually, guiding a tri bike through sweeping turns with the Nano becomes practically as easy as riding with a standard bar. Tearing down steep descents with tight corners never feels as stable, however. Improving the ability to handle a bike without leaving the aerobars also improves from training with the Brezza Nano.
Leaving the aero position increases resistance, and developing the skills to steer through moderate corners from the aero position saves time. Riding the Brezza Nano forces the rider to get comfortable directing a bike from a narrow position, a valuable skillset when cornering with your elbows just inches apart.
This aerobar can provide a valuable speed boost for confident bike handlers who have a second bike available in the garage for technical rides.
The length of the extensions can be adjusted greatly, which helps match a wide range of positions. The elbow pads, however, only offer a few centimeters of fore-aft position range. The bar’s width adjustment range is substantial. Stack height can be tweaked moderately, but the range doesn’t match some of the newer ultra-adjustable bars with pedestal riser spacers.
This article was originally published in the Nov./Dec. 2013 issue of Inside Triathlon magazine.