The dude over at Fit Recovery (Jim) put together a handy post outlining the difference between road and tri bikes. He compares a Trek Speed 7 with a Madone 4.6. Obviously, a road bike like the Madone is far more versatile, but Jim stacks the photos of the two bikes, making for an easy comparison of their geometries. He describes exactly how differently the rider is positioned, noting that tri bike is set up to work the quads, which saves the hamstrings for the run. Ah ha! Good to know.
The current price for a Trek Speed Concept 7 is $2729, but with Texas state tax that comes to $2954 (rounding up to $3000 because you might as well buy $46 worth of Gu while you’re there dropping $2954 on a single-purpose machine).
Tonight I went to Tri Vendor Night at Bicycle Sport Shop where I got into a great conversation with the Bontrager rep. I’m interested in getting clip-on aerobars for my road bike and he pointed out that, as mentioned in the Fit Recovery post, getting into the aero position is going to change my position overall. So he recommends getting a bike fit specifically for aerobar days. He also spelled out for me the differences between road and tri saddles (accommodating the shift in position to the front of the saddle that tri geometry brings), the coolest part of which is that tri saddles (well, the Bontrager ones anyway) come with little transition hooks on them, so you can hang your bike on the rack by the back of the saddle. Then you just need to pull it straight up and forward to zip on out of T1 (much less hassle than when you hang it by the nose). It’s been quite the educational week up in here.