Ridgeback Genesis

One of these days I’ll get around to writing up some notes on my bike, since lots of people seem to arrive here via a Google search for ‘Ridgeback Genesis review.’ In the meantime – firstly, it’s wonderful and I love it, and secondly, I’m slightly surprised by the new 2004 model range.

For the 2003 models, the choice was really between a Day 1 and a Day 2 – the 2 being a slightly more hardcore ‘fast road’ machine, with a lighter/stiffer frame and better components throughout, notably a much fancier set of wheels, but no mudguard eyes etc. I bought the 2 partly because late in the year the price dropped by a hundred quid, but really because it was available in my size. Which nothing else was.

This year, it looks a little like Ridgeback have decided they’ve got the brand name, so they’re building down to a price. The 2 is pegged at £700: what I paid, and hence cheaper than last year’s model. It gains carbon forks – probably a wise move when the competing Specialized machines all have them, though I don’t find mine’s alu-forked ride harsh – however, it loses the fancy triple-butted frame, which is now exclusive to the top-of-the-range Day 3. Since that model is now more expensive (using a mix of Ultegra and Dura Ace rather than 105), there’s a gaping hole between the two models. The Day 3 still isn’t available in a 60cm frame, either.

The Day 1, meanwhile, remains a cost-effective buy, but continues with what I’d class as marginal brakes – I wasn’t impressed when I rode them, whereas the Tiagra units on mine are better than I’d thought sidepulls could be. The wheels probably play a part here.

Was it worth Ridgeback dropping the fancy triple-butted frame for the sake of keeping the price point? It’s hard to say. Critically, the 2004 Day 2 has mudguard eyes, which to my (unhip) mind is a significant advantage. But I’m slightly surprised there isn’t a ‘Day 2.5’ model, spaced between the Day 2 and Day 3, with 105/Tiagra bits on the Kinesium frame.

Perhaps Ridgeback are planning a range of drop-bar bikes? Or maybe they’re not making any of the triple-butted frames this year, and are simply using up stocks from last season, limiting sales by slapping high-end kit on them? Strange.

2 thoughts on “Ridgeback Genesis”

  1. Hey,
    Did you ever see the pics of my new road bike? I say new, but it’s a year and a half now.
    Bloody Cambridge roads though: everytime I cycle into town I get a flat (commuting is fine, BTW) and everytime it drizzles the front Derrailieur locks up with the grit. Bah.

  2. Interested in your comments. I’ve just bought an ’04 Genesis Day 2, and I agree the Tiagra brakes are a must, given the speed that you can easily achieve on this machine. The guy in the bike shop said that the kinesium frame had been dropped since it didn’t cope well with the vibration that you get from long term city riding.
    I tried a few different fast flat bar bikes (Trek 1200D, Marin Mill Valley, Specialized Sirrus) in the same price range and the Day 2 is still the best spec and the best ride.

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