On Saturday I had my second high speed front wheel blowout in 2 years. This time I was really riding hard on a descent, and I hit the deck at 30 mph. The resulting road rash is still oozing blood 2 days later, not pretty. I have removed about 8 square inches of skin from my thigh, and another perfectly decent pair of bib shorts are now trashed too. The left hand Keo pedal took a big hit and while it is still usable, it’s missing part of the platform and will also need replaced. At least I wasn’t running power meter pedals this time!
The last time this happened was on the V20 and I surmised that something had dinged the rim enough to cause a blowout – this time it was caused by a sharp stone putting a gash in the sidewall of the Pro One tyre. I am now actually suspicious that perhaps the first blowout was also a gash in the tyre, even though the rim was also dinged. I did notice a hole in the Maxxis Padrone tyre that I had on the V20 at the time when I was later using it on my road bike with a tube.
I am slowly coming to the acceptance that running fragile low rolling resistance racing tyres on the Borders back roads just isn’t sensible. Too much gravel, and these tyres aren’t sturdy enough. It’s a shame, because running Pro Ones tubeless gives a lovely ride quality and are definitely smoother and faster over these not very well maintained roads. The truth is though that I have had many punctures running these tyres both with tubes and tubeless, and two of those have resulted in considerable damage to both me and the bike.
I’m going back to Duranos on the CHR for now. A bit slower, but considerably more durable. My desire to keep removing chunks of my legs is at an all time low.