Ode to IZALCO
Editor Russel Jones of New Zealand Road Cyclist magazine had a discussion with himself about the FOCUS IZALCO Disc. The outcome? A little love poem … Here are the words in detail:
“Talking about disc brakes you have to talk about our R.A.T system: It’s the quickest and easiest thru-axle system I have used so far and the closest to the traditional roadie QR. The most important feature is that I was unable to detect any rotor slicing or rub after countless repositioning of the wheels; trust me, I tried to fail it but it works.”
“I’ll admit, it’s really hard to fault the ride of this bike, just as it was with the caliper brake version. Weirdly though it’s really hard to put my finger on what is right; it just is, something bringing it all back to the basics. It’s an understated, uncomplicated road bike with no fancy bells or whistles, just tweaks here and there that have made it right, all backed up with the Focus race-proven geometry.
Really, it all comes back to which model would you choose. I’ve heard this current disc trend being using as an analogy to when photography moved from film to digital. In ten years time will we just see the purists clinging to caliper brakes or are we really on the edge of a revolution?
On the other hand (and this is a huge plus for those who always refused to spec carbon rims due to their poor performance in rain) stick a set of carbon hoops on this build and you’ve got one light bike to play with.”
All this aside, perhaps the true testament to this Izalco Max is the fact I’ve put in a shed load of miles on it, just because I wanted to, felt the need to. This bike, just like its caliper counterpart, simply makes you want to find an excuse to go and get out there, run amuck amongst the hills, lay it out on the flats and push your limits on every descent. It feels like a proper road bike should; and I never want to give it back - again.
Read the full report in NZRC May/Jun Issue #34