Perhaps its fitting that this year’s Best Road Bike award went to a gravel bike. There’s simply no denying the category’s growth, with most builders not only showing one or more models but also saying that a significant chunk of customer bikes going out the door are designed for riding the rough stuff.Rob English is known not just for making some very light bikes out of steel, but also for making some very interesting frames, too. The bike above may look normal, but it’s got a few treats worth seeing. And the rest of his bikes just keep turning things up, notch after notch…
A carbon fiber headtube gets sleeved inside a custom cut steel tube. Note the extremely clean cable entry for the rear brake and the molded one-piece bar and stem. This one’s his own Gravel Race Bike and is made specifically for SRAM eTAP.
The Stainless Ultralight comes in at just 9.9lbs with this build, which is admittedly over the top. The pedals are no longer available, and, like many of the bikes shown here, is for Rob himself. Being a smaller guy, he can get away with a lot, but it’s 100% rideable.
The front brake hose enters through the stem and pops out of the fork leg, completely hidden from view.. The rear brake enters just behind the head tube and runs all the way back to the caliper inside the frame.