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I am in the market for a road bike and this will be my first road bike. I currently run marathons and would like to purchase a bike to cross train. I will probably ride at least two days a week and possible throw in a sprint triathlon. My budget is also a concern and would like to stay under $1000. I am not comfortable purchasing a bike off the internet at a discount knowing nothing about them. The bikes I have researched but not tried yet.
Trek 1.2
Felt F95
Giant Defy 3
Cannondale CAAD9-7
All are under $1000 according to local bike shop websites. Was hoping for suggestions.
 

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Fat'r + Slow'r than TMB
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Each of those bikes are built by good companies. I recommend you go to the shops selling them and see which one fits your needs the best. After all is said and done the most important thing is not the brand of bike but how well it fits, which your local shop is able to help out the most with.
 

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Agreed. Those are good $1000 bikes and bike fit is of utmost imporant.

Try to find the best sales person at the shop who knows about fit and explain to them where you're coming from and what you want out of the bike. But do your homework and double check the sales person's advice, as all cyclist have their own credo and thoughts that may or may not be right for you. For example, there is a guy at the shop who firmly believes to setup everyone in aggressive racing positions that optimized for performance and speed and convinces people that they will just grow into getting used to the neck and back discomfort. I disagree with that.

I was looking at your list and noticed that some bikes have double or triple front cranks. If you are going to be tackling hill climbs, a triple crank like the one on the Defy 3 will help you spin your way up any hill. But if you live in a relatively flat region of the country, then a double will do just fine. Tackling a huge climb on a double is possible, as the pro riders do, but you have to be in good shape and conditioned for the climb.

Alot of bikes in this bike range have compact cranks, which is somewhere between a racing double and leisure triple.

Looks wise, the CAAD9-7 gets my vote. Simple graphics look better in the long run over of-the-moment styling paint and decal schemes. But this is strictly a subjective matter.

Welcome to the sport.
 

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that ain't chamois cream
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Frames on all four are about the same. I don't know enough about wheels to comment but there again, they seem pretty much similar. So I think it comes down to componentry: The CAAD9-7 has the nicest drivetrain (tiagra/sora mix, which I think is just fine unless you're going to be racing a lot). Also the CAAD is a very nice aluminum frame.

The Trek is a close second (full sora - doesn't have the tiagra rear derailleur). The Giant uses a shimano 2200 drivetrain, which won't last as long as the tiagra/sora stuff.

The Felt has the flash factor (I think the kids call it "bling"?), but as another poster said, beauty fades. You'll be happier with the slightly nicer componentry on the Cannondale in the long run.
 

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Also, should you decide to not like cycling after trying it, the Cannondale will have good resell value because it's a Cannondale and the components are a notch above the others.

Oh blasphemy for even mentioning the possibly of someone not liking cycling ;)
 

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Get the Cannondale as long as it fits......But make sure it does!Seriously,make sure it fits. If you don't LOVE it when you try it out,don't buy it.Buy the bike that speaks to you the most.The one that you just feel like is you and fits you like a glove.If you test out enough bikes,you'll know what I'm talking about when you find the right one=).Go luck and welcome to cycling !
 
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