SPECIALIZED Secteur Sport 2010, £650, www.specialized.com
The Secteur frame is a less-expensive aluminium version of the carbon one used in Specialized's Roubaix series and this Sport model sits towards the cheaper end of a four-bike Secteur range. It has a fairly upright riding position, and Zertz inserts in the seatstays and forks help provide some cushioning on the road.
Highlights of the spec include a carbon fork, Alex rims and a sprinkling of Shimano Sora and Tiagra components, though the rest is fairly vanilla. Nevertheless, this is still an entertaining ride, more than happy to eat up those country miles despite never being ultra-quick off the mark, or super-sharp under braking.
Around town, it’s manoevrable enough to inspire confidence and feels solid enough on London’s patchy road surfaces. Rack and mudguard mounts reinforce the impression that this will make an excellent commuter machine. In fact the Secteur will suit both long or short hauls without breaking the bank or the back.