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Popularity contest

| Blog, Cycling Plus, News | 05/12/2011 13:27pm

This weekend ITV’s I’m A Celebrity Get Me Out Of Here reality show saw a bloke from a band I don’t like crowned ‘King of the Jungle’ by TV two hosts I’m not especially fond of. But what do I know? Dougie Poynter’s McFly have sold well over one million records and I’m A Celebrity… hosted by Ant and Dec regularly drew in more than 11-million viewers. They’re popular. It is personal opinion, of course, but that doesn’t make them good.

Meanwhile myself and ‘just’ 799,999 others are telling ourselves that we’re special and clever and cerebral because we’re watching The Killing 2 on BBC4 with subtitles and everything. In TV blockbuster terms it’s not popular, but boy do we think it’s good. (Although not as good as the first one…) And then there’s me and Tom McRae. I think he’s good. Ever heard of him? No. He’s not popular. Not like that popular James Morrison who I think is rubbish. Popularity then – when we’re talking, ahem, culture –  is mainly down to taste and everyone has different tastes. But what about actual physical product, surely popular goods are popular simply because they good?

To answer this question we called in the best selling bikes from the six brands you tell us top the popularity charts for UK roadies. So, we ended up with the Giant Defy 2 (£799), Specialized Allez Elite (£900), Cube Peloton Race (£999), Boardman Team Carbon (£1299.99), Trek Madone 3.5 (£1800) and Cannondale Supersix 5 105 (£1999.99). First up, the price range is pretty interesting – from less than £800 to just shy of two grand. Popular obviously doesn’t have to mean cheap…

Best Selllers © Russell Burton/Cycling Plus

As these machines are so popular it means there’s a very good chance that you, or your riding mates, own one. So, going back to the popular culture analogy I’ve been painfully flogging, should you turn up your nose when a friend proudly shows you their Defy 2 or Madone 3.5 in much the same way you might if they asked you whether you voted for Jason Donovan or Robbie Savage on Strictly Come Dancing?

The answer is no – all six of Britain’s best sellers are excellent. As you’d expect, the more expensive machines on test – the Trek and Cannondale – are mightily impressive. In fact, both are serious contenders for our Bike of Year test. Perhaps more surprisingly the bikes at the other end of the price scale are also outstanding – the Specialized Allez Elite has, quite rightly, long been the benchmark for sub-£1000 race machines but the Giant Defy 2 is now a bona fide challenger to its crown. Obviously, I’m not going to reveal too much about the test – the magazine is on sale tomorrow – but suffice to say it proves that popular can mean good. Very good, in fact. And because these bikes are popular because you buy them it’s also reassured me that the great British public can show impeccable taste!

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This entry was posted on Monday, December 5th, 2011 at 1:27 pm and is filed under Blog, Cycling Plus, News. You can follow any responses to this entry through the RSS 2.0 feed. Both comments and pings are currently closed.

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