The Focus Izalco Max AG2R

“The Tour was a huge success for the French squad and saw it win the team prize and claim second on GC with Jean-Christophe Peraud, plus sixth with Romain Bardet. Blel Kadri provided a spectacular stage win in the Vosges mountains which netted him the polka-dot jersey for a few days, and the team had a constant presence.

“And they did all of that on a bike just like this one. The Izalco isn’t some team replica with a photocopy paint job and corners cut to keep the price down, it’s a genuine team bike. You could buy one of these, sneak into the team’s truck, pop it on a rack and it might be raced the next day. Whatever sensations these top pros experienced on their bikes, you will too.”

– Read all of Graham Springett’s appraisal in RIDE Cycling Review #65(Find out more of what’s in the issue – contents #RIDE65.)

Click the image below to view 22 images of the Focus in our Izalco Max (team issue) gallery.

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Each issue of RIDE Cycling Review features five bike tests and each product is put through a series of protocols that have evolved over the years. We now subject the review bikes to…

• A ‘Build Report’ written by a mechanic after his fully disassembles the bike (and weighs each component) to get a closer look inside the frame and then see how it all comes back together.

• Flex test jig – which measures frame deflection when a 40kg weight is applied to the right crank.

• ‘Wheel test’ – when we measure flex of a rim.

• Weight list of every component… the actual weight, not just what the manufacturers want to promote.

• Full specification listing

The review itself relates to the ride quality and characteristics of each bike as observed by someone who gets to use it for several weeks (or, at times, months).




Round Table Observations

Since RIDE #54, we have  also published a two-page spread dubbed ‘Round Table Observations’. The concept is to get everyone in the office to ride all six review bikes one after the other and offer a brief appraisal of what they feel the highlight or lowlights are. Here are the unedited voice files from each tester’s first impression of the Focus Izalco Max:

Shane: Focus_Shane

Rob: Focus_Rob

Harrison: Focus_Harrison


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There are now 20 issues of RIDE available in a digital format via Zinio, with reviews of 116 bikes.

RIDE Media publishes RIDE Cycling Review, a quarterly magazine all about cycling.