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Bikes from the bunch – Bright, Victoria (part 3), Parlee

Bikes from the bunch – Bright, Victoria (part 3), Parlee

The third rider interview from the Bright ‘Bikes from the Bunch’ series of vox pops… Peter and his Parlee.


  • Bike shop mechanic
  • Age: 52.
  • Height: 180cm.
  • Weight: 75kg.


The bike?

“This is a Parlee Z5, that used to be owned by my boss at work. I’ve had it for about three years. I think the lay-up of the carbon makes it ride really smoothly, it takes the bumps out of the road. It’s really smooth – our roads are fairly chunky. 

“It’s a US brand, and I got it off the boss, and he got it from Melbourne.

“There are a couple of Parlees in Bright, but we haven’t sold one since.

“I get the odd compliment, but I think nothing of it and I ride it and ride it. It’s a bit unusual, but I just ride it.”


The Groupset?

“It’s got SRAM Force, which was picked because it was the lightest at the time. It’s 10-speed Double Tap, which I don’t mind. You get used to it, it doesn’t miss a beat really. 

“I’d be happy to stick with SRAM, I do feel it’s pretty good stuff and I’ve had no problem with this combination.

“Although it’s now an option, I wouldn’t want wireless shifting – I know can fix mine [but] you can’t fix wireless sometimes. 

“Working in a bike shop, I sometimes see when people have problems and it’s more than we can fix. Some of the issues can’t even be fixed on the road, like a flat battery, whereas with mine you could at least tie it in the right gear if you had to.” 


Kilometre count?

“I’m doing around 300-400 a week.

“I’ve only got back into it in the last 12 months. I’d been riding a little bit over the last few years. I’d be lucky to do 200, but the last eight months I’ve been doing a lot more.

“I’m an old roadie way back – my last full season was in 1989. 

“I’ve done a few mountain bike races but this is as fit as I’ve been for a long time. That’s down to more time on the bike – my son is a downhiller and the last six or seven years I’ve been working with him. Every day I got off, I shuttled him. This year I haven’t been going away on the weekends with him racing.”


Good points?

“It handles well. It’s smooth. I’ve got the Strava record on this side of Tawonga, so that would suggest it’s pretty fast, and I got fourth fastest on the other side this morning. 

“It’s definitely predictable – you just lay it in and hold it.

“I’ve got Vittoria Corsa tyres with graphene and I’ve got a lot of confidence in those. The 25s help – I had 23s because I’m old school, but coming down Tawonga Gap one day I hit a cat eye and I thought the wheel had exploded – I hit it pretty hard. With the 25s on I can run over them at high speed and it hardly deviates.

“It’s light, 6.9kg, and it’s good to climb with. It’s stiff enough when you get out of the saddle.”


Bad Points?

“The 25mm tyres get a bit close in the frame at the back. Other than that, I really wouldn’t fault this bike.”

This interview originally appeared in print in the final issue of RIDE Cycling Review (#75), published in February 2017.

All the ‘Bikes from the (Bright) Bunch’ interviews, click the links below:


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