This post updates my experience with two Brooks England Team Pro saddles. Â It reflects approximately four months of riding with them. Â One the saddles is fitted to my Look 555 and the other one is fitted to my Kinesis Racelight Granfondo Ltd. Â At the time of writing the saddle on the Look 555 has done about 1,407 km and the one on the Kinesis approximately 3,916 km, so a total of about 5,323 km of road testing.
Both bikes are drop bar styles with the Look 555Â Â being the more aggressive of the two. Â The Team Pro is a racing saddle and hence works for me on these two bikes. Â That said, the one fitted to the Kinesis has taken longer to break-in and I suspect it is in part due to the slightly incorrect position. Â I have run out of rail with this saddle and hence cannot put it back quite far enough; probably 3 to 5 mm forward of my desired position. Both saddles are comfortable but the one on the Kinesis has, as expected moulded more to my body. The Look’s saddle still has the round feel to it.
What do you get? The Team Pro comes in a suitably designed “shoe box” which contains the saddle, an adjusting spanner (hang on to this as they are a special spanner) and a rain cover. Â I don’t bother with the rain cover as the bikes get kept out of the rain unless being ridden and then my body covers the saddle okay. Â On tour I just use a plastic shopping bag if I need to protect the saddle over night.
Breaking in has proven to be interesting. I had read of stories of the Team Pro been one of the toughest saddles in the Brook’s range to break-in and the one fitted to the Kinesis has lived up to that reputation for sure. It is only in the last 500 km or so has it started to feel more comfortable. Â It came pretty close to finding a new home! Â In contrast the saddle fitted to the Look has been pretty much all okay from Day One. I have wondered if the different riding position is the key here. The Kinesis is a more relaxed riding position. Â I am not 100% sure on this but I am pretty sure that I didn’t apply Brooks Proofide to at least one of the saddles possibly both, so that may have helped with the break-in, but I cannot confirm. Â During the break-in period my weight went from 103 kg to 91 kg.
Comfort: Now that the both saddles have been broken in I am pretty much happy with the saddles and I am okay with completing 200 plus kilometres on either saddle. Â As I indicated one saddle took longer to break-in, but I am happy I preserved with the saddle as it has come good know and it feels good to ride. Â I really don’t notice the saddle now on my daily commutes (up to 67 km) and the same applies to my training rides (up to 100 km).
Plus and Minuses: The big plus with Brooks saddles and the Team Pro is no different is comfort, pure and simple and oh their timeliness lines. Â On the downside is there weight, but then frankly I like to enjoy my rides and if a bit of extra weight makes the difference then so be it. I cannot see the point of having a sore bum just to save a few grams.
On a more serious note, the two other negatives are the rails which do restrict the amount of fore and aft adjustment and the lack of saddle bag loops. Â The saddle bag loops are a pain if you want to fit the likes of a Carradice saddle bag, but otherwise may not be a concern. The limited ability to move the saddle back or forth is a bigger concern and something to keep in mind. Â You may need to get a seatpost with more offset for example.
Creaking: Brook’s saddles in my experience (two Team Professionals; a B17 and a B67 Flyer) can develop a creak which can be a pain to get rid off. Again this may be a personal thing as some suggest this is part of the character of a Brook’s saddle, whereas for me, it is an annoyance. I haven’t come up with sustainable fix, so open to suggestions!
In summary I would buy a Brook’s again and highly recommend them for commuters and Audax riders. Racers may find them a bit to heavy 🙂