What's Cool In Road Cycling

Readers’ Rig: Franco Latigo RS1-D

We love a repeat customer here on Readers’ Rigs and today it’s Nick from California who last featured here with a fairly standard Cannondale but today he shows us his new rig, a full custom build from Franco Latigo decked out with Campagnolo gears and Bora One wheels.

Name: Nick Fernandez
Location: Camarillo, CA, USA
Bike: Franco Latigo RS1-D (https://francobicycles.com/pages/latigo-rs1-d)
Groupset: Campagnolo H11 + Super Record
Wheels: Campagnolo Bora One 35 Disc
Pedals: Speedplay Zero Ti
Saddle: Fabric Scoop Ultimate
Other: Enve cockpit
Weight: 17lbs (7.71107kg)

When did you buy it?
August 2018.

What made you choose this bike?
I had been on a Cannondale Supersix Evo HM Disc (featured here on Readers’ Rigs) and don’t get me wrong, it’s a fast bike. However, I never really felt at-home on it. It’s a 56c but I really needed a 55c (doesn’t exist) – I wanted a bike that fit me for who I am (long legs, short torso, etc.). Franco Bicycles provides custom geometry options based on a professional fit and they were able to dial in tube lengths to ensure that I was getting a bike designed around me. Knowing Franco uses top-of-the-line MJ Series carbon on their Italian hand-made bikes I anticipated that the ride quality was going to improve and it was something that I noticed on my first ride just leaving my driveway.

Lastly, Franco offers custom paint options. This is a bike built around me so it only made sense it should also aesthetically represent me. Working with them I was able to incorporate a personal touch into the top tube: the initials of my 3 daughters. This meant a lot to me as it was something to look down at and be reminded of why I ride my bike and who is at home waiting for me.

What modifications/additions have you done?
I haven’t added anything since its original configuration.

What components are you running?
I went with the Campagnolo EPS H11 components again with this build The 11-29 cassette offers enough range and the shifting quality of the EPS product is top notch – it always works the same way each shift. I really enjoy the Super Record hoods on the H11 system (a bit higher than other brands).

Like all of my other builds, I also stuck with what was familiar to me for the cockpit. I know that the Enve products provide comfort that makes long rides less painful and that the Fabric scoop (on all of my bikes) saddle treats my seat bone with the upmost respect.

How many miles/kilometers do you do a year?
5500mi in 2018 (8880km).

What do you love about this bike?
I love the custom geometry and the quality of the carbon. Both of which were noticeable almost immediately and it’s hard to put a price on a bike that I know fits me and wasn’t built for the masses. The personal touch to the top tube paint was a brilliant final touch to my dream build.

Favorite riding area?
It’s easy to hate (poor road quality), but I really enjoy Yerba Buena in the Santa Monica Mountains. There is a reason world tour teams come to Southern California and the SMM to train; it’s hard to beat!

Favorite riding experience on your bike?
Recently upgrading to Cat 4 and continuing a journey on the racing circuit I was collateral damage in a crash during a criterium. Luckily, nothing was broken on me but my bike looked shattered – bars were sideways, helmet shattered, rear shifter assembly was in pieces. It was the last lap and the last turn of my Cat 5 upgrade race, I needed to finish. I got up and ran across the finish line to secure my exodus from Cat 5 all bloody and bruised, but I remember only being worried about my Latigo. Was it broken? How much will it cost to fix? Are there issues with the frame I can’t see? As a cyclist I don’t think I’m the first/only one to worry about their bike before themselves, maybe that’s what makes us different from the normal population.

The frame was fine (nothing broken there either) and the only part needing to be replaced was the shifter assembly (and helmet!). What a relief! The experience stuck with me and something I feed off of and what makes it my (sadistic?) favorite experience. It has shaped me for the better I believe.

Future upgrades?
Really interested to try what seems to be cycling’s best kept secret in the Hunt 30 carbon aero disc wheel set. Also really interested in the H12 Super Record cranks and the possible weight savings, but not completely sold on the 12 speed road scene yet so it’d most likely just be a crank upgrade.

Last words?
Franco’s attention to detail is bar none. The creation of my RS1-D started as a conversation with the Franco team answering questions like why do you ride? where do you ride? how do you ride? etc. They really got to know me as an individual to secure a design that was truly ground-up built for me. Pitching the paint idea and personal touch I wanted was a stretch goal in my mind but there was no problem and the response was unexpected and very appreciated. Franco doesn’t just sell you a bike and instead they build a relationship with you that lasts long past the delivery date of your new purchase. Check them out here: https://francobicycles.com/

Thanks to Nick for sharing his ride with us. Got a bike that makes you smile? Well how about sharing it with fellow PEZ fans and getting it featured in Readers’ Rigs so we can all smile! Send us a Readers’ Rigs submission direct to [email protected] and your bike could be featured in all its glory here on the pages of PEZ.

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