On the surface, tubular tires look pretty much like clinchers. But people who have experienced both types of tires will agree that bicycle performance differs with both tire types.
Tubular tires are purely designed for racing. So, it isn’t surprising that they are generally lighter, safer, and more durable than clinchers.
While they may not be as common as clinchers, you will find that a good number of triathletes actually prefer them.
If you have recently taken an interest in riding with tubular tires, and you need recommendations for tires to ride a triathlon with, we’ve got you.
Below, we review 6 of the best tubular tires for triathlons to buy in 2022.
Michelin Power Competition Front or Rear Racing Bike Tire
The Michelin Power Competition Front or Rear Racing Bike Tire is handmade and of high quality.
You can expect less wind resistance while riding with it on your wheels. You won’t have to put in as much work while pedaling with reduced wind resistance. So, you can conserve more energy for the rest of the race.
Besides energy conservation, reduced wind resistance may help your bike move faster than bikes with similar capabilities. Of course, since triathlon is a race, you can make do with the extra speed.
The Michelin Power Competition Front or Rear Racing Bike Tire does not fall short on the durability front. It uses latex inner tubing, a cotton and aramid casing, and a cross-laid crown over the tread. So, overall, its structure is dense and resistant to damage.
You can get the Michelin Power Competition Front or Rear Racing Bike Tire in 3 sizes: 23-622, 25-622, and 28-622. Many triathletes use 23mm tires, and if you fall in that category, you won’t have any issue finding the size.
If perhaps you would rather ride at lower PSI with a wider tire, you have two choices: 25mm and 28mm.
- It is durable.
- Since it is handmade, wind resistance is minimal.
- It offers superior grip on wet and dry roads.
- You can get it in one of 3 sizes.
- The tire uses slick tread. So, when used in low temperatures, it may shear.
Continental Sprinter Tubular Road Bicycle Tire with Black Chili
The standout feature of the Continental Sprinter Tubular Road Bicycle Tire with Black Chili is the Black Chili. The Black Chili is a compound unique to Continental Tires. It raises grip by up to a third and minimizes rolling resistance by almost the same.
You can go a bit faster, thanks to the lower rolling resistance. Also, with a higher grip, you get better control and more safety while riding.
Like the Michelin Power Competition Front or Rear Racing Bike Tire, the Continental Sprinter Tubular Road Bicycle Tire with Black Chili is handmade. So, you can expect lower wind resistance with it on your bike. With lower wind resistance, you can put in less energy while pedaling and go farther in the triathlon.
The Continental Sprinter Tubular Road Bicycle Tire with Black Chili is also durable. Made with sturdy nylon fabric strengthened with Kevlar and a 4-layer polyamide casing, expect top-notch resistance to cuts and punctures.
- Handmade, so wind resistance is lower.
- The Black Chili feature offers a superior grip with minimal rolling resistance. So, the tires are relatively faster.
- It is durable.
- It is pretty safe, thanks to the sturdy build and superior grip.
- It is available in only one size: 22-622.
SCHWALBE One HT Black Tubular Tire
The SCHWALBE One HT Black Tubular Tire stands out on the durability front, thanks to its Onestar Triple Compound. The Onestar Triple compound offers a flexible base that promotes durability and wet grip while reducing rolling resistance.
So, with the SCHWALBE One HT Black Tubular Tire, you may just go a bit faster. But beyond that, your traction will not drop significantly even on wet surfaces. So, you should be able to ride with precise control. Besides, the diamond tread pattern further makes for improved grip.
The Onestar Triple compound makes the SCHWALBE One HT Black Tubular Tire resistant to puncture. Hence, the durability.
Weighing in at 260 grams, you get the feeling that this 22-622 tubular tire could be lighter. Nonetheless, it still offers top performances.
- It is durable – resists puncture.
- Excellent grip, even on wet surfaces.
- Since it is not handmade, the wind resistance may not be as low as the handmade tires in the review.
Continental Competition Tubular Road Tire
The Continental Competition Tubular Road Tire offers durability and performance. It features the Continental Vectran technology, a liquid crystal polymer that allows this tire to keep punctures at a minimum.
Besides the resistance to punctures, the Continental Competition Tubular Road Tire has a three-ply build. This reduces the likelihood of cuts and keeps the tire in top shape for long.
The Continental Competition Tubular Road Tire is handmade. This means less wind resistance. Of course, you won’t have to pedal as hard with lower wind resistance. If you don’t pedal too hard, you can reserve your energy for the later parts of the race.
The grip of the Continental Competition Tubular Road Tire is pretty excellent. The rubber tire features a silica compound that enhances traction even on slick surfaces.
- It grips well even on slick surfaces, thanks to the silica compound in the rubber.
- Highly durable – three-ply build that resists punctures and cuts.
- Handmade – so wind resistance should not be high.
- The pressure can fade quickly.
Vittoria Rubino Pro G2.0 Tire – Tubular
Beyond racing with it in a triathlon, the Vittoria Rubino Pro G2.0 Tire – Tubular works well as a training tire. So, you can get a whole lot of use out of this product.
Apart from that, the Vittoria Rubino Pro G2.0 Tire – Tubular grips pretty well, even on wet surfaces. The impressive grip of this tire is, in part, due to the Graphene 3C compound technology.
The Graphene 3C technology allows graphene molecules to fill the space between rubber molecules. This interaction makes the tire more durable and resistant to punctures. With these, you can use the tires for longer.
You can get the Vittoria Rubino Pro G2.0 Tire – Tubular in two sizes: 25-622 and 28-622. So, if you wanted something smaller, this may not be the product for you.
- The Graphene 3C compound enhances the durability and grip of this tire.
- You can use it as a training tire and racing tire.
- Limited number of tire sizes.
Vittoria Corsa Bicycle Tyre
One standout feature of the Vittoria Corsa Bicycle Tyre is the thread-per-inch (TPI) count. With a TPI of 320, you should get a smooth ride with the Vittoria Corsa Bicycle Tyre, even on bumpy paths.
Besides an impressive TPI, the overall durability of this product is excellent. The core-spun-k reinforced casing and graphene 2.0 technology ensure this tire has a long mileage. Beyond that, this combo helps the tire resist punctures and cuts. So, you wouldn’t readily get a flat tire with the Vittoria Corsa Bicycle Tyre.
As with the graphene 3C technology, the graphene 2.0 technology of the Vittoria Corsa Bicycle Tyre improves grip, even on wet surfaces. But beyond that, the graphene 2.0 compound in the Vittoria Corsa Bicycle Tyre promotes speed.
- Remarkably durable.
- The graphene 2.0 compound enhances speed.
- The grip is okay, even on wet tracks.
- High TPI, so rides are smooth even on bumpy tracks.
- Only available in one size: 25-622.