Fizik Ares Saddle
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Fizik Antares Versus Saddle - Tested 9-2-2010

Fizik Antares Versus Saddle

  • 2 CM deep groove to provide relief for the "sensitive" areas
  • Cost: $179 MSRP
  • Natural Leather Seat Cover
  • Made in Italy
  • ICS bag compatible
  •  Weight: 212 grams (215 with ICS clip installed)

This is a review of the Fizik Antares Versus saddle. The Versus is a deviation from the standard Antares in that it offers a recessed groove to provide a little more clearance for the "choad" area.  Fizik has a long line of success with some fantastic saddles, notably: 

  • The Arione is extremely popular and uniquely longer (300mm) than most saddles. It comes stock on a lot of bikes and the pros seem to favor it. Unfortunately, this saddle causes numbness for me.
  • The Aliante is perhaps the most comfortable saddle ever made; I can't recommend it highly enough for folks who commute. And it will make any "superstiff" bike a lot more tolerable. However, because of it's flared rear end, you will have to move your seat down substantially lower.
  • The Antares, while not as comfortable as the Aliante, is an excellent triathlon saddle and provides a firmer ride than the Aliante that doesn't rob any power. While it has very thin padding, the "hammock" effect provides surprising amount of comfort. It's my favorite saddle now.
  • The Ares, purposefully made for time trials, with a shortened nose to be UCI compliant. 

How does it ride?
The Antares Versus is nearly identical to the Antares. But it features a 2cm deep groove down the center line. The ridges of the padding are firm and hit your sit bones noticeably. While the same profile as the regular Antares, these grooves are noticeably stiff and, in effect, raise the seat profile a bit. In fact, I had to lower my saddle a few centimeters to compensate. Riding was good but not great; the firm ridges were somewhat uncomfortable. The saddle probably needs some breaking in time.

I did notice some "air conditioning" in the crotch area but wasn't completely sold on the benefits of reduced perineum pressure.


The Specs
The Antares Versus is finished in striking dark grey leather with plastic "wings" for protection. It weighs 212 grams (215 with the ICS clip installed) and has the same dimensions of the Antares; 140 mm wide and 275mm long. However, the regular Antares is 35 grams lighter, at 177 grams.

The long rails offer 90mm of fore/aft movement, compared to 70mm in a Selle Italia SLR, which is great for flexible sizing.



The verdict
I'm not sold on the value of "cut outs" to prevent numbness in the nether region, but those who swear by it might want to have a look at this well built offering from Fizik. For me, the saddle was a bit too firm and I didn't fully appreciate the grooved out design.

Value: 3 stars
Overall: 3 stars

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