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If you're looking to duck into the heady, complex world of carbon wheelsets, get ready to think of nothing more than internal rim width, rim depth, and brake track materials from now until when you choose a wheelset. Narrowing the field of polished racing hoops down to just one wheelset takes discipline, but the Zipp 202 Firecrest Carbon Clincher Road Wheel just might have the power to make the job a bit easier.
With its carbon fiber rims shaped to a depth of just 32mm, the 202 climbs with the nimbleness of your loyal mutt for the first few minutes of a run, conserving no energy and ferrying you up steep walls with unabashed pleasure. Though it's undoubtedly a climbing wheel at heart, the 202 still slices through the air on straightaways and rolling terrain as well, and it does so without the unpredictable nature of deep dish rims that can be easily thrown off course by a strong wind. Use it throughout a summer of training miles and road races then transition it over to the mud and dirt as a capable 'cross racing wheelset.
To deliver such versatility, Zipp chose a wide, 24.62mm brake track that would allow you to run a range of tire widths without any side bulges, giving you the freedom to let the wheels spin knowing they'll corner with stability. For added reassurance, Zipp used heat-resistant resin to mold the brake track to give the wheels stopping power rivaling that of alloy hoops. Instead of starting your descent with a grimace and a prayer, tuck into your drops and enjoy the speed knowing your brakes will work when called upon. And for the times you're trying to gain, rather than control, speed, Zipp's signature Aerodynamic Boundary Layer Control (ABLC) dimpled surfacing on the rims will work to smooth airflow in a range of real road conditions, cutting drag and saving you watts.
Though the rims are spectacular, you'll also owe thanks to Zipp's 77 and 177 hubs, used for the front and rear respectively, for maintaining ride quality by keeping the wheels spinning reliably. Zipp upped the hubs' bearing protection for 2016, providing a beefier barrier against grit and water for improved longevity without weighing the hubs down, and includes aerodynamically-minded quick-release skewers with the wheelset that have been newly updated this year as well. Once you get the 202, set the wheelset up using the included Zipp Tangente Platinum Pro Evo brake pads to be sure you can take full advantage of the brake track's stopping power.
- Carbon fiber
- 32mm rim depth
- 24.62mm brake track width
- Zipp 77/177 hubs
- Delivered with: Tangente Platinum Pro Evo brake pads, Zipp Integrated Valve Extender with valve-core wrench, rim tape, and a quick-release skewer.
- Item #ZIP002N