Guru Photon Review by Dick Drummond

I have been selling Guru bikes for the past 4 years and quite pleased with the service that I have received even though I am a small volume dealer.  I have ridden several of their bikes that have passed through the shop.  I even had a custom Geneo built to my specs… which I sold to a customer at the end of that season.  I am a frame builder so a lot of my time is spent riding one of my own custom creations.  I Have sold several of the Photons over the past 2 years, however never had the opportunity to ride one in my size.  During a visit to my shop, Robert Pinazza of Guru started to inquire if I had even ridden the Photon.  We were talking about the success of another manufacturer that had sent me a frame for next to nothing and how I truly liked the ride quality.  Well this didn’t sit well with Robert so he threatened to send me his own personal frame that was coming out of the paint department the following week.  It just so happens that he rides a 58- a perfect fit for me.  I promised him if he sent it I would spend some time on it and give an honest impression.

Well,the bike showed up in my shop as a framest in the beginning of February in New Hampshire. The paint work is beautiful albeit a little on the feminine side (they are Canadian after all).  I ended up building the bike with an Ultegra electric group.  Reynolds carbon tubulars 66/46 up front.  Easton carbon crank, Carbon Revl brakes, and Pro logo Scratch pro saddle.  I didn’t spend much time in the setup knowing that I would have some time to adjust to the bike.

My first ride was about 37 degrees with some pretty rough pavement to really get an idea of the ride quality.  I was out for just under 3 hours with a group of knuckleheads so needless to say the bike was put through its paces.  After downloading the ride I realized that on the first ride I hit 53mph.  The bike never felt twitchy.  For me getting off the bike after 3 hrs I felt great so I had nailed the setup.  I definitely hit some pretty big holes in the road riding in a paceline at 30mph but it never upset the bike or me.  The BB stiffness was perhaps less than my Scott Addict but perhaps a tad stiffer than a Parlee Z5.  I would say that the ride quality is definitely smoother than the Addict.  The steering of the bike is exact.  I love the ride of the ENVE fork- it is my personal favorite.

When we finished the ride I had a big smile on my face.  Thinking back on the ride it was perhaps the climbing that really stood out.  The bike just seems to disappear under you whether you are out of the saddle or seated and that is saying a lot because I am not a small person at about 190lbs.  I am not perhaps the best tech reviewer nor claim to know all of the product out there.  I do however know that I am looking forward to the next ride on the PHOTON which will be in about 3hrs.  Since I have built this up I find myself trying different routes and different surfaces to test its capabilities.  Robert is going to personally have to come and pry the bike away from me because I do not want to give it back.
I will have more on the bike as I rack up some mileage– so far just 150 miles.

Dick Drummond
Drummond Custom Cycles
Enfield NH




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