There’s a certain allure to Felt’s dark, low-slung F2 racing bike. It has the same savagely stiff UHC Advanced + TeXtreme carbon construction as its big brother, the F1, but a more purposeful Ultegra Di2 build — including, to our delight, sprint shift buttons — that can take a beating in the weekly crit series. We couldn’t imagine a better bike for that kind of riding.
Disclaimer: This bike is stiff, really stiff. It delivered eye-popping numbers in our lab. As such, it tends to ride a little rough on anything less than fresh blacktop. If you can handle that, you’ll find the trade-off is worthwhile for pure speed.
The F2’s 73-degree head tube angle and 405-millimeter chain stays encourage you to dive into corners and sprint out of them, making the F2 is a brute with a 12-25-tooth cassette. Its Fulcrum Racing 5 wheels are a bit clunky, but these complaints reflect the F2’s single-minded purpose: racing. If that’s your game, you’ll want the tight cluster for precise cadence in the bunch. If your jerseys look like Swiss cheese from the many holes of safety pins that have affixed bib numbers, you’ll just use those Fulcrums for training rides. The F2 is a pretty good deal, giving racers a little spare cash to buy some tubulars for the weekends.
Its one concession to all-around riding is a semi-compact 36/52-tooth chainring combination. On one hand, that risks a spin-out when combined with a 12-tooth small cog out back. However, it’s nice to have a little more gear range, and thanks to Shimano’s brilliant crank spider bolt pattern, you can swap in a 39/53-tooth anytime, tough guy.
Component highlights: Shimano Ultegra Di2 drivetrain with 52/36 crankset and 12-25 cassette; Shimano Ultegra brakes; Fulcrum Racing 5 wheelset