The Specialized S-Works Power carbon fibre saddle is truly a great saddle. It features carbon fibre rails (which will not fit on every seatpost clamp) and a very thin pad. It is designed for an aggressive riding position (or even time trial position) and if you are that kind of rider you'll love this saddle. If not, the width of its tail will grip against your quad and will make the ride less enjoyable.
Not a lot of padding
Carbon fibre rails won't fit all seatposts
When I saw the Specialized S-Works Power saddle for the first time, I was immediately caught by its design, and its clean and simple lines will not pass unnoticed. At first touch there isn't much padding and you can immediately guess this saddle was conceived for a serious rider in search of low weight and performance.
What also struck my attention was its width, which is available in two different sizes: 143 mm or 155. The two measures are both very wide, meaning that the saddle resembles a time trial or triathlon saddle. In fact, the Specialized S-Works Power saddle is specifically conceived for riders who prefer a more aggressive and forward position, or who spend a lot of time on the drops or their aero extension.
For this reason, if you ride in a more up-right position you might feel a bit of discomfort, and I personally felt the back part of it touching and clipping my back quad with each pedal stroke. Yet, as soon as I moved forward into a more racy position (or just moved into the aero extensions), that feeling disappeared and the saddle immediately felt very comfortable.
Watch: buyer's guide to road bike saddles
At first glance it might appear that the nose is rather thin compared to the back of the saddle. However, this is not really the case, and I think this appearance is due to the cut out middle of the saddle, which is there to increase blood flow and provide more comfort on long days out.
On both short and long rides, the Specialized S-Works Power saddle impresseda. Not only is this saddle very comfortable, but the grip the pad provides keeps you in position, meaning that you don't move or bounce when pedalling. This is perfect if you're more a race-minded kind of rider and you're searching for performance, but not so much if you prefer to move a bit in the saddle in order to stretch your legs and change position on long rides.
The Specialized S-Works Power saddle has an inner core of carbon fibre, and uses the same material for the ovals rails. The shape of the rails means that it is important to check if it will fit your seatpost before buying as you made need an adaptor to make it fit, as the oversized 7x9mm carbon rails are not compatible with seatposts equipped with side-load clamp for 7mm round rail (while the vertical-load clamp could actually be enough). The other downside of the one model I tested is the colour: white gets dirty pretty quickly, although of course it is also available in black.
For more details visit the Specialized website.
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