Those tan walls brighten up any gray day

The capellini that you’re used to seeing on road bikes are quickly falling out of fashion. Even the pros, known for their loyalty to skinny and fast at all costs have been spotted chowing down on wider and wider rubber. The average punter (you and I and that other guy) can benefit from the many advantages of wider tires like the tasty Vittoria Corsas: more grip, more comfort, and as the pros are proving, even more speed.

Like grooves on your favourite record

Lean ’em over gently to hear them sing

In keeping with the trends, these Corsas start as beautiful tagliatelle before becoming a more robust wide spaghettoni when fully al dente on the rim. The 28c tires here inflate to almost 30mm wide when on reasonably wide Stan’s Grail disc rims. I only mention the width as clearance may be an issue in some frames. This has the added spice of graphene in the recipe, which makes in theory makes the tire more hard wearing, although we’ll have to put a few more kilometres in to be sure.

These come up a bit wider than labelled

The Corsas sport the textures of a modern classic – tan wall (actually a ‘natural’ sidewall finish according to Vittoria) , track inspired tread, skimming along that fine balance between too heavy or not robust enough for daily use. Like all good pasta, they look best pristine lightly coated in olive oil or splattered with some rich sauce. Do your best to maintain one state or the other.

They look far better once worn in

Like climbing on air, the high volume aids a floating feel when the road points up

I’ve been running between 50-55psi and the road feel has been excellent. The feel off-road is what you’d expect from a road slick on gravel, although I would run a few psi more in favour of robustness over comfort. There’s a brilliant moment when cornering downhill when the rubber, its tread and the tarmac combine to produce grip that you can literally hear. I really wish these came in a tubeless casing in 28c (or wider even, if nothing else discs provide us with space).

Look where you want to go, and these tires will guide you there

As is custom nowadays, the “modern” part of a “modern classic” does mean Nonna no longer makes these by hand, but these come from a more industrialised setting. To be fair, the tires are still made by hand, just in a slightly different setting. The benefits of economics at scale mean the you get excellent tires made consistently for a fair price, but perhaps some of the romance of an Italian hand-sewn tire is lost.

Wet road, no troubles

But, if you were after that, you’d be the sort of girl/guy who’d choose to ride aged tubs on your vintage steel frame anyway.