Do you Conti GP 5000 or not?

When it comes to talking about road bikes, there are a few classic subjects that come up again and again. Disc brakes or not? 23 or 25 tyres? etc… If you’ve been following me for a while, you’ll already know that I love these debates! Will the Conti GP 4000 S II vs. GP5000 become one of them?

3.30am: who set the alarm? Oh yeah, that was me. It’s time to catch my flight to Tenerife and escape the dreary atmosphere of the south of France! The backpack is ready and the helmet is clipped to the handle. I check in just a few minutes early and, as usual, grab a “discutable” coffee on the way to the door. I really hope that the hotel booked by Continental has a barista on site.

Surprise, yes there is! But then, I wasn't invited to sit on my backside and sip coffee all day.

Continental is presenting a new and apparently revolutionary tyre and I’m one of the lucky gang of press, media, athletes and influencers with a front row seat. It’s also a great opportunity to meet up with people I haven’t seen for a long time. And to meet fellow Instagrammers whose work is really cool (the links are at the bottom of the page if you want to see them!). We’re actually testing the coffee while we wait for the big announcement.

Rumours are rife: square tyres here, tubeless there… I could certainly save a few watts if they opted for the second option!

Is the bike better than mine? Probably not, and Cannondale apparently still hasn’t solved its colour palette problems. But the tyres are there.

Oh the tyres! Compared to my GP4000S IIs, I've definitely saved watts.

The GP4000 S II is dead, long live the GP5000

The suspense doesn’t last long: the new baby is christened GP5000, a rather boring name, but it claims to offer less rolling resistance and more grip – a scientific mix of chemical ingredients does the magic here, but shhhh, it’s a secret – and finally, it’s virtually puncture-proof, a good point if you want to save a few grams and get rid of your saddle bag.

So much for the theory, and I’m sure the German engineers have done their job, but the only way to verify this is to put them (the tyres, of course) to the test on the slopes of El Teide – the famous (40 kilometre long!) local hump.

We test the tyres and make sure that the press and the athletes are reassured that there are still a few ‘influencers’ out there who are capable of cycling.

A big ring, a bit of sand on my borrowed Cannondale System Six – yeah really. My poor SCOTT FOIL stayed at home for this short trip, but its replacement is doing just fine as I fly along the ribbon of perfectly smooth tarmac towards the lunar landscape at the top of the volcano…

RIP the beautiful GP4000S II, the Germans have done the job... again!

GP5000, the best tyre in the world?

I stop for a few photos, admire the view and decide to come back very soon, then start what quickly turns into an orgasmic descent. No, I’m not exaggerating. The hairpins followed in quick succession, the speed increased on the Garmin, I leaned more and more into the bends and yet the wheels didn’t move. Conti GP5000s are safe, comfortable and have great grip.

RIP the beautiful GP4000S II, the Germans have done the job… again!

As promised, here’s a non-exhaustive list of people to find and some fellow Instagrammers whose work is really cool! Keep up the good work, guys! Looking forward to sharing another tour soon…

Content Partnership: Continental Tyres and Photo Credits: James Cheadle