When purchasing a road bike many people set themselves a budget. Cycling is, at least it appears to be, an expensive hobby; many people are put off because they presume you need to fork out thousands on a carbon-fiber, lightweight machine used by professionals like Cavendish, Contador et al. However, here is compiled a nice list of sets that will cost you under £1,000 - and believe it or not most of them are incredible bargains!
Hoy Sa Culobra 03 - £1,000
OK, so it only just makes its way onto this list, but if you can spare an extra pound it certainly is well worth it. The Sa Culobra is a lightweight aluminium frame that delivers extremely good handling when out on the road, so much so that it can be mistaken for a carbon-fiber ride. Designed with input from Sir Cris Hoy himself, emphasis on this bike was put on build quality and ride performance. A definite winner.
Boardman Road Team Carbon - £999
The Halford's exclusive Boardman range, named after Olympic champion Chris Boardman, are renowned for being excellent, value-for-money bikes. The Road Team Carbon is certainly no exception as it's one of the lowest priced carbon framed rides available. The main benefit of carbon over aluminium is that it weighs less, meaning tackling those tricky climbs is made that little bit easier.
Giant Defy 2 - £799
The Defy is Giant's endurance ride. This model is built using an Aluxx aluminium frameset and features a carbon fork. The ride is lightweight but doesn't hold back on quality, as it also comes with a Shimano Tiagra groupset and a massive 12-30 cassette, providing extra assistance getting up the hills.
Specialized Allez Sport C2 - £750
There are very few bikes available on the market that look as good as the Specialized Allez. Specialized have a history of making the best looking bikes and they certainly haven't failed with the 2014 edition of the stable, go-to ride. You get a smartly finished aluminium frame, with double btted tubes to save weight, finished with the smoothest welds you're likely to ever see and a neat carbon fork.
Specialized Dolce Sport EQ X3 - (price varies)
The Dolce Sport EQ X3 is Specialized female counterpart to the Allez Sport C2, although it doesn't directly relate to it's brother as the Allez is specifically orientated around racing, where the Dolce Sport is more of an all-rounder. Many of the components, such as the wheels, chainset and frame are the same as the Allez, however there are more gears on this model, making hill-climbing slightly less of a chore. There's no doubt that not only is this a perfect design for women, but also an ideal bike to do everything on.