Saturday, September 1, 2007
Pariba Tires Tribute
I started buying Pariba tires when I started riding because they were always on sale. They went on with ease-some complained too easily and had a fantastic ride. Like all nice handmade tires, they didn't last forever and they had the chronic problems of strings from the casing unwinding off the sidewall, but even still they ruled and at the price you could get them for why complain? Handmade Euro rubber for less than 20 bucks??? Even cheaper if you could handle some ugly colors(maybe ideas like purple tires might explain why they are gone). I even ran some of the Pro-Courses in tan cause the price/performance factor outweighed the fugly factor-although they weren't any worse than the Michelin green that sprang up everywhere around this time. The Paris-Roubaix model was my default tire for a couple years, the ride was as godd as Vittoria's but for half the price. Just like Vittoria's they lost the their tread profile pretty fast, but they weren't as succeptable to cuts as the Vittorias (or Hutchinsons for that matter which seem to be cut magnets. Paribas opted for a tread rather than "dual compound" which also might have contributed to there falling out of favor.
At some point they got bought by Vredestien and got folded into that company. At about the same time, the supply of them began to dry up. Some research online looking for old tire photos seems to indicate the Paribas are still available in Europe, but they look to be budget/entry level models. Damn. I did see a Cyclingnews.com review that you can check out can't tell how old it is, but I remember those tires.
The Paris Roubaix's had a much subtler tread pattern.
I have ridden a lot of tires since then (Hutchinson,Vittoria,Veloflex)-and most of them are good to great, but these I really miss.