For most triathletes, the road bike is their day-to-day machine. Whether it’s for training, commuting or just riding for fun, a road bike is far more versatile than a triathlon bike. However, a triathlon bike offers greater benefits when it comes to race performance.
On the bike leg, about 75-80% of the drag comes from the rider, so it’s vital to get into the most aerodynamic position possible. Tri bikes are designed to get streamlined by positioning the rider's torso level with the ground. Manufacturers give tri bikes a steeper seat angle (angle between seat tube and an imaginary straight line where the top tube meets the seat tube) than a road bike. Essentially, they move the saddle further forward in relation to the bottom bracket.
Frame angles A road bike has slacker frame angles than a tri bike and a higher front end. This gives the rider a more upright ride position until the rider moves down to the drops.
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