The Masi I purchased the other day for a secondary, beat-around bike has been confined to my fluid trainer since day one. This Monday I took it out for its first road ride. If you haven’t read the earlier post about this bike, it’s fairly simple: aluminum frame with a carbon fork, 105 group, compact crank, and bottom tier Mavic hoops. Weird, but I was nervous about the weight and the handling compared to my main squeeze. Surprising it turned out to be a very nice ride. First of all, I really like the look of this bike. It is a deep gray with white and orange accents. The emblems and pin striping is painted on, not stickers. The first thing that I immediately noticed when putting on my arm warmers after a few miles into the ride was that bike has excellence balance, having a lot to do with the weight, but the smoothness of bike didn’t leave me gripping the handlebars and fighting the bike. The compact crank is a bit of a bugger for me. I have a standard crank on my Cervelo, and it will take getting use to the gearing. The jury is still out on which I prefer: yeah, climbing is better . . . flat sprints and acceleration not so much. I have toyed with the idea of putting a compact on the Cervelo, but I’ve heard good and bad both ways. The Masi Alare also has a bit of a weight problem (Chris Farley reference), bumping 21 pounds. I only look at it as something to help me get stronger when training. Overall, I would easily recommend this bike for a somewhat better than entry level bike or a trainer. At $600 dollars, I feel that I made a great purchase.