Cannondale Rize 3
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When hammering through tight corners, it was tough to believe the feathery aluminum Rize was sporting five inches of travel. “Accelerates like my XC racer,” said one tester, “but with all-mountain suspension.” “A trail bike for people who climb,” echoed another. True, we did find ourselves locking out the rear shock to eliminate bob on smooth sections. But that’s a small price for a bike that’s not a liability on big climbs or big descents. And what of Cannondale’s unique Lefty Max front shock? Scary as it looks, it rode as well as any fork we tested. $3,199; 27.3 lbs (medium); cannondale.com