By Rick Schultz
-Stainless Steel rails: $90.00
-Titanium rails: $130.00
Source: Bike shops, Websites
Features: New saddle shape
Summary: 256 x 158mm
VELO makes saddles, bar tape (road bikes), and MTB grips.
For their saddles, they offer 3 product lines; Angel, Senso, and Prevail.
Four colors are available: White, Black, Black with Red trim, and Orange / Yellow.
Also, the Angel and the Senso have cutouts, the Prevail appears to be the same saddle as the Angel but without a cutout.
VELO sent me the Angel Rise+ to review. This saddle comes in one width – 158mm and is offered with 2 rail options – titanium or stainless steel. I chose this saddle to review since it had the largest cutout of their offerings.
Installing the saddle into exactly the same as my current Selle SMP VT30C, I took a couple of rides. The only slight change I needed to make was to tilt the nose slightly. Now, much more comfortable.
The saddle felt quite different compared to the VT30C I have been riding. Anatomically, everyone is built differently, meaning that one saddle shape might be perfect for one rider but wrong for another. Even though the VT30C and Angel are essentially the same length and width, the difference is the shape. The VT30C is very rounded from side-to-side matching the rounded shape of the pelvis so that the pressure of the rider’s weight is distributed throughout the entire saddle including the sit bones and pubic rami. The Angel is shaped much flatter across the back so that majority of the rider’s weight is concentrated on the sit bones.
For a person who rides with more pelvic rotation, the VT30C is a better choice. The Angel is much better for cyclists who ride with a more vertical pelvis.
I tried riding the way I normally do and started going numb. In the picture comparing the VT30C and Angel, it is easy to see where the cutout stops forward on the Angel but continues on the VT30C. Changing my riding position to more upright, the numbness went away.
If I Were To Redesign The Angel
In the 2 photos below, the top photo shows the current Angel. The second photo is what I would change. I think this would be a much better saddle – especially for me. You get the idea.
*Good Or Bad?
As mentioned above, good for one might be bad for another. Talking with bike fitting customers, most have struggled with finding the right saddle. Even if a saddle’s shape is slightly off from their anatomy, the saddle will not be comfortable. Compounding the issue is the rider’s pelvic position.
Based on your experience, you will know what width and shape will work for you. If you rotate your pelvis, then a larger cutout might be needed.
I think this is a good saddle, especially for the money. It’s well made and has a good basic shape, flat at the rear for maximum support, but it doesn’t match my anatomy or riding position as well as a saddle with a larger cutout. In conclusion, as with any other saddle, it will be perfect for some but not for others and if you ride more vertically oriented, this would be a great choice for your next saddle.
Coach Rick Schultz is an avid cyclist who trains, races and coaches in Southern California. Rick is an engineer by trade, and in addition to being a coach, he’s a bike fitter and prolific product reviewer. He’s the author of Stretching & Core Strengthening for the Cyclist in the RBR eBookstore. Check his product reviews website, www.biketestreviews.com, and his coaching site, www.bikefitnesscoaching.com. Click to read Rick’s full bio.