I wish I could ride a bike as hard as Geoffroy Dussault, but I don’t think his company, Garneau, would appreciate that. “I was the kind of guy who broke a few bicycles when I was racing,” said the Garneau project manager. “I have a tendency to push a little too hard on a bicycle. If it passes the Geoffroy test, that’s a big one.” The Geoffroy test for the Garneau Gennix D1 included 8,000 km in Quebec, plus 4,000 more in Europe as Dussault took on the Transcontinental Race this past summer. The bike passed the test.
I first saw the D1 at this past year’s Interbike. Garneau’s Gennix line already had its pure race bike (Gennix R), aero road (Gennix A) and endurance (Gennix E). The company was missing a road bike with disc brakes. While the existing lineup of Gennix bikes are built on proprietary frames, the Gennix D is based on a stock frame from a Garneau supplier. Still, Dussault and his colleague Alexandre Chicoine wanted changes to the stock frame. “This started as more of an endurance disc platform,” he said. “We needed more stiffness and performance out of it. We didn’t want to just say it was comfortable. There was some lack of stiffness, so we got the bottom bracket and back stiffened by using different layups. We also reworked the frame to have proper clearance for 28c tires.”
The Gennix D1’s geometry is not too far off from the race-oriented R1. The new bike handles well. It’s not quick in the corners, but it will stick the turn you set it on. It’s definitely more lively than many endurance bikes. When you put power into the Shimano Ultegra cranks (with 52/36-tooth rings), the Gennix D1 doesn’t get going with a race-bike snap. With few pedal strokes, however, it and the Easton eA90 SL wheels wind up nicely. Then, you can cruise, on and on.
While comfort might not be a focus of this bike, its ride is not harsh at all. The 27.2-mm-diameter seatpost can offer a bit of flex depending on how much of it is exposed. The 25c wide tires that came on my test bike not only offered a solid contact patch, but soaked up many bumps in the road. The 28c tires I put on later, were even better. The Shimano RS805 flat-mount hydraulic disc-brake calipers managed my speed with precision, slowing me down quickly in the dry and wet.
I’m definitely impressed with the Gennix D1. It’s a good-looking, if unassuming, machine. But it impressed me on the roads (and dirt and grass), game for whatever I threw at it. With that kind of attitude, you’ll always have fun out on the bike.