Let’s face it, new brake pads are never going to be the most exciting news. They are neither sexy nor eye catching. In fact, you tend to only notice your pads when they stop working – and then you notice them instantly. Reynold’s new for 2014 Cryo-Blue Power pads change that. These are pads you can’t help but notice on every ride.
Visually the big difference is the doubling of the slots on the pad. While previous iterations had three slots, the 2014 pads have increased to six. The slots help with cooling as well as water dissipation. The pads themselves also have a 44% larger braking surface versus the previous iteration.
All of these changes lead to a claimed 33% increase in stopping power in dry conditions and an even more impressive 42% increase in wet conditions. But as always, the question is whether this will translate in the real world.
The answer is a resounding yes – we rode the new Power pads (on an Aero 72/90 set) back-to-back with the original Cryo-Blues and immediately felt a difference. These pads bite hard enough to almost be jarring. In fact, when racing with them, we almost locked up on a downhill stretch due to muscle memory from the original pair.
These pads really shine in the wet. And when we say “wet,” we mean really wet as in “monsooning” rain—not just spring showers. While we were not overwhelmed with the original’s stopping prowess is the rain, the Cryo-Blues were up to the task. As we would expect, braking power drops off the wetter everything gets, but we never felt the loss of stopping power was enough to cause concern.
We have no problem stating that if you are currently riding Reynolds carbon rims you need to order a set of these. They really are that good. And if you are shopping for a new set of wheels, these updated pads take Reynolds braking quality to another level. No, brake pads aren’t sexy, but standing on the podium—rather than dusting yourself off from the ground—most certainly is. And these are the pads that can help give you that last bit of an advantage to get there.