Selle Italia C2 Gel Flow Saddle
Unlike most other saddles in the Selle Italia line-up, the C2 Gel Flow stands alone. There aren't alternate versions or options. The saddle has been made for a several years, and is answered the question many cyclists had? Why can't I get the width of the SLR, the flatter profile of the Flite with a thin gel layer, and a Flow channel? This doesn't mean that the C2 Gel Flow is a Franken-saddle, but a carefully developed model that integrates concepts and features of other saddles from the Italian saddlery.
The primary goal in developing the C2 Gel Flow was actually to make it distinct. The 135mm max and 70mm central zone width match that of the SLR, as does the 276mm length, but the flat profile provides a different saddle contact experience that is designed for those with narrow sit bone placement and the desire for more lift to ease pressure on the perineal soft tissue area. The Flow relief channel accentuates this focus and also brings air up under the rider, to help reduce heat and moisture that can cause friction. The cover is a perforated natural leather, which may not breathe as much as the synthetics, but wears well and has a great feel as it breaks in. The thin, but dense gel layer adds impact, contact, and vibration comfort. It isn't squishy or soft to the touch, but when your body weight rests on your sit bones. you can feel the difference. This gel covers the likely bone contact zones and extends around the Flow channel and onto the nose.
The shell is made from a nylon composite that is reasonably stiff, and maintain support for many long seasons on the bike. There is reinforcement around the cut-out, so you won't get premature flex or weakness in this area. The tubular, round Manganese rails keep the overall cost lower than titanium, yet are still strong and do an excellent job of attenuating road vibration. One note on the nose. The cover is sewn so that a central section has the grain running opposite of the rest of the cover. This was done to provide some holding friction if the rider moves to the nose of the saddle for more power. It looks a little busy, but it works quite well, and actually serves to make the nose cover stronger and more durable over time.
When it was released, the C2 Gel Flow quickly became a favorite for cyclocross and mountain biking, due to its minimalist shape and compact, but highly effective padding. Now gran fondo and gravel riders have re-discovered the versatility and comfort of the C2. It may not be the lightest saddle in the line-up- though competitive- but it's narrower width, flat profile, additional comfort, and sweet price point keep cyclists coming back for more.
Please Note: Due to manufacturing variances, saddle may be different than pictured.