The spec gives a similar confidence - Shimano's Ultegra level hydraulics are predictable and smooth. As usual, I found them lacking the kind of modulation that I'd really like to have, but if that's the cost of Shimano's insane reliability, I have no problem with it.
The wheels are Bontrager's own Affinity line-up, recently introduced to fill the 700c-disc-wheels-shaped hole in their lineup until just last year. They feel stable and have stayed true even after I've bashed them through some rocky corners. Their axle interchangeability for Thru or QR is a nice and convenient touch, and I definitely noticed the added stiffness in the front end thanks to the 15mm thru axle fork.
This brings me to my first major issue with the Crockett. Everything about it screams singletrack. The frame transfers power in an admirable fashion, but the ride isn't punishing, it's fast, smooth, stable, it ticks all the right boxes. So what the hell is going on with that quick release in the rear end?
Considering all of this, it is with a heavy heart that I have to give the Crockett 3/5 stars. I love the frame, and it's one of the most fun drop-bar bikes I've ever ridden, but unfortunately its value is lacking for what should be a high-end build. With any luck, next year the folks at Trek will wisen up and sell a Crockett fit for its athlete designer, 11 time National 'Cross Champion Katie Compton.
Trek Crockett 9