19, 22, or 23c for the track?

Looking to buy a pair of Vittoria Pista Evos and am stumped on what size to buy, they come in 19, 22, and 23c. I am currently running 22c on my old wheelset but am guessing the 19c’s will be faster on the new wheelset?

Is it just a matter of personal preference or will the 19c actually be faster than the 23c?

Don’t road guys use 19’s to be faster? I’d presume it’s the same on th boards.

Road guys uses gears to be faster

I had an old roadie that ran 18 or 19c (can’t exactly remember, but they were bloody thin!) and you could really notice the difference between those and 23’s.

I’ll be interested to find the answer to this, as I’m looking for a set for my track bike too and was wondering if 19c clinchers are useful.


I’ve heard that ultra-narrow tyres can have problems with slipping down the boards as they don’t squish out as much as 23mm tyres. As an engineer, I’m sceptical about that. I’d expect contact patch width to be purely a function of inflation pressure (and load on the wheel), not tyre width. But then I don’t have enough experience on the boards to say for certain whether there’s a difference in grip.

Another consideration would be what your rims are built for. I’d be checking whether their manufacturer lists compatible tyre sizes, since I can imagine a tyre so narrow that its sides aren’t snug against the rim could break its glue and come off. But then I don’t have enough (any) experience with tubulars to say for certain.

One word… aerodynamics

… and clenbuterol

Hmm, must be misinformed.
I thought for some reason that the smaller tires just had like, less rolling resistance or something.
Bleh, my opinion’s invalid via aerospok anyways.

Noone uses 19s on the road anymore. Harsh ride =/= fast. A 25mm Michelin Pro Race is faster and more comfortable than a 23mm.

Aero: hardly. Rider position is orders of magnitude more important.

Contact patch: will be longer on a narrower tyre, which results in more casing hysteresis loss.

Rolling resistance: Does decrease with increased pressure, but gains are minor at the top end.

On the track, sure, you can run 150+ psi on 19s and it’s ok, the timber surface is fine. Just don’t ride Harrison St on them.

The difference in your times between 19 + 22mm will be quite small.

Thanks Blakey

Just to clarify, my aero comment was for your request re: track tyres. Essentially the argument goes skinny tyre = lower frontal area and typically lower rotational weight. In support of this you have wind tunnel tests showing that 19mm tyres are more aero than larger ones, but only for certain wheels. On the other hand, manufacturers also make wheels designed for wider tyres and these (funnily enough) have better results with those bigger tyres. Overall, I think that Blakey’s other points probably outweigh the minute and (depending on your wheels) possibly non-existent aero advantage of skinnier tyres.


I have 19’s on my rain bike, lol

Are you suicidal?! :wink:

I have 28s on my roadie at the moment and it definitely makes the long rides a bit more plush. I do notice the extra resistance though, particularly when climbing, and on some of the harsher roads out the back of Brisbane they feel like you’re pushing through sand. I’m eying off a set of Michelin Pro3 Races or Schwalbe Ultremos for the new wheelset (25s).

I’ve got a set of Michelin Pro3 Race 20s on order at the moment for the track (it’s a concrete velodrome). Will be interesting to see how they compare to the 25s I’ve been running.

Yeeah man, totes.
They’re pretty much perished, the came off one of the roadie guy’s bikes, a customer at the lbs, they saved them for me for skiddddzzzz
And i put them on that bike because tires are expensive, and I never ride in the rain anyway.

i run a 20c conti supersonic on the wooden track, compared to a 23 conti gator i feel it to be much faster and smoother.
psi is always pumped up to the max, i dont want to be loosing any momentum.


23s are for comfort, who gives a shit about comfort on the track, put a rolls or something on if your bottom is sensitive to small bumps