Our Early Verdict
As the moniker suggests, the Selle Italia Flite Boost MVDP is a lightweight, performance-focused saddle designed with creative input from Mathieu van der Poel. It's one for the memorabilia collectors
- Lightweight properties
- Proven build quality and performance
- Exclusive, limited-edition
- Tasteful attention to detail
- White colourway prone to showing up scuffs and dirt
To coincide with the 105th running of the Ronde van Vlaanderen, Selle Italia created a limited-edition saddle with input from the 2020 race winner, Alpecin-Fenix's Mathieu van der Poel. The Dutchman has been using these saddles for the past five years as part of a sponsorship agreement between Selle Italia and Alpecin-Fenix and has taken quite a liking to one model in particular - the Flite Boost Kit Carbonio Superflow, a saddle he uses for both cyclo-cross and road racing. The Flite Boost model pictured here is unique in that it combines the lightweight chassis and performance attributes we've come to expect from the best road bike saddles with design cues and personal details as provided by Mathieu van der Poel.
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Design and aesthetics
The Selle Italia Flite Boost MVDP Edition saddle comes in a special box with a magnetic closure system. There's a lot of fanfare going on here but it's all very sophisticated and refined. The box doubles up as a display case as well as celebrates Van der Poel's cycling successes featuring his Palmares across road, mountain bike and cyclo-cross disciplines. There's also a fact file on the saddle outlining its specifications and full nomenclature which is a bit of a mouthful - Flite Boost Kit Carbonio Superflow.
Naturally, the saddle is predominantly white in appearance. While not the most practical colour when it comes to cycling - and this spans everything from kit and bikes to components - few can dispute the clinical precision white as a colour provides in spades. As an evangelist of this particular hue, Van der Poel is one of the very few professional cyclists who can properly pull it off, especially when it comes to items such as bib shorts and skinsuits.
It is a rather striking saddle. The bold and expressive black graphics are a contrasting addition to the design, which softens the dominating white to a certain extent. Like the model on which it is based the padding is set upon a carbon-fibre reinforced plastic base complete with TeXtreme carbon rails. Compared to the standard-issue Selle Italia Flite Boost, the MVDP Edition is almost a complete inversion but retains all the hallmark design features including the Boost central cutout, Selle Italia wordmark on the right flank and Flite logo on the nose.
There's no localised dimpling texture on this particular version. Instead, a flat Fibra-Tek sheath provides the canvas on which van der Poel applied his design - a simple-yet-effective MVDP graphic with letters arranged in a clockwise direction. A Mathieu van der Poel name and signature are set on opposite ends of the longitudinal cutout to further validate the saddle's credentials.
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The Flite Boost MVDP is available in one size only and is constructed according to the company's 'idmatch' L3 sizing philosophy with dimensions of 145 x 250mm - the large central channel is designed to improve comfort and pressure dissipation, ideally suited to cyclists with high pelvic rotation. It follows the same flat-top profile of the Flite range providing enough surface area for most ischial bone arrangements.
Weighing in spot on with the claimed 162g, the Flite Boost MVDP represents one of the lighter saddles on the market. Much of this comes down to the central cutout, liberal use of carbon composite in the base structure and TeXtreme fibres in the rails, the latter of which doubles up as an aesthetically pleasing design trait.
In terms of the Fibra-Tek sheath, the fine microfibre surface will provide decent enough traction when seated, even though it lacks the dimpled texture of the original Flite Boost saddle. Another thing to take into account is the maintenance required in keeping the saddle clean. Not only is white known for exacerbating scuff marks and the like, but it also's prone to becoming stained and discoloured from fall out and road grime.
- Object of desire: Mathieu Van der Poel's race suit
View the Flite Boost MVDP Edition saddle at Selle Italia
White isn't the most practical colour around, especially when it comes to touchpoints but the Selle Italia Flite Boost MVDP Edition is a beautifully designed saddle - minimalist yet striking in appearance. It's light too and features some of Selle Italia's novel attributes such as Boost and idmatch, the combination of which makes it a performance-enhanced option that still supplies some semblance of comfort.
This saddle, however, is best suited to the collector rather than racer based purely on its limited-edition nature. At £300 / $499.99 / €349.90, it's not particularly cheap either. In fact, you can pick up the exact same saddle sans the ornate MVDP garnishing for £25 / $15 / €35 less, in the form of the regular Selle Italia Flite Boost Kit Carbonio Superflow.
Tech Specs: Selle Italia Flite Boost MVDP Edition saddle
- RRP: £300 / $499.99 / €349.90
- Weight: 162g (actual)
- Dimensions: 145x250mm
- Rails: Carbon
- Shell: Carbon composite
- Colours: White
What is a hands on review?
'Hands on reviews' are a journalist's first impressions of a piece of kit based on spending some time with it. It may be just a few moments, or a few hours. The important thing is we have been able to play with it ourselves and can give you some sense of what it's like to use, even if it's only an embryonic view.
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