I want to first say that I have no clue about "vertically stiff and laterally compliant", or anything of that sort. I just know if I like the way a bike rides, and I like the way the Fezzari Fore CR5 rode.
Color scheme for 2012 - flat black and silver. I like!
I'm jumping ahead of myself. I need to first start off with how I got the bike.
Fezzari is a direct retailer. You can't find their bikes in your local bike shop, you can only get them on-line, or from their retail storefront if you happen to live in or near Utah (which I do).
Unlike some on-line bike retailers, Fezzari asks a few more questions than what frame size you want - 9 questions to be exact. For their 23-Point Custom Setup, they ask your age, riding style, gender, height, weight, inseam, shoulder width, arm length, and torso length. Once they have that information, they will adjust or swap out components until they have a "semi-custom" fit for you. They also can custom-spec components for you. Want Campgnolo instead of SRAM or Shimano? Reynolds carbon wheelset instead of Mavic Kysrium SL's? Just ask.
Since I am local, I went in to their retail store/headquarters and met with Tyler directly. He asked me some questions, took some measurements and put me on the bike on a trainer to see how the fit was. After a couple of adjustments, I was ready to roll.
How did it ride? Like I said at the start of this post, I really liked it. My scale said that the bike weighed 15.75 lbs without pedals (58 cm), which is more than 5 pounds lighter than my current bike. I know what physics says - it doesn't matter whether the weight difference comes from you or the bike, but I swear that the bike just "felt" faster.
I really can't say anything negative about my experience. Once I was out on the road, I found that I needed to rotate the bars down just a little from the position they were set at on the trainer, but that is not unusual.
The "retail" price for the CR5 spec'd with SRAM Red and Mavic Kysrium SL's is $7580.00, but that isn't the price you will pay for it. The other benefit with dealing directly with the manufacturer is they give you a lower price. Their price is $4799.00. If cost is a concern, you can get essentially the same frame (same mold as the CR5 but a unidirectional carbon weave on it instead of a 3K weave. They have the same strength properties, the difference is the 3K weave is lighter) and Dura Ace/Ultegra components for $2999 by looking at the Fore CR3.
Go to fezzari.com and check out the different models available. Along with their road bike line, they have a full range of mountain bikes that include full-suspension and a 29'er.
I tried everything I could think of to convince my wife that I needed this bike, but to no avail. Go check it out, and start working on your own plan to convince your significant other that your life wouldn't be complete without a Fezzari in your stable.
Part of the Pony Express trail near my house.