Have been a Brooks saddle fan for years, the love continues! Western bike works really hard, I had some logistics that I needed help with. WBW really strives to keep their customers. Happy in NW MONTANA.
I had the R1 on my road bike and bought the R3 for my gravel bike. Used it on my ride across NY,390 miles. It was comfortable the entire ride. This was a "B" grade purchase, not sure if that is the right terminology. The discount was super. It appeared to be new. No scratches or any indication it had be used. The price was great.
Like all saddles, each one, and its relationship with any individual backside is totally subjective. I've been through a fair handful of saddles for the gravel bike, ultimately landing here with the Selle Novus Boost Gravel Tech. I've not been on any centuries or close yet, but have done a few 30-40 mile rides along with plenty of shorter adventures. It's comfortable, and on the longer rides I've done, have gone a long way in helping me eliminate that dreaded perineal numbness. Whether that holds true on really long rides is kinda beyond what I was hoping for anyway, so it's helped out in one major area I was hoping this would help with. The padding isn't overdone, but with a chamois, it does the trick. The seat is light enough and balances form and function really well. My only semi hangup is how short it is. Great if getting rowdy and not wanting the seat to hang up, but it does provide a slightly more limited surface area to move around on when wanting to shift to get comfortable on long climbs, or the like. That said, it has been easy to overlook considering all else it brings to my table. Big fan.
My first full sized bike in the 1960s (I am a dinosaur) had a Brooks Flyer Saddle, and every bike since until the 1990s when alternate synthetic saddles surfaced. I tried the one that came with my full suspension Gary Fisher Sugar 3+ for about 10 years, then decided to switch back to a Brooks Flyer when the saddle developed a rough spot after I took a digger. There was no comparison and no switching back. Even on a full suspension top of the line mountain bike, I could tell the difference. You can also buff damage off of leather, something you can't do on a synthetic saddle. I now regret using the other saddle for so long.
Lesson learned, I just put one on my new Trek Farley fat bike, and I actually read and still remember the simple directions that came with this new saddle. Brooks mentions a break in period, after which comfort improves. I have not noticed this. The Brooks Flyer Saddle improved my ride the day I put it on, and 1000 miles later, I can't tell the difference between new and broken in. Maybe you just can't improve the quality of a Brooks Flyer right out of the box. Maybe I truly am just a hard ass.