Gear Break: Another packed ‘Gear Break’ full of newly released cycling goods: Sportful Bodyfit Pro Light jersey, Campagnolo’s Ekar – The world’s lightest gravel groupset, new bikes from Look, Canyon & AURUM and new Fast shoes by Sidi.
SPORTFUL BodyFit Pro Light Jersey ($135 / £90 / €99.90)
If you like top level kit (like the kind worn by Peter Sagan and his BORA-hansgrohe team mates) then here’s a brand worth noting. Much better known in Europe than North America, Italy’s Sportful has been making technical athletic apparel for decades -(originally started for winter sports), but have for more years than you probably know, been building Pro Tour level kit for riders like Alberto Contador too.
The Bodyfit Pro Light jersey is a pro cut, structured light weight jersey designed to be both durable & functional at the highest level of warm weather competition & training. It’s made with lightweight poly-blend fabrics throughout for fit and excellent moisture management.
The minimalist design keeps it light, and also very comfortable as the fabric has enough stretch to maintain a sleek aero fit without binding, and reduces the need to add elastic to enhance fit.
The body is cut to fit properly around your pro-level torso (ie: it holds itself in place without riding up), and the waistband uses just a thin strip of silicon gripper to keep it in place. You can also see the honeycomb pattern woven into the fabric – it’s intentional and it works to pull moisture away from your body faster and make heat transfer work better, so you stay more comfortable.
Sleeves are long – like you expect in the pro tour – my size Medium tester sleeves reached to my elbows fora pro look, and also ensuring they stay in place while riding. There’s no way these are riding up your arms unless you push em there.
And here’s something you don’t see on every kit… made in the land known for the having world’s best tailors.
It comes in mens’ & womens’ versions, and is also available in custom for your club or team.
PEZ SEz: I’ve worn this jersey on several rides this summer and it’s actually become one of my favorites. The black design is smart – three different blacks combine for a fresh take on a stealth design. The body here is cut shorter than others – which is a preferred by pros and guys without long torsos (like me). The YKK zipper has teeth big enough to securely hold the front closed (or open) and I’m glad they didn’t choose one of those tiny micro zippers that take forever to actually hook up (you know the ones I mean). Three pockets in the back are fine for a phone, couple of bars, mini tools, and still have enough room left for a couple other items if you need.
● See more info at Sportful.com
Campagnolo: Finding the Spirit of Ekar
Ekar is not just the world’s lightest gravel groupset, it’s also reliable, durable and fast – and it was born tough.
Born on the mountain that gave the new groupset its name and with which it shares unmistakable and authentic characteristics. Cima Ekar is a charmingly diverse little gravel paradise in the Ventian PreAlps. It’s not the highest peak, it’s not the steepest climb, and it’s not a celebrated regular on the Corsa Rosa or the other big-name Italian bike races. But it embodies gravel riding at its very heart – it’s almost as if it was made for us to find, explore and adventure together, to test our skill, technique and fitness, and prove our passion, spirit and camaraderie. It’s a special cyclist’s playground with a character that’s simultaneously unique, epitomizing the appeal of Italian gravel, yet that shares elements of its makeup with all the countless unmade roads, broken tracks, natural trails, and swooping singletrack right around the world that we call ‘gravel’.
Ekar’s is a character that changes with the seasons, waxing and waning like the moon above and sometimes showing a secret sparkle like the stars. To get the best fun and your finest performance on the technical climbs, the thrilling descents and the undulating paths, you need confidence that you and your bike can tame it together in perfect harmony. You need a gear ratio range that’s not only wide, but also spaced to intuitively work with your cadence as you take the rough with the smooth. Mt Ekar is where we worked it out how our 13-speed system would deliver so well. Hit the roots, the ruts and trailway drop-offs and you’ll want the best chain security only a specially-designed 1x system can achieve. It’s on Mt Ekar that the countless test rides proved our groupset’s capabilities so it’s ready for your trails. Mix the sweat of sustained effort with the spring shower and you’ll be glad of Ekar’s ergonomically designed Ergopower controls, and as we approach ski season you’ll appreciate the new grip of the gravel-ready Ergopower levers. To ride fast of course you need to brake fast – with power on tap and the subtle modulation to keep you always feeling in control. Once again, it was our long days on Ekar that showed us the way.
At Ekar’s 1364m peak there’s a famous observatory. With its giant telescope pointing towards the heavens, it’s where science meets spirituality. And it’s under the shadow of this seat of learning that the Ekar gravel groupset found its spirit and its identity. We almost don’t want to tell you about Cima Ekar. We hesitated before we pressed the ‘publish’ button on this story. Part of us wants to keep it quiet, keep it under the radar, a discreet chapter in the Campagnolo gravel-riding heritage… maybe we weren’t so good at sharing when we were kids? But we’re beyond that now – now the Ekar Groupset is available, our pride has overtaken our privacy. Ekar is open to everyone, and we can show you the perfect way to get the best from this little gravel paradise.
● Discover Ekar HERE.
A new LOOK for flagship aero racing bike 795 BLADE RS
The iconic French cycling brand achieves a record lightweight frameset through a cutting edge carbon manufacturing process and carbon composition.
The French cycling brand LOOK has today unveiled the hotly anticipated 2021 upgrade to its flagship aero bike, the 795 BLADE RS. Already widely considered one of the best high performance road bikes on the market for its handling, comfort and aerodynamic qualities, LOOK has pushed the limits on the technology to create a record-weight ultralight frameset. The 795 BLADE RS is the fastest and most versatile road bike LOOK has ever designed.
DESIGNED & MANUFACTURED BY LOOK
The new 795 BLADE RS frameset weighs 300g less than its predecessor at just 1kg (size M, painted) but retains its rigidity and aero performance. The considerable reduction has been achieved with a new manufacturing process and a new carbon composition.
Higher modulus fibers than ever before are used on the 795 BLADE RS. 63% of High Modulus fibers are used in the new model compared with 32% in 2020, effectively doubling the proportion. This reduces the number of layers needed to create stiffness in the layup, minimizing the tube thickness and weight. Being ultra lightweight doesn’t compromise stiffness though, as LOOK has strategically placed Ultra High Modulus fibers in prime areas on the bike to optimize the frame strength.
The lightness of the 795 BLADE RS was also achieved through the application of Extended Polystyrene (EPS) technology to the frame. Rather than having one single mold for each frame size, the EPS process requires two molds: one for the outer shape of the frame and one for the inner. A layer of carbon fiber fabric is then draped over a hard polystyrene form before being removed, which eliminates any folds, porosities and areas of weakness in the carbon. More costly than the traditional way of manufacturing frames, LOOK uses EPS only for their most premium bike models, like the 765 GRAVEL RS.
Carbon has always been the material of choice for LOOK bikes since their inception in the cycling world over 30 years ago, and within their own factories LOOK has developed enviable industry know-how in carbon fiber technologies that are demonstrated through this launch today.
DESIGNED FOR PERFORMANCE
From its frame to its components, the 795 BLADE RS is unquestionably LOOK’s highest-performing road bike yet. Put through its paces in wind-tunnel testing, LOOK has added the latest innovations on its top spec version – like the SRAM RED ETAP AXS DISC groupset and fast CORIMA 47mm WS Black DX wheelset – so that every rider can achieve those all-important marginal gains.
Even down to the seastays, LOOK has thought about performance. Their ‘3S Design’ seatstays are curved and don’t have a bridge, which allows flex when under force transmitted by the rear hub. This means that the rear wheel will not lose contact with the road, resulting in better power transfer and increased traction as well as comfort.
To go fast you need fast braking power too: that’s why all complete bikes are fitted with disc brakes as standard, although the 795 BLADE RS can be bought as a rim brake frameset-only. Disc brakes add greater sense of security and control on downhills and through corners – but they also give the advantage of allowing wider rims and tires to be mounted onto the bike. The 795 BLADE RS accepts tires with a width of up to 30mm. The greater the tire width, the lower the pressure and the better the efficiency of the bike. The tire absorbs the roughness of the road surface – maintaining speed – and increases the contact area between the tire and the ground – improving traction. This is true on dry roads, and becomes an even more important factor when the going gets wet.
DESIGNED FOR VERSATILITY
The best bit of owning a bike is the riding, so LOOK has designed the 795 BLADE RS with easy maintenance and adjustability so more time can be spent where it matters – on the roads.
Both the rim and disc brake framesets are compatible with mechanical or electronic groupsets. Stem height adjustment is made easy thanks to spacers with specific cable routing openings in the rear, with six stem sizes to choose from between 80 to 130mm. An aero cockpit with integrated cable routing makes for a tidy front of the bike and optimized aerodynamics. On the complete brake bikes, brake housings are combined with the derailleur cables and routed through the stem and headset.
The 795 BLADE RS bottom bracket is built to pressfit BB386 standards, compatible with both 24mm axles and 30 mm axles. An aluminum sleeve fitted inside the frame ensures a perfect alignment of the bottom bracket and optimized pressfit tolerances.
Each fully-built 795 BLADE RS comes with a TOKEN NINJA BB386 threaded bottom bracket installed and dedicated tools. The threaded body of the TOKEN PRODUCTS Ninja bottom bracket is made of aluminum whilst the pressfit areas are made from a combination of PA+FIBRE. This setup ensures the bottom bracket is robust, perfectly aligned and spins smoothly without friction. It is designed as a comprehensive, high-performance unit that offers riders the fastest, quietest and most reliable components possible.
DESIGNED FOR ALL RIDERS
For those wanting the performance of a 795 BLADE RS but at an affordable price, LOOK has made their in-house design and manufacturing accessible to more cyclists with the 795 BLADE range. Comprising four disc brake bikes fitted with Shimano components, LOOK AEROPOST 2 carbon seatposts and some featuring LOOK’s own R38 D wheelset, the 795 BLADE offers a quick and responsive ride.
Fred Caron, Bike Manager at LOOK said “The 795 BLADE RS is the pinnacle of our road bike collection, and today we are really proud to be launching it from our headquarters in France. Our design and manufacturing teams here are constantly innovating and pushing the boundaries of industry technology, and today it has paid off as we unveil our new 795 BLADE RS. The result is a pure racing bike: aero, light, fast and compliant and one hell of a ride!”
Available in LOOK official retailers worldwide today, the 795 BLADE RS DISC bike in a SRAM Red Etap AXS build is $11,000 and can also be bought frameset only for $4,000. The 795 BLADE DISC bike is available in three specifications (Shimano Ultegra Di12, Shimano Ultegra and Shimano 105) and starts from $3,250.
For more information, please visit lookcycle.com.
Alberto Contador and Ivan Basso create AURUM – A bike brand Born from Experience
All details are now released surrounding their first road bike – the AURUM Magma
Cycling legends Alberto Contador and Ivan Basso today announce the launch of AURUM – their own high-performance bike brand – Born from Experience and built on passion and attention to detail. The first model is available now – Magma.
With more than 30 years of combined experience in the pro peloton and multiple Grand Tour wins, Contador and Basso spent their careers in the best teams, riding the best equipment available. However, that equipment was always selected by the team and sponsors for them, and that left a desire, a question in their minds, of how it would be if they had the freedom to choose, to design the bike of their dreams.
To create their own bike brand is a desire they have had for many years, they planned and discussed it until the time was right for them to go ahead and create something that was 100% authentic to their dream – and that time is now. AURUM is the brand, and Magma is the first model, the ultimate racing road bike – fast everywhere – created, designed and tested by Alberto and Ivan.
When designing and developing Magma, the goal was to go a level higher than the top racing road bikes in the market, to tick all the boxes for the highest performance: Aerodynamics, Stiffness, Comfort, Weight, Handling. Alberto and Ivan wanted Magma to be the ultimate racing road bike, the best performer in any situation no matter what the route profile and conditions.
BORN FROM EXPERIENCE
Following their retirement from professional racing, Contador and Basso dreamed about creating AURUM. To help them realize that dream, they immersed themselves in the bike industry and built a team of like-minded, experienced professionals. AURUM would be a brand Born from Experience, the experience of Alberto and Ivan as riders, and the experience of a skilled team of designers and engineers to make the highest performance bike on the market. Contador and Basso have driven the project in every way since the beginning, through passionate discussions on handling and geometry, detailing on frame shape and features, to endless testing of the frame prototypes. Alberto and Ivan have poured all of their experience into the project to ensure the bike handles perfectly on the road. This is what makes Magma so special – the exceptional level of fine-tuned riding performance and attention to detail that has been pursued by Contador and Basso is like no other.
The name AURUM reflects the passionate character of the brand and the Latin connection between Alberto and Ivan, born in Italy and Spain. AURUM literally means gold; it is the material of winners, the most precious medal and spot on the podium, reflecting both Contador and Basso’s passionate desire for success – whether in racing or in business – and their belief that Magma will set the gold standard for high end road bikes.
Magma has been designed and developed to be the fastest racing bicycle in the market. In addition to a well-balanced mix of stiffness, comfort, light weight and aerodynamics, a balanced racing geometry was a key element in the search for speed.
With the experience of racing at the highest level in the world’s top ProTour teams, and still to this day supporting racing teams through the Fundacion Alberto Contador, AURUM knows the importance of a correct fit on the bike for the maximum performance and comfort of the cyclist. For this reason, Magma was designed around standard sized cockpit parts to allow fitting flexibility and easy part changes.
AURUM offers the Magma in six frame sizes to cover a wide spectrum of rider heights, estimated between 152 and 196cm tall.
Racing to win the Tour de France, Giro d’Italia and Vuelta a España, the mountains are often a decisive battleground for the GC. But as much as it is important that Magma is a top performer in a stiffness test (crucial for high wattage out-of-the-saddle attacks) and with reduced weight, aerodynamics play a big role.
Magma has been designed using advanced CFD software and wind tunnel tested to help AURUM to fine-tune the computer generated tube shapes to real life conditions.
A subtle but important aero feature of Magma is the Head Tunnel, how the headtube channels the brake lines inside the frame, directly from the handlebars, an aero efficient solution chosen for being both light and easy for cockpit assembly and adjustments.
MADE WITHOUT COMPROMISES
A no holds barred selection of carbon fiber materials and molding techniques has driven the development of Magma. High strength steel molds allow higher molding pressures than usual, squeezing out more resin from the fiber. Latex covered foam mandrels create a clean and crumple-free interior.
Working together with industry-leading engineers and the most advanced and experienced carbon fiber manufacturing, AURUM developed ECT: Experience Carbon Technology, a sophisticated mix of carbon fiber grades and layup schedules, the right fibers in the right places, for an ideal balance between weight, stiffness and comfort.
The result is a frame weighing just 805g for a naked size 54, stiff yet compliant in nature, agile and reactive, stable and strong, precise, aerodynamically sophisticated and above all – fast.
The ECT concept extends to all frame sizes. Each Magma frame size has been designed and developed individually, with a specifically designed carbon fiber layup schedule and carbon fiber grades.
Speaking on the day of AURUM’s announcement, multiple Grand Tour winner Alberto Contador said: “I’ve been eagerly awaiting this launch ever since Ivan and I began designing Magma. This very special frameset has been the focus of our efforts for such a long time. It’s something that we’re both truly personally invested in – we’ve spent so many hours riding it, fine-tuning it and thinking about how to make it better than all the sensational bikes we rode during our careers. Magma is the foundation for the AURUM brand, and it’s a foundation we’re hoping to build upon with more models in the near future.”
Ivan Basso, twice winner of the Giro d’Italia, said: “AURUM is a source of great pride for me. Together with Alberto and the whole AURUM team, we have created a beautiful bike. As Sport Manager at Kometa Xstra Cycling Team, I’ve seen our riders put the bike through its paces in training and I’ve only heard positive comments.”
Iñigo Gisbert, AURUM’s Design Director said: “The Magma project has been exciting and demanding in equal parts. We are exhilarated with the final product. Working with Alberto and Ivan is fantastic for all the knowledge and experience they bring. Their drive for perfection, whether that is riding performance or frame quality and finish, and their relentless will to test samples has resulted in an excellent product to sit at the top of any serious rider’s wish list.”
AURUM Magma – SPECIFICATIONS:
● AURUM Magma ECT frameset (Experience Carbon Technology)
● CFD optimized aero fork and front triangle
● FEA optimized frame tube dimensions and shape for every size
● 12mm stealth ultralight thru-axles
● Flat mount disc brake only
● Internal cable routing
● Tapered 1-1/8” to 1-3/8” headset with Stainless Steel angular bearings
● BB386Evo bottom bracket
● 27.2mm round seat post with custom hidden wedge
● Electronic and mechanical drivetrain compatible
● 6 frame sizes: 50, 52, 54,56, 58, 61
● UCI approved, ISO-4210 safety standard approved
Magma is available in Glacial Blue and Carbon Black and can be purchased via aurumbikes.com a frameset for €4099 or as a complete bike starting at €9799. When purchasing a complete bike, customers will be able to select frame color, size, group set and components (Shimano/Enve, Shimano/Lightweight or SRAM/Zipp).
● For more information about AURUM and its exclusive Magma frame, visit aurumbikes.com.
New Look for 2021 a Fresh Start for Canyon’s Ultimate Climbing Bike
It comes as no surprise that performance continues to be the central topic of any road cycling discussion. And with good reason: At the end of the day, it all comes down to performance: Winning or losing. Success or failure. Triumph or disappointment. And that is not only the case for professional cyclists like Alejandro Valverde, Kasia Niewiadoma, Nairo Quintana, or Lourdes Oyarbide. Their victories may be in the limelight, but that doesn’t mean they’re more worthy. They share the same path, the same relentless hunt for greater performance. It is what unites each and every road cycling enthusiast who shares that ambition of challenging themselves and pushing their limits. Of getting the most out of themselves and their equipment.
For road cyclists who expect nothing but the best of themselves and their bike, for whom KOM, QOM and PB are more than just letters, the Ultimate represents Canyon’s answer to an important decision: It unites light weight, stiffness, and comfort at such a high level that pros and amateurs around the world place their trust in this bike on their hunt for their personal victories and triumphs.
For 2021, the Ultimate is back with all of its tried and tested strengths plus a fresh look: After the successful launch of the Canyon Factory Racing models (CFR), the Ultimate CF SL, CF SL Disc, and CF SLX Disc platforms are lined up for 29 September. Newcomers to the world of climbing can once again discover the Ultimate with the CF SL 7, which offers rim brakes and a mechanical Shimano 105 groupset for €1,699*. The wide range of disk brake models start with the Ultimate CF SL 7 Disc and the women-specific Ultimate CF SL 7 WMN Disk for €2,199*, both featuring Shimano 105 components as well. Weighing in at only 820 grams (size M), the SLX frame at the heart of the Ultimate range is available in several configurations ranging from €4,999* (CF SLX 8 Disk eTap) to €7,199* (CF SLX 9 Disk eTap). *Prices valid for eurozone countries.
With Light Blue, True Grey, Rainbow White, and Non Blue, the 2021 season brings a range of new and exciting colourways that underline the classic style and characteristics of the Ultimate. Fans of the ultimate understatement will continue to opt for the popular Stealth design. All 15 unisex and WMN models of the Ultimate CF are available exclusively at canyon.com starting 29 September.
● As a pioneering direct sales brand, Canyon products are exclusively available online at www.canyon.com.
Sidi Fast: Even Faster, Even More Efficient
Fast is the newcomer at Sidi’s, stiffer and light, yet zippier as ever.
Sidi presents the new Fast – concentrated performance and technology that ensure stiffness, softness and flexibility, which are the characteristics of Treviso’s company, with an easy yet accurate and improved tightening. In this new model, sturdiness and traction have also been tested to deliver at best during the most hectic actions, a last-minute sprint or a swift attack.
If we look at the shoe more closely, we find the Carbon Composite 20 sole made with carbon fiber and nylon that results into lightness and stiffness. Nylon also keeps the technical qualities of the sole unchanged over time. To further facilitate a proper cleat-fastening, the central part is graduated with a millimeter scale.
The robust TECNO-3 mechanism, patented by Sidi, allows you to close the shoe along its entire length, perfectly adjusting the upper to the shape of your foot and providing a customized fit. A boa dial, placed laterally, ensures an even faster and simpler fit. The reliable cable in our Tecno-3 mechanism is made with double material to guarantee greater sturdiness, and it allows an easy and even faster tightening.
Like almost all the models of Sidi collections, Fast is also made with Microtech Microfiber, a light, breathable, waterproof and, most importantly, eco-friendly material, which is produced with a special “Water-Tech” solvent-free treatment.
This drastically decreases the environmental footprint and the harmful emissions in the air and in the manufacturing plant. Stability and transfer power are guaranteed by the reinforced heel-cup in polyurethane that stabilizes and supports the heel and decreases its potential slip.
True to its name, Sidi Fast has been created for speed: a classic design and a comfortable fit to be ready for your daily rides in a flash.
See the full Sidi range HERE.
Note: PezCyclingNews ask that you contact the manufacturers before using any products you see here. Only the manufacturer can provide accurate and complete information on proper / safe use, handling, maintenance and or installation of products as well as any conditional information or product limitations.