What's Cool In Road Cycling

Tour Tech: TTT Time Machines

This year’s Time Trial rigs are old looking, new looking and something in between. We got up close and personal with the rigs and they pretty much fell into two groups thanks to the UCI doing away with the futuristic look that TT bikes seemed to be going. In this corner we have the profiled Carbon, and in that corner good old metal. Here’s a look at tomorrow’s Team Time machines…

Cannondale go the way of plain looking frame sets, as their seat tube is un touched. They roll with the standard Mavic rear disk and front deep profiled rig. Single bottle cage from Elite is a standard at the tour (as Elite supply the bottles I think) and one of the more popular saddles, the Fizik Aliente.

Bianchi go a similar route, but it’s interesting that the down tube doesn’t appear to have the 4-1 ratio (depth to width) to be a true aerodynamic tube (Cannondale have a deeper section on the down tube). They do put what amounts to a slight dent in the seat tube to snug the rear wheel up, and they also go with the standard Mavic wheel choice, single Elite cage, Saddle from San Marco and bars from ITM.

Cervelo is and isn’t new to the game (Ja Ja’s Look TT bike in a prior tour was a P-3 like these) and shows up with a rear end that must have the UCI scratching their purist heads wondering “How do vee baan zeez!?” These are great bikes, very aero down tube, a seat tube that goe one step past pretty much everything, and coat it with just plain cool colors. They opt for a Zipp wheel set up and plain Jane parts.

The Mail gets delivered on full Carbon. Trek spend a poop load of tunnel time to get the rigs right, and they look the part. Like the Carbon rigs from Pinarello, they have the advantage of being able to create perfect shapes while staying light and with bottom brackets that are rock solid. All tubes are shaped with the carbon bikes we saw (didn’t get to see if Time had anything on offer) The Hed front tri spoke does the job, and Bontrager supplies the back wheel. Standard postal components throughout.

A little bit of a close eye says the Zipp rear wheel and the Bontrager look very (very, very) similar. Notice the standard even pie slice shaped carbon panels on the Mavic’s, then look at the nautilus spiral carbon panels on the Bontrager and Zipp… Hmmm…

One of the better looking rear wheels go to the Campy guys and their Ghibli. Hats are always off to ONCE in the gear department. Super slick Giant Carbon in team Black and gold / yellow, and Team paint for the back door. I’ll take two of these please!

Enjoy the pictures, as you won’t get this good a look at em in the TTT as they streak past you at 40 MPH…

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