Trek have developed a reputation for delivering fresh, custom painted bikes to their top riders competing in high-profile events and for this year's Tour de France, general classification favorite Andy Schleck and his brother Fränk will both toe the start line aboard Luxembourg-themed Madone 6.9 SSLs in homage to their home country.
Schleck's Tour de France Madone is notably more serious looking than the standard team issue bike, swapping the usual lighter hues for a much darker black background. Light blue stripes adorn the main triangle and seatpost mast, blue Trek logos are tacked on to the inner surfaces of the chainstays and fork blades, and even the headset cone and single headset spacer are covered in Leopard Trek's trademark shade.
Trek have also fashioned their own "modern interpretation" of Luxembourg's iconic lions on the seat tube, further embellished with a pair of crossed hammers that are said to signify the brothers' "tenacious work ethic". While the frame itself is made in Waterloo, Wisconsin, the top tube proudly points out that the rider was "Made in Luxembourg".
The crest on the seat tube incorporates Trek's modern take on the traditional lions of Luxembourg while the hammers signify the Schleck brothers' "tenacious work ethic"
Somewhat surprisingly, Trek will offer this special paint scheme to us lesser mortals through their Project One custom program effective immediately – though it's perhaps unlikely that buyers can opt for the "Andy – Made in Luxembourg" tagline found on Schleck's bike.
Most of the equipment on Schleck's bike mirrors the setup he used when we saw his bike earlier this year, including the Shimano Dura-Ace Di2 group, Bontrager alloy Race Lite VR bar and ultra-long Race XXX Lite carbon stem, and the traditionally shaped and firmly padded Bontrager saddle – which is now an official addition to the company catalog under the 'Team Issue' moniker.
This particular variant has a standard Dura-Ace crankset instead of an SRM power meter, though, and team mechanics have also added a satellite shifter to help the lanky climber maintain his rhythm when holding onto the bar tops. And after last year's 'Chaingate' debacle – plus a few more incidents since then supposedly attributed to mismatched chainring combos – there's finally a custom etched AceCo K-Edge chain watcher installed, too.
Andy Schleck doesn't have the best track record as far as chain retention is concerned so it's no surprise to see an AceCo K-Edge chain watcher mounted here
Schleck will make use of yet another set of new Bontrager carbon fiber tubular wheels after the debut of the 50mm-deep set back in January. This latest Aeolus 3.0 model retains the carbon fiber hubs and generous rim width but ratchets down to a lighter 36mm depth for climbing.
Combined with the feathery Speedplay Zero Nanogram pedals, it makes sense then that Schleck's bike is substantially lighter than the last time we profiled it. Total weight is now a just barely UCI-legal 6.86kg (15.12lb), including a pair of Bontrager Race X Lite carbon cages and a Bontrager Node 1 computer.
- Frame: Trek Madone 6.9 SSL, 58cm H1
- Fork: Bontrager Race XXX Lite, tapered 1-1/8 to 1-1/2in
- Headset: Cane Creek integrated
- Stem: Bontrager Race XXX Lite, 140mm x -17°
- Handlebar: Bontrager Race Lite VR, 42cm (c-c)
- Tape: Bontrager cork
- Front brake: Shimano Dura-Ace BR-7900 w/ Bontrager cork pads
- Rear brake: Shimano Dura-Ace BR-7900 w/ Bontrager cork pads
- Brake levers: Shimano Dura-Ace Di2 STI Dual Control ST-7970
- Front derailleur: Shimano Dura-Ace Di2 FD-7970-F
- Rear derailleur: Shimano Dura-Ace Di2 RD-7970
- Shift levers: Shimano Dura-Ace Di2 STI Dual Control ST-7970
- Cassette: Shimano Dura-Ace CS-7900, 11-25T
- Chain: Shimano Dura-Ace CN-7900
- Crankset: Shimano Dura-Ace FC-7900, 172.5mm, 53/39T
- Bottom bracket: Enduro XD-15 integrated for Trek BB90
- Pedals: Speedplay Zero Nanogram
- Wheelset: Bontrager Aeolus 3.0 tubular
- Front tire: Schwalbe Ultremo HT tubular, 23mm
- Rear tire: Schwalbe Ultremo HT tubular, 23mm
- Saddle: Bontrager Team Issue
- Seatpost: Bontrager Race XXX Lite seatmast cap
- Bottle cages: Bontrager Race X Lite
- Computer: Bontrager Node 1
- Other accessories: Bontrager DuoTrap integrated speed/cadence sensor, Bontrager Race X Lite bottle cages (2)
- Rider's height: 1.86m (6ft 1in)
- Rider's weight: 68kg (150lb)
- Saddle height, from BB (c-t): 782mm
- Saddle setback: 115mm
- Seat tube length, c-c: 502mm
- Tip of saddle nose to C of bars (next to stem): 635mm
- Saddle-to-bar drop (vertical): 137mm
- Head tube length: 160mm
- Top tube length: 573mm (horizontal)
- Total bicycle weight: 6.86kg (15.12lb)