Bontrager have announced they are to provide road helmets to the new Leopard-Trek team, in addition to the previously announced wheels, cockpit components and accessories. The squad will use the new Oracle lid, which was unveiled at their Mallorca training camp.
The Oracle is designed to keep step with current ultra-light, ultra-ventilated road benchmarks, with carbon fiber reinforcement to maximize its strength-to-weight ratio. The new lid will make its ProTeam racing debut at the Santos Tour Down Under.
“We chose Bontrager because they have an unwavering devotion to innovation,” said Ricardo Scheidecker, Leopard-Trek’s technical manager. “When you hold the Oracle in your hands you get the feeling that they've put a lot of thought into incorporating all the demands that top-level athletes will make – weight, ventilation and a cool design – but didn't sacrifice any of the essential aspects that a helmet has to include – security and durability.”
One of the key design objectives for the Oracle helmet, according to Trek, was to make it low profile. “No one wants to look like they have a bucket on their head,” said Al Clark, Bontrager’s helmet product manager. Another objective was superior ventilation. Clark points to two key innovations that, he believes, allow the Oracle to meet these goals.
The first is a CFD (Computational Fluid Dynamics) aided design that optimizes vent shape and placement for maximum cooling – including the critical front center channel vent. The second is the helmet’s in-molded carbon fiber skeleton, which provides the structural integrity and load dispersal capabilities necessary to create the biggest possible vents in the closest-fitting, low-profile shell design. “Our expertise in carbon fiber and our experience in analyzing air flow with various other products gave us considerable advantages when designing the Oracle,” said Clark.
Additional features include internal channeling to manage airflow over the head, a patented ‘Headmaster’ cage-type fit system with a one-hand adjustment, moisture-wicking AgION antimicrobial pads and a built-in brow band that helps draw air over the forehead for maximal cooling. Oracle helmets will be available from Bontrager dealers this spring in three sizes and five colors, including a replica Leopard-Trek edition.
Liquigas-Cannondale Pro-Cycling Team and Sugoi unveil 2011 team kit
The Liquigas-Cannondale Pro-Cycling team have announced that Sugoi will supply their apparel for the 2011 season and have unveiled the new kit. This is Sugoi’s first foray into sponsorship of an international professional road cycling team.
Liquigas-Cannondale training in Sardinia in their new Sugoi kits
The company call it the "logical next step for Sugoi’s continued investment in pro-cycling, following the company’s recent move into a new location that features a state-of-the-art manufacturing facility for custom cycling apparel".
Sugoi will provide a complete range of technical apparel to the team, including jerseys, bib shorts, vests, arm warmers, gloves and caps. The clothing was designed in close consultation with team riders. Replica kits will be available.
“We worked closely with the Sugoi design teams to develop, test and re-test the gear to ensure that it will provide a competitive advantage,” said Ivan Basso of Team Liquigas-Cannondale. “When you’re halfway through a three-week race every little thing matters, especially the gear that you wear each day.”
Technological highlights of the clothing include Sugoi’s RC Pro Chamois and four-way stretch side panels to mold to the body’s contours. The team will also be supplied with aerodynamically designed skin suits.
The retail version of the kit, named The Liquigas-Cannondale Powered by Sugoi kit, will be available both as an authentic kit and as a replica in black. It'll be available from 1 April in shops that carry Sugoi or Cannondale and online at sugoi.com.