First to race on full Dura-Ace Di2 R9150: Froome at Herald Sun Tour

Team Sky rider first to use Shimano's complete groupset

Originally published on Cyclingnews

Chris Froome made his season debut at the Herald Sun Tour this week, and while the event’s defending champion got off to an underwhelming start, he did become the first WorldTour rider to compete with a full Shimano Dura-Ace Di2 R9150 groupset.

Froome's Shimano Dura-Ace 9150 rear derailleur
Froome's Shimano Dura-Ace 9150 rear derailleur

While Froome did not participate in the Tour Down Under, opting for a training block instead, his Sky teammates debuted the new Pinarello Dogma F10 at the WorldTour opener. The F10s were equipped with parts of the latest Shimano Dura-Ace Di2 R9150 groupsets, but due to a shortage of chainrings and wheelsets, the majority of the team used Dura-Ace 9070 cranks and 9000 series wheels.

At the Herald Sun Tour, Chris Froome’s Pinarello has the full R9150 groupset, Osymmetric chainrings and R9100 series wheels, making him the first rider to compete with the full complement of the new component group.

Froome is equipped with 52/36t prototype Osymmetric chainrings
Froome is equipped with 52/36t prototype Osymmetric chainrings

The non-Shimano 52-36 chainrings look similar to the Osymmetric chainrings Froome usually races on. However, they feature a unique step-down design. Froome opts for 175mm cranks with a Stages power meter on the left crank. The bike also has the latest R9100 series pedals from Shimano.

The new Shimano Dura-Ace 9100 wheels
The new Shimano Dura-Ace 9100 wheels

Danny Van Poppel was the first high-profile rider on the R9100 wheels, placing fourth on the 60mm hoops at the final stage of the Tour Down under. The new wheels come in 24mm, 40mm and 60mm rim depths, with the 60mm quick-release carbon road tubular wheelset weighing in at a claimed 1,400g. Team Sky has also been racing the R9100 wheels this week at the Dubai Tour and Volta a la Comunitat Valenciana.

Shimano unveiled the new groupset at the 2016 Tour de France, and while more than six months have passed, only Team Sky (full groupset and wheels), FDJ (crankset, power meter) and Bahrain-Merida (front brake) have been seen using the new components.

Team mechanics during the Tour Down Under suggested they expect to fully equip their teams with the groupsets in time for the spring Classics, though it remains to be seen whether all of the 14 WorldTour teams that use Shimano components will receive the groupsets and wheels from the component giant.

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Josh has been a fan of road racing since a youngster, partly due to an obsession with a certain Texan during his earlier years. Josh is now based in Bristol via running a popular cycling cafe in Surrey near where he grew up.
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