Pro Bike: Dowsett’s Canyon Speedmax WHR

British rider Alex Dowsett's World Hour Record machine

Britain’s Alex Dowsett beat the World Hour Record on 2 May 2015, managing 52.937km aboard his Canyon Speedmax WHR to write himself into cycling history.

In order to help Dowsett on his way to a 442m demolishing of Rohan Dennis' record, Movistar bike sponsor Canyon created a track-specific version of the German brand’s flagship Speedmax TT bike especially for the attempt.

The bike’s tube profiles and minimal frontal area are designed to reduce air turbulence. Gone are the integrated front and rear brakes along with bottle bosses, derailleur mountings and cable holes.

Canyon says this means a much smoother surface than the regular Speedmax and that “the result is a trimmed down and focused design that leaves no doubts as to this bike’s purpose.”

The rear horizontal dropouts allow perfect chain tension: the rear horizontal dropouts allow perfect chain tension
The rear horizontal dropouts allow perfect chain tension: the rear horizontal dropouts allow perfect chain tension

The dropouts have been changed along with the axle width

The rear triangle has had the biggest modification, with the carbon layup here being completely revised to accommodate the narrower 120mm track-specific axle. Symmetrical horizontal dropouts have replaced the derailleur hanger found on the road version of the bike. These allow the wheel to be fixed with optimum chain tension and are made of aircraft grade 7075 alloy for strength and stiffness.

Canyon says the long wheelbase and chainstays extend the centre of gravity for better stability, aided by a low bottom bracket. Canyon is putting a lot of stock in the bike’s handling, touting the benefits of a flat 73.25-degree steering angle combined with the company’s adjustable Rake Shift on the front dropout, which allows a relatively low 39mm of fork rake.

The Speedmax’s flat integrated stem is already optimised for aerodynamics, with a huge stack of risers getting Dowsett’s forearms into his perfected aero tuck. Without brakes and tip shifters, aero plugs act as bar ends, the grips covered with Lizard Skin tape.

Dowsett used newly developed Campagnolo Pista double-disc wheels, which feature ceramic bearings for low-friction rolling and are wrapped in 22mm Continental Tempo II tubulars. Made with Conti’s grippy BlackChilli compound, these are designed to take a monstrous 220psi to help reduce rolling resistance over the boards.

The new campagnolo pista crankset has a power2max power meter in the spider: the new campagnolo pista crankset has a power2max power meter in the spider
The new campagnolo pista crankset has a power2max power meter in the spider: the new campagnolo pista crankset has a power2max power meter in the spider

The crankset is brand new and has a Power2Max built in

Campag’s track-specific Pista crankset (another new design) features full-carbon crankarms. The 54, 55 or 56t chainrings are strengthened to handle high-torque track riding and help optimise the chain line. The spider is a Power2Max power meter, complete with Movistar badge.

The bike has a simple black and white paint scheme with Dowsett’s name and ‘the #perfecthour’ decals on the top tube, along with some Movistar detailing on the seat tube. All-up, including Dowsett’s Look Keo Blade Aero pedals, the bike weighs just 7.3kg. Topping the aero seatpost is a Fizik Antares Saddle.

Dowsett also wore a new advanced skinsuit from Endura, created in collaboration with aero specialist Drag2Zero, which was developed specifically for the attempt.

Full bike specs

  • Frame and fork: Canyon Speedmax WHR
  • Bars: Speedmax Flat Handlebar W/O holes
  • Cockpit: Speedmax L Bend Extensions with Lizard Skin 1.8mm tape
  • Seatpost: Canyon Speedmax
  • Saddle: Fizik Antares
  • Wheels: Campagnolo Pista Disc
  • Tubulars: Continental Tempo II, 22mm
  • Crankset: Campagnolo Pista with Power2Max power meter
  • Chain: KMC Track
  • Head tube stiffness: 80 NM/°
  • Bottom bracket stiffness: 65 N/MM

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