Pro bike: Thomas Dekker’s Cervélo S5

Aero machine for Garmin-Barracuda's latest signing

Dutch climbing and time trial specialist Thomas Dekker has a long road ahead of him after serving a two-year suspension for EPO use. Garmin-Barracuda directeur sportif Jonathan Vaughters has given the fallen rider a second chance, however, and Dekker is hoping his new team-issue Cervélo S5 will help him prove his worth this coming season.


The Cervélo S5 strikes a distinctive profile, what with its wild array of teardrop forms, hard edges and unusual angles. In addition to the aero cross-sections and very Cervélo P4-like rear end, there’s also an hourglass profile straight 1-1/8in head tube to minimize frontal area, a dropped down tube that blends cleanly with the fork crown and just barely clears the front tire, and a flattened section on the down tube that Cervélo claim helps direct air around water bottles.

But that shape is exactly what gives the S5 its edge and, according to Cervélo, lets it post drag numbers that supposedly even rival some companies’ full-blown time trial chassis. In Dekker’s case, that’s likely about all that matters when he’s sticking his nose into the wind this year. That aerodynamic advantage hasn’t come at a heavy cost in terms of mass, either, with claimed frame weights hovering around 1kg.

The Shimano Dura-Ace Di2 electronic group on Dekker’s S5 is a common sight in the pro peloton these days but it’s a key distinction that Garmin-Barracuda buy those components instead of receiving them for free from Shimano. This is a more expensive route than a full-blown sponsorship deal but it affords the team the freedom to mix and match componentry at will as well as choose wheels and cockpits that don’t lie beneath the Shimano and PRO corporate umbrella.

That latitude in component choice plays an especially critical role in time trial gear as Garmin-Barracuda are free to use the new Magura RT8 TT hydraulic rim brakes on their Cervélo P5s without having to worry about sponsorship conflicts. 

Key substitutions on Dekker’s road bike include Rotor 3D+ cranks and Q-Rings, 3T bar and stem, Mavic Cosmic Carbone Ultimate carbon tubular wheels and Garmin’s own Vector power measuring pedals (though the transmitter pods are conspicuously absent in the photos). Completing the package is an FSA Orbit IS-2 integrated headset, a Fi’zi:k Arione Tri 2 saddle, Arundel Mandible carbon fiber bottle cages, CamelBak Podium bottles and a Garmin Edge 500 computer. Total bike weight, according to team mechanic Geoff Brown, is 7.0kg (15.43lb).

Complete bike specifications

  • Frame: Cervélo S5 Team, 56cm
  • Headset: FSA Orbit IS-2 integrated, 1-1/8in
  • Stem: 3T ARX Team, 12cm x -6°
  • Handlebar: 3T Rotundo Pro, 42cm (c-c)
  • Tape: 3T cork
  • Front brake: Shimano Dura-Ace BR-7900 w/ SwissStop Yellow King pads
  • Rear brake: Shimano Dura-Ace BR-7900 w/ SwissStop Yellow King pads
  • Brake levers: Shimano Dura-Ace Di2 STI Dual Control ST-7970
  • Front derailleur: Shimano Dura-Ace Di2 FD-7970
  • 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: Rotor 3D+ TT, 175mm, 53/39T
  • Bottom bracket: Rotor
  • Pedals: Garmin Vector
  • Wheelset: Mavic Cosmic Carbone Ultimate
  • Front tire: Mavic Yksion GripLink tubular
  • Rear tire: Mavic Yksion PowerLink tubular
  • Saddle: Fi’zi:k Arione Tri 2
  • Bottle cages: Arundel Mandible (2)
  • Computer: Garmin Edge 500

Critical measurements

  • Rider’s height: 1.88m (6ft 2in)
  • Rider’s weight: 70kg (154lb)
  • Saddle height, from BB (c-t): 795mm
  • Saddle setback: 95mm
  • Seat tube length, c-t: 513mm
  • Tip of saddle nose to C of bars (next to stem): 600mm
  • Saddle-to-bar drop (vertical): 92mm
  • Head tube length: 179mm
  • Top tube length: 564mm (horizontal)
  • Total bicycle weight: 7.0kg (15.43)