Ahead of the 2018 season, Olympic champion Greg Van Avermaet has been testing the BMC Teammachine SLR01 Disc at a BMC Racing Team training camp in Denia, Spain.
The disc brake version of BMC’s flagship race bike was launched alongside the rim brake model ahead of the Tour de France last summer, but the team has yet to use it in a race.
BMC Racing has also committed to using a full Shimano Dura-Ace R9100 series groupset for 2018, with Shimano’s new integrated power meter. In 2017, BMC Racing used SRM power meters and head units.
BMC designed the Teammachine SLR01 with near identical geometry for both the rim brake and disc brake versions of the frame, meaning their riders can switch between the frames with minimal handling differences.
While disc brakes will perform well in the often wet and muddy conditions of the spring Classics, Van Avermaet’s bread and butter, the complications that occur with getting wheel changes from neutral services and even team mechanics may restrict their use in the bigger one-day races.
The bike is equipped with 160mm disc rotors on the front wheelDaniel Benson/Immediate Media
Tom Boonen famously took the first professional road win on disc brakes at the start of the 2017 season, but chose to race his final Paris-Roubaix on a rim brake version of the Specialized Roubaix, which is not yet available for consumers.
It is understood the UCI allowed special dispensation for the prototype bike that failed during the race for Niki Terpstra, causing the former winner to crash out.
Last season, Greg Van Avermaet won Paris-Roubaix on the more endurance focused BMC Granfondo RBX frameset equipped with 30mm Vittoria tubular tyres. While the Teammachine SLR01 has tyre clearances up to 28mm and could work on the cobbled bergs of Flanders, the brutal cobbles of Roubaix may be too much for the more aggressive Teammachine frame.
The Teammachine SLR01 disc is optimised for 160mm rotors on the front and 140mm on the rear, although it can accommodate 160mm at the rear.
Alongside the BMC and Shimano components, Van Avermaet runs 3T Ernova Ltd Stealth carbon handlebars and an all-black Fizik Antares saddle.
Frame: BMC Teammachine SLR01 disc-specific
Fork: Teammachine SLR01 premium carbon disc specific
Front brake: Shimano Dura-Ace BR-R9170 with 160mm RT99-S rotor
Rear brake: Shimano Dura-Ace BR-R9170 with 140mm RT99-A-SS rotor
Brake/shift levers: Shimano Dura-Ace R9170
Front derailleur: Shimano Dura-Ace R9170
Rear derailleur: Shimano Dura-Ace R9170
Cassette: Shimano Dura-Ace R9170, 11-28
Crankset: Shimano Dura-Ace R9100-P with integrated power meter, 172.5mm cranks, 53/39 chainrings
Wheelset: Shimano Dura-Ace R9100, C40
Tyres: Vittoria Corsa, 25mm tubular
Handlebars: 3T Ernova Ltd Stealth
Stem: BMC ICS 01 integrated cockpit design
Pedals: Shimano Dura-Ace R9100
Saddle: Fizik Antares
Seat post: BMC Teammachine SLR01 D premium carbon
Bottle cages: Elite Cannibal
Click or swipe through the gallery above for a closer look at the Olympic champion’s bike.