Pro bike: Alban Lakata’s Canyon Lux CF

2015 Absa Cape Epic bike of Team Ergon-Topeak

As a Leadville 100 course record holder, World and European marathon champion and multiple Austrian marathon-champion, Alban Lakata is often seen on the podiums of the world’s largest single- and multi-day marathon races.


Lakata is racing the 2015 Absa Cape Epic with Topeak-Ergon team-mate Krystian Hynek. Lakata and the rest of the team race on Canyon Lux CF dual suspension bikes in team livery.

The Canyon Lux CF is a 29er with 100mm travel front and rear, and has been near purpose-built for marathon events like the Cape Epic. This full carbon model has a claimed frame weight of just 1,850g.

‘FlexPivot’ is canyon’s name for the flexible seatstay’s that replace a more common rear pivot point: ‘flexpivot’ is canyon’s name for the flexible seatstay’s that replace a more common rear pivot point

Canyon’s Flex Pivot replaces the need for a more traditional bearing or bushing pivot

The effective single-pivot design employs a vertically flexible seatstay as part of the one-piece rear triangle, instead of having a pivot point at the rear-axle. This removes a common wear point and in turn reduces weight and increases rear-end stiffness.

Usually the Lux frame features a neat bumper behind the headset to prevent top tube damage from a swinging handlebar. However in an effort to reduce weight, Lakata’s bike just shows the bare holes where this feature normally sits.

Sitting at the left hand, a rockshox xloc ‘full sprint’ lever locks both front and rear shocks with a simple push: sitting at the left hand, a rockshox xloc ‘full sprint’ lever locks both front and rear shocks with a simple push

Full suspension lockout is available with the push of a button

Both front and rear suspension shocks can be manually locked out using the RockShox XLoc Full Sprint lever at the left-hand side. This sealed hydraulic push-button lever simply opens or closes the shocks together.

Like Jaroslav Kulhavy, whose bike we profiled earlier this week, Lakata is racing the Cape Epic with a power meter – a SRAM XX1 SRM, to be specific. Given Lakata’s nickname, the ‘Albanator’, we’re sure this SRM sees enormous peaks in its data more than occasionally.

A sram xx1 srm holds a single 34t chainring: a sram xx1 srm holds a single 34t chainring

It’s a testament to SRM to see its power meters ridden in the conditions of the Cape Epic

It’s quite astounding how many top teams are on SRAM’s single-ring, 11-speed XX1 groupset. Lakata’s 10-42t cassette is matched with a 34t chainring, a little smaller than what he rode with last year and what Kulhavy is riding this year. When we asked about his chainring choice, Lakata joked: “I’m getting old.”

Topeak-Ergon were the only team at the Absa Cape Epic using the new SRAM Rise 60 carbon wheels. At a claimed 1,430g, this tubeless wheelset is one of the few off-the-shelf options to feature the new ‘predictive steering’ front hub required by RockShox’s RS-1 fork.

These SRAM wheels use a hookless bead for a simpler, stronger and lighter rim design that retains tubeless compatibility, a concept first introduced by Specialized’s wheel brand Roval.

Lakata is kept comfortable with Ergon’s GS-1 ergonomic marathon race grip, a model he helped develop. The right grip has been cut in half to fit with a SRAM gripshifter, despite there already being a shortened version available in the German brand’s catalogue. Out back sits the new Ergon SMR3-M saddle – another product that Lakata helped develop.

The ridges on the barplug are a clear sign that a sahmurai sword tyre plug kit hides within: the ridges on the barplug are a clear sign that a sahmurai sword tyre plug kit hides within

Just about every top athlete at the Cape Epic races with tubeless tire plugs in case of puncture. Lakata’s are hidden inside the handlebar

Hidden behind Ergon branding within the downward-swept carbon handlebar is the Sahmurai Sword tubeless puncture repair kit.

Despite the addition of a SRM power meter, Lakata’s bike was the lightest we weighed at the 2015 Absa Cape Epic. This is achieved through a few ultra-light components from Carbon-Ti and potentially AX Lightness too. Excluding the SRM Power Control computer (but including a GoPro), Lakata’s Cape Epic setup weighs 10.95kg (24.07lb).

For a closer look at Alban Lakata’s Canyon, click or swipe through our gallery above. For further reading on Team Topeak-Ergon and their jouney at the Absa Cape Epic, visit Ergon’s interactive site.

Complete bike specifications

  • Frame: Canyon Lux CF, size 19in (large)
  • Rear shock: RockShox Monarch XX, with XLoc Full-Sprint lockout remote
  • Fork: RockShox RS-1 100mm, shared XLoc Full-Sprint remote with rear shock
  • Headset: Canecreek integrated
  • Stem: Canyon V14, 115mm
  • Handlebar: Canyon H21 carbon flat, 700mm (turned upside down)
  • Grips: Ergon GS-1
  • Front brake: SRAM XX, 160mm rotor
  • Rear brake: SRAM XX, 160mm rotor
  • Rear derailleur: SRAM XX1
  • Shift levers: SRAM XX1 gripshift
  • Cassette: SRAM XX1 10-42T 11-speed
  • Chain: SRAM XX1
  • Crankset: SRAM XX1 SRM power meter, 175mm, 34T chainring
  • Bottom bracket: GXP pressfit
  • Pedals: Crank Brothers Candy 11
  • Wheelset: SRAM Rise 60 29in
  • Front tyre: Continental Race King ProTection 2.2in
  • Rear tyre: Continental Race King ProTection 2.2in
  • Saddle: Ergon SMR3-M
  • Seatpost: Unbranded, likely AX Lightness Europa Premium
  • Bottle cages: Topeak Shuttle CB
  • Other accessories: Sahmurai Sword plug kit, Topeak Co2, SRM Power Control 7, GoPro Hero 4

Critical measurements

  • Rider’s height: 1.84m (6ft)
  • Rider’s weight: 78kg (172lb)
  • Saddle height from BB, c-t: 810mm
  • Saddle setback: 0mm
  • Tip of saddle to centre of bars: 540mm
  • Seat tube length (c-t): 490mm
  • Head tube length: 115mm
  • Top tube length (effective): 606mm
  • Weight: 10.94kg (24.07lb) as pictured, with GoPro, without SRM head unit