It's no easy thing, punching a hole in the wind when racing against the clock. Reigning world time trial champion Fabian Cancellara has the DNA, I don't. BikeRadar's European editor Jeff Jones certainly has it. But, there's hope for the rest of us: time-cheating goodies were in abundance at Interbike.
Here are just a few lightweight, aero-tunnel tested products you'll see in stores soon:
Felt B2 Pro
Davids Millar and Zabriskie know how to slice the wind, and as Slipstream teammates for 2008 they'll certainly be keen on beating the clock aboard a Felt. The B2 Pro (shown) is constructed of a monocoque, ultra high modulus carbon frame with nose-coned carbon Bayonet aero fork. Look for the 17.97-pound (56cm) time machine at a Felt dealer near you in the coming months. Visit Felt.
Giant Alliance Trinity
Giant's new frame design, marrying aluminum and carbon for stiffness, is also available for races against the clock. The US$3,100 Trinity comes smartly spec'd with Mavic Cosmic Elite wheels, a mix of Shimano Dura-Ace, Ultegra and 105 components, and fi'zi:k Arione Tri2 saddle. Team T-Mobile has done well in 2007, and with Bradley Wiggins and George Hincapie coming for 2008, more riders will be taking a closer look at Giant against the clock. Visit Giant.
When the time trial and multi-sport exploded a handful of years ago, Specialized had just broken into the European road ranks with Festina. Time and experience working with stars like Richard Virenque, Mario Cipollini, Tom Boonen and Paolo Bettini have contributed mightily, and the S-Works engineers delivered the new Transition to Teams Quick-Step and Gerolsteiner during the 2007 Tour de France prologue in London. Triathlon superstars Peter Reid and Chris McCormack are racking up the miles on the new Transition as well. Visit Specialized.
FSA NeoPro cranks
There's nothing NeoPro about these time-trial specific cranks. At 980g (including bottom bracket), the 54/42-tooth geared crank offers a nice, narrow 147mm Q-Factor (the distance measured between the crankarms). The 24mm integrated spindle rolls on oversized ceramic bearings, which propelled Cancellara to a repeat rainbow jersey in Stuttgart. Price: US$750. Visit FSA.
FSA's time-trial category brand will offer this scooped front handlebar hydration accessory in December; retail is targeted at US$100, with two reservoirs. Visit VisionTech.
The Lynskey family founded Litespeed in 1986, sold it in 2000, and returned to the titanium game in 2006. Several national and world time trials were won on Lynskey-built titanium rigs. Visit Lynskey Performance.
SRAM's recent acquisition announcement of Zipp will certainly assist the Indianapolis maker of fine carbon wheels and bits. The current line will only improve, thanks to SRAM's international engineering and distribution prowess. Visit Zipp.
Steve Hed's been tweaking carbon wheels and bits for two decades-plus, and has probably spent more time in wind tunnels than anyone on the planet. His association with US Postal/Discovery Channel/Bontrager certainly brought attention (and respect) his way. Visit Hed Cycling.
© BikeRadar 2007