World champion and Tour de France green jersey winner Mark Cavendish joined British Prime Minister David Cameron for the grand opening of the new McLaren Production Centre in Woking, UK.
McLaren’s Applied Technologies group partnered with Specialized to co-develop the 2012 S-Works + McLaren Venge, which Cavendish rode to victories with the HTC-Highroad team this season.
While Mr Cameron was eager to celebrate the economic implications of McLaren’s new centre, the Vodafone McLaren Mercedes Formula 1 drivers Lewis Hamilton and Jenson Button took the opportunity to talk bikes with Cavendish. Hamilton asked the rider what he thought McLaren brought the new bikes. “Attention to detail, I think,” Cavendish said, in a press release. “Look at Formula 1, you look at all the little details that go into everything. To bring McLaren in is incredible.”
Hamilton and Button each ride Specialized bikes and admired the S-Works + McLaren Venge, which was produced after a long partnership between Specialized and McLaren Applied Technologies. A sample of the bike is exhibited at McLaren’s Technology Centre. Outside the Formula 1 circuit, Button is a cycling enthusiast and competes in triathlons around the world when not piloting his McLaren Mercedes MP4-26.
Beyond the advanced carbon fiber layups McLaren helped refine for the S-Works + McLaren Venge, Cavendish pointed out some of the design details, such as hiding the battery of the Shimano Dura-Ace Di2 electronic shifting group in the frame. “It’s quite embarrassing for me to stand here and say little things like that are big for aerodynamics on a bike,” Cavendish said.
“It was never thought of before, and it’s been incredible working here with the (McLaren) guys and the guys at Specialized and seeing how this bike’s evolved. And obviously, I won the green jersey in the Tour de France this year and the world championships on it, so the results can just speak for themselves about this new bike. It was a really great time, actually.”
Mark Cavendish, Ron Dennis, David Cameron, Lewis Hamilton and Jenson Button