This story was originally published on Cyclingnews.
The term ‘dynasty’ is often used in other sports to denote a particular team’s utter domination over several years. In the small world of the Cyclingnews Reader Poll, at least, that word certainly applies to Cervelo – the company has now only lost the ‘Best Team Bike’ category once in the past 10 years.
Cervelo would be more apt to tout the performance benefits of its aero-minded S5 and S3 since, with all else being equal, either model is measurably faster than their lighter and stiffer R-series counterparts. As Garmin-Sharp sports scientist Robby Ketchell explains it, however, team riders choose particular bikes based on “performance during a particular moment”.
For Dan Martin, that moment came on the final climb into Bergamo at the Giro di Lombardia where he launched a decisive attack in the final kilometre after being mostly sheltered from the wind by his teammates. In that situation, the more classic performance metrics of weight and stiffness won the day – and the race.
Pinarello Dogma F8
Second place in this year’s Best Team Bike category goes to Team Sky’s new Pinarello Dogma F8, which finally moves past the company’s distinctively wavy Onda seatstays and fork blades in favour of a more conventional aesthetic. The Dogma F8 isn’t just about a new look, either. According to Pinarello, the new model also borrows shaping from the TT-specific Bolide for less aerodynamic drag, it’s more rigid than before, and it’s a substantial 120g lighter, too, all while maintaining its predecessor’s enviable handling characteristics.
Specialized S-Works Tarmac
Rounding out the top three is Specialized’s latest S-Works Tarmac as ridden by Omega Pharma-QuickStep, Saxo-Tinkoff and the Astana squad. The idea of size-specific design isn’t exactly new, but Specialized claims that this was traditionally done by first starting with a 56cm model and then modifying from there. Instead, the Big S says that each size of the new S-Works Tarmac was designed as a completely separate project, which supposedly now results in truly identical ride characteristics across the board.
|#||Rider Name (Country) Team||Result|
|1||Garmin-Sharp Cervélo R5||23.58%|
|2||Team Sky Pinarello Dogma F8||16.92%|
|3||Astana Specialized S-Works Tarmac||14.87%|
|4||Cannondale SuperSix EVO||11.00%|
|5||Trek Factory Racing Trek Domane Classics||9.93%|
|6||BMC TeamMachine SLR01||8.81%|
|7||Movistar Canyon Ultimate CF SLX||6.83%|
|8||Orica-GreenEdge Scott Foil||3.77%|
|9||Ag2r-La Mondiale Focus Izalco Max||2.36%|
|10||Rabobank-Liv Liv Envie Advanced||1.93%|