A pre-production part and a chain of miscommunications lead to a crash that took Quick-Step racer Niki Terpstra out of this year’s Paris-Roubaix, according to Specialized.
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Like many riders sponsored by Specialized, Terpestra tackled the cobbles aboard the Roubaix, which uses a spring housed in a cartridge in the steerer tube to provide 20mm of suspension to take the edge off rough roads.
Unlike other Roubaix riders, Terpestra opted to run a rigid cartridge in place of the stock version, or the stiffer, pro-only spring used by Quick-Step teammate Tom Boonen during the Classics.
As first reported by Cycling Weekly, this equipment change necessitated the creation of a prototype rigid alloy cartridge for the 2014 Paris-Roubaix winner.
According to Specialized, this pre-production unit was not intended to be raced. Through a series of unfortunate miscommunications it was never replaced with a version engineered to withstand the rigors of Paris-Roubaix.
While this failed part took the 32-year-old Dutchman out of the race, he was lucky enough walk away from the crash with nothing more than a few cuts and bruises.
Specialized notes that since the failed component isn’t found in production Future Shocks, there is no failure risk to Roubaix owners.