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Bikes of the Tour: David Millar's Saunier Duval Scott proto TT bike, July 18, 2006

Anthony Tan takes a look at a featherweght TT bike

A Scott for a Scot

Close-up of the head-tube cluster.
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The fork
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A Scott for a Scot.
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The seat-tube
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The rear disc wheel
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The Saunier Duval team roll on
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David Millar's Scott Plasma TT prototype.
Photo ©: Anthony Tan
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A prototype, but derived from the popular Scott Plasma triathlon bike, David Millar's time trial bike cries out to be ridden fast.

Spotted at the Tour's opening time trial stage in Saint-Gregoire, both Millar and team-mate Gilberto Simoni's machines looked a little different from the rest, and not just for their stunning paintwork.

This observation was confirmed by Scott USA's director of marketing, Adrian Montgomery, who told Cyclingnews: "The bike Millar is riding - and Simoni - is a Plasma TT prototype.

"It features a shorter, steeper head-tube, shorter chainstays, and a different seat-tube angle from our production bike. We are working on replacing the TT alloy with this once it is refined.

"It's still a 980 gram frame," added Montgomery, "which we believe to be the lightest TT frame in the pro peloton. Simoni's bike at the Tour of California weighed under the UCI weight limit - unheard of for a TT bike."

Constructed of high modulus carbon - as used on their CR1 road bike - the Plasma frame has been in development for eighteen months, and was recently tested at the famous Allied Signal wind tunnel in San Diego, California, where its aerodynamics were proven, then further refined.

Continued Montgomery: "We've given several rounds of this bike to Millar throughout its development, the first was given to him in January at the team camp.

"It's Millar's bike, so he has to love it; in essence, he designed it. He does like the light weight and how areo the bike is - we tested it with him in the San Diego wind tunnel."

Stopping the clock in Rennes with a time of 1'05'17, the Scot's ride was below-par for a rider of his calibre, placing 37th behind stage winner Serguei Gonchar of T-Mobile. However, after a two-year absence from top-level competition, it appears the 29 year-old is slowly bringing himself back to his best, so one could see an improved performance at the Tour's next time test on July 22.


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Images by Anthony Tan/Cyclingnews