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Giro finale
Photo ©: Bettini

Tech News – February 4, 2009

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Rock Racing on Kestrels in 2009

Rock Racing will be riding Shimano Dura-Ace
Photo ©: Kestrel
(Click for larger image)

Rock Racing will be racing on Shimano-equipped carbon Kestrel RT900 bicycles and a new time trial machine during the 2009 season.

"We are thrilled to be partnering with one of the most exciting teams in pro cycling," said Karen Bliss, marketing director at New Jersey-based Advanced Sports, Inc. (ASI), the parent company for Kestrel. "We have built great relationships with many of Rock Racing's riders through our other brands' sponsorships, and I'm happy they will get the opportunity to race on our bikes in 2009."

The team rode DeRosa and Fuji in 2008 (Fuji is also an ASI brand), and is involved with developing a new time trial bike with Kestrel, according to brand manager Steven Harad.

"Rider input at this stage is paramount to the success of our new TT project," Harad said. "I look forward to working closely with Rock's time trial experts to fine-tune our new super bike." Scheduled for release in mid-summer, the yet-to-be named bike has already tested exceedingly well in the wind tunnel, according to Harad.

Current U.S. Pro road champion Tyler Hamilton, who tested the Kestrel road bike the team will be riding, said, "The road bike handles perfectly - it's got an incredible strength to weight ratio. I'm really impressed."

Rock Racing will make its 2009 racing debut at the Tour of California on February 14 in Sacramento. The team roster includes: Victor Hugo Pena Grisales (Columbia), Enrique Gutierrez (Spain), Francisco Mancebo (Spain), Freddy Rodriguez (USA), Tyler Hamilton (USA), David Vitoria (Switzerland), Oscar Sevilla (Spain), and Aaron Kemps (Australia).

Giro Eyewear adds new models for 2009

The 2009 Giro Fader
Photo ©: Giro
(Click for larger image)

Santa Cruz, California-based Giro Sports, best known for its helmets, has added new eyewear to its two-year-old optics line. The company also added Astana road pro Levi Leipheimer and mountain bike racer Adam Craig to its stable of sponsored athletes for 2009, joining Astana's three-time Grand Tour winner Alberto Contador.

The Giro Fader and Cymbal "lifestyle" models are made with Zeiss certified lenses, and are both available in six frame/lens options. The Fader retails for US$110, while the Cymbal sells for US$140.

The 2009 giro fader lifestyle glasses.: the 2009 giro fader lifestyle glasses.

Contador won the 2007 Tour de France while wearing the Giro Havik glasses; he then won the 2008 Giro d'Italia and Tour of Spain, becoming the first man to do so since Bernard Hinault in 1985. Giro has since expanded its sport performance line to include the Havik Full and Compact models, Semi Full and Semi Compact models, and Instigator and Splitter styles.

Giro Senior Brand Manager Eric Richter also told BikeRadar.com that Team Rabobank, home of three-time world road champion Oscar Freire, has joined Garmin-Slipstream as a Giro Eyewear-sponsored team for 2009.

For more information, visit www.giro.com.

Hawk Relay Cycling Team partners with Felt

Hawk Relay Cycling Team, a International Cycling Union (UCI) professional Track trade team based in Los Angeles, California which includes 2-time World Pursuit Champion Sarah Hammer, 2-time US Olympian Adam Duvendeck, and Canadian National Champion Travis Smith, have partnered with Felt Bicycles for the 2009 season.

"I basically told Felt Bicycles we wanted to be associated with the best technological partners in the world and Felt Bicycles is at the top when it comes to producing world-class track frames," said Robin Horwitz, Team Director and owner. "Their work with Sarah and other elite athletes over the last couple of years is well documented and I'm very excited about this partnership. I believe this relationship is going to give our team every advantage."

The Hawk Relay Cycling Team will be using the Felt TK1, which was developed in part at the San Diego Low Speed Wind Tunnel. The Felt TK1 is the same bike used by 2008 US Olympians Hammer, Taylor Phinney, Michael Blatchford and Mike Friedman in Beijing. The TK1 frame is currently available as an aftermarket product.

"When Sarah and her coach Andy (Sparks) told us she was moving to Hawk Relay and that there was an opportunity to be associated with the whole team, it instantly became interesting." says Doug Martin, Felt's Marketing Director. "After a two-hour meeting with Robin it was clear he has the talent, desire and passion to make it all go. We are thrilled to have Adam and Travis on our bikes and listed as Felt athletes."

New Evil Revolt downhill frame

By Matthew Cole

New Evil Revolt downhill frame
Photo ©: Jeff Jones
(Click for larger image)

Based on the Dave Weagle-designed "Delta System", this is the first production model prototype of Evil's new downhill frame.

We saw it at Core Bike 2009 but aren't allowed to show a proper pic of this pre-production frame because it hasn't reached the final stage of its development. What you can see is that there's a single-pivot swingarm at the rear which houses a floating rear shock, a small rocker and linkage.

The position of the shock is offset to bring it in line with the rear wheel, and the frame geometry can be adjusted by flipping the shock so the frame sits higher/lower depending on terrain and rider preferences. The head angle can be adjusted by two degrees, between 64 and 66 degrees.

The Revolt frame will be available in the United Kingdom in mid-April priced at £2,095 for gloss white and £2,195 for anodised black. Both come with a Fox DHX 5.0 coil shock.

Brant Richards to launch new bike brand

On-One designer Brant Richards is leaving to set up a new bike brand through his company Shedfire. He says he is working on a range of frames, parts, "hats and dried meat products" for release early in the summer.

The former Mountain Biking UK journalist set up On-One with Planet X owner Dave Loughran nine years ago. Together, they have produced a range of iconic singlespeeds and mountain bikes including the Inbred, Scandal and 456.

Richards is now moving on to pastures new, and Planet X are looking for a new bike designer for On-One. Today Richards revealed details of his new brand, which he said would be based on a design brief of "making bikes that can go up and down hills, around and over things, without the rider falling off too much".

He said the bikes and components would be available through shops, unlike On-One products, which are only available online. They will be designed at his "palatial headquarters" in Calderdale, West Yorkshire.

Richards said: "I'm spending the next couple of months either in my shed or in Taiwan, working hard to get a lovely range of frames and components for launch under a new brand name in early May. All being well, that brand will be available through one of the UK's key distributors and available to all bike shops in the country, and extending worldwide as we roll out.

"What I'm trying to achieve is that fast route to market, volume purchasing, great margins, all in key areas that the big brands aren't hitting. And if that fails, I've got a backup plan of going to sell odd hats and beef jerky."

Of his departure from On-One, he said: "It's just over nine years since I ended up in the Planet X warehouse in Doncaster and offered to fix some mudguards in return for a singlespeed frame with a funky five-piece welded wishbone that Dave had designed. I hope On-One will continue to be known for product that fills a niche that big manufacturers can't see, or creating niches that people didn't know they needed. Long live On-One!"

Loughran said: "This is an exciting time for On-One. We're looking for a new designer and the opportunities are out there to continue to fill a niche that big manufacturers can't see. We always said our most successful projects were finding the 'niche of a niche' and that's a tradition we're going to continue. I believe a new designer, with different ideas and a fresh look, will help take On-One further along its unusual path."

He added: "I'm sorry that Brant is leaving and wish him every success. He has been an influential part of the team that has built a brand with strong foundations and a cult following."


For a thumbnail gallery of these images, click here

Images by Kestrel

Images by Giro

Images by Jeff Jones/Bikeradar.com