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Bayern Rundfahrt
Photo ©: Schaaf

Tech News – February 3, 2005

Edited by John Stevenson

Got tech? Send press releases, news, and tech questions to the Cyclingnews tech desk.

Guido Trentin's Saunier Duval-Prodir Scott CR1
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Fulcrum Racing Light wheel
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The Scott CR1
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Selle Italia SLR saddle
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Guido Trentin's Saunier Duval-Prodir Scott CR1 Team Issue

The Saunier Duval team was launched recently in Milan and we took the opportunity to get a look one of the bikes issued to new team member Guido Trentin.

A new arrival from Cofidis, climber Trentin will be crucial edition to the squad to support Gibo Simoni in his bid for a third Giro d'Italia win this coming May. Trentin's team bike is made in Taiwan with Scott's proprietary Ten-Tech Composite, and Scott claims a weight of 880 grams for the CR1 Team Issue frame without fork.

Trentin's Saunier CR1 is equipped with the Campagnolo Record 10 group, with liberal use of carbon fiber throughout, and runs on Fulcrum wheels. The wheels on Trentin's bike look to be a variant of Fulcrum's new Racing Light model with carbon fiber rims and roll on Continental rubber. Other key elements of the bike spec are Ritchey WCS Road carbon handlebars & new 4 Axis forged alloy stem. And atop each Ritchey WCS Road seatpost sits a saddle by premier Italian saddle maker Selle Italia.

Forkwise, the CR1 Team Issue has a carbon fiber version with 1 1/8in carbon fiber steerer in an integrated headset and the Scott CR1 frame is available in six different sloping sizes from XS to XXL.

More info: www.scottusa.com

More to see at North American Handmade bike show

Organisers of the second annual North American Hand Made Bicycle Show have announced that Shimano and Wheelbuilder have signed up as exhibitors at the March 3-5, 2006 show in San Jose, California which focuses on independent framebuilders and their products. The event will also offer a series of seminars on bike design, fit and technology.

"I am very pleased to have Shimano come on board," said show organiser Don Walker. "They have been working hard to establish relationships with independent framebuilders, and their presence at the show confirms exactly that."

Chad Roberts from Shimano's Marketing Department said "Shimano supports small frame builders 100% and feel that they are what makes the industry so special," said Shimano's Chad Roberts. "Trends and new designs more often than not come from these smaller companies and without them the bike industry as we know it would not exist. It is important to support such events and companies as they are the backbone of what the bicycle industry was built on. Shimano does not forget where their background comes from, and realises how import small businesses are to the success of the bicycle industry. Just remember all the big bike companies started out as small guys too."

The show's seminars offer something of interest to everyone who is interested in bike technology, covering subjects from choosing a framebuilder to the latest materials. The seminars currently confirmed are:

Bill Boston: Accufit Designer Demonstration.
Craig Calfee: Modern Materials.
Tom Kellogg: How to choose your next framebuilder.
Brian Baylis: The classic steel lugged bicycle.
John Murphy: The art of lug carving.
Paul Sadoff: Performance cycling.
Reynolds Tubing: 953 Q/A.
Richard Schwinn: Decisions on your handbuilt bike - the promise and pitfalls.
Henry Folson: Lug making.
Storytime with the builders.

The show has also added a guest of honour in legendary US frame builder A.D. "Art" Stump. Art Stump began framebuilding in the late 1960s and while he went more for quality than quantity, he became known for his lug carving and his beautifully ornate frames. Stump's frames are very rare, and Walker says that anyone who owns one is welcome to display it at the show and get free admission for all 3 days.

Admission prices range from $12 for a one-day pass to $100 for a 3 day pass including admission into the seminars.

For more information see www.handmadebicycleshow.com.

Carbon 29er from Orbea

Bike manufacturer Orbea, best known as the equipment sponsor of the Euskaltel-Euskadi team, has just announced what to the best of our knowledge is a unique machine: a monocoque carbon fiber mountain bike with "29in" (700C) wheels. Proponents of the larger wheel size claim that its big advantage is faster rolling over rough ground, but with only steel and aluminium frames available for 29in wheels, they've been a slightly heavier choice.

Not any more. "With the introduction of the Alma 29 we are making our mark on the U.S. mountain bike market. We wanted to create a bike unlike anything else. You get the benefit of the bigger wheels, but it steers quickly, is ultra-stable and is an unbelievable climber," said Tony Karklins, Orbea USA's managing director.

Orbea claims the Alma 29 frame will weigh just 1300g (2.9lb) thanks to its one-piece front triangle and high modulus carbon fiber. The bike is designed to be laterally stiff, quick handling and comfortable.

"Our athletes helped drive this project. Racers have seen how fast and comfortable 29ers can be, and now we can give them a bike that is ultra-competitive from a weight standpoint. 29ers are taking off, and we knew we could make a bike that rides better and faster than anything else out there," Karklins said.

Alma 29ers will be available with Shimano XT and XTR or SRAM XO equipment, starting from US3,000. The bike will be officially unveiled at Sea Otter, April 6-9.

More info: www.orbea-usa.com

Slingshot Ripper
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The Ripper's flex board
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Slingshot goes aluminium

Suspension bike maker Slingshot has announced what it says is a long-awaited new model: an aluminium mountain bike frame featuring its novel suspension design.

"After tremendous urging from our customers to develop some aluminum bikes, we are excited to launch the Ripper," said Slingshot president, Scott Templar. The main objective in the development of the frame was to design the ultimate cross-country race machine, Templar added.

As well as a new frame material, the Ripper features improvements to Slingshot's SPT (Sling Power Technology) suspension design. The system uses a composite flex board, stainless cable down tube and spring to provide a low-weight suspension design. The Ripper features a flex board that can be repaired in the field. Shaped like a "dogbone" the board is easily installed without the use of glue (as on older models) allowing the owner to service the bike if board replacement is required. This process used to require the owner to ship the bike back to Slingshot.

The Slingshot Ripper frame retails for $1,400, and is available in 14", 16", 18", and 20" sizes.

For more information see www.slingshotbikes.com

More carbon from Rolf

Rolf Prima TdF58 wheels
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Rolf Prima has announced a new low-spoke-count carbon fiber-rimmed wheel, the TdF58. The new wheels have just 12 bladed spokes each, in Rolf Prima's famous paired-spoke configuration, thanks to an exclusive Nodal Reinforcement process that allows the use of higher spoke tensions to maintain wheel stiffness.

If the TdF58s still have too many spokes for you, Rolf Prima is also offering the Carbon TT wheels, which have a ten-spoke front wheel for even better aerodynamics.

Rolf marketing director TJ Walsh says the TdF58 wheels are UCI-approved for mass-start events, weigh 1310g per pair and retail for US$2300 per set. The 1,295g Carbon TT wheels are US$2399.

More info: www.rolfprima.com

Marianne Vos (Netherlands)
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Rotor takes on the world

Crank and chainring maker Rotor claimed its first cycling world championship at the weekend when Netherlands rising star Marianne Vos won her first senior cyclocross world championship. Vos was using Rotor's elliptical Q-Rings, which Rotor claims provide higher power generation and lower lactate levels than conventional round rings.

Vos just edged ahead of previous world champion Hanka Kupfernagel (Germany) in the finale, and credited the rings with helping her find the necessary final oomph for the sprint. "A little change that makes a big difference," she said.

More info: www.rotorbike.com

Shimano supports MTB World Cup, provides neutral service

Component maker Shimano has signed up as presenting sponsor of the UCI mountain bike World Cup series for the next three years (2006-2008). The series has been without a major sponsor since founder Grundig ended its sponsorship in the late 1990s.

In addition, Shimano will provide neutral technical support at MTB World Cup cross-country races from this year. The UCI introduced technical support areas at cross-country mountain bike races in 2005, reversing over 20 years of tradition in mountain bike racing. Riders had previously been required to be self-sufficient, to simulate cross-country racing's roots in back-country riding.

The introduction of technical support was therefore controversial, not least because initially only riders on UCI-registered MTB trade teams were allowed to set up tech support areas. Now, at least, Shimano's neutral support will be available to all.

"The Shimano neutral service will guarantee equal chances to all riders," said Shimano Europe's Harald Troost. "It also will result in an important cost reduction for the teams since it will not be necessary for them anymore to send mechanics to all World Cup events. Finally, the neutral support will provide for a clear structure, in the interest of the riders. Nobody but the Shimano mechanics will be allowed in the neutral tech support zone, and they will be focusing on one target only which is helping riders with technical problems as fast and good as possible."

More info: bike.shimano.com

Maxxis gets behind Georgia & California tours

Tyre maker Maxxis has announced that it will be a supporter of the inaugural Tour of California, February 19-26, as well as continuing its support of the Tour de Georgia, April 18-23.

"Maxxis is extremely excited to continue supporting the growth of professional road racing in the United States," said marketing manager Brad Klipping. "We believe that the Tour of California will become one of the most respected and anticipated tours of the professional calendar."

Maxxis will also sponsor the Tour de Georgia, which will venture outside of Georgia for the first time this year with a time trial in Chattanooga, Tennessee. Maxxis has its US base in Georgia, so its involvement is especially important.

"The Tour de Georgia is the most anticipated race of the year at Maxxis," said Klipping. "Although Maxxis sponsors countless races, and we continuously live vicariously through our sponsored athletes, Georgia is special. It captures the beauty and emotion of our great home state, showcasing it through the lens of an intense week-long competition. The Tour de Georgia has earned its reputation as the best stage race in North America. At Maxxis, we can't wait."

At Georgia Maxxis will offer Maxxis Madness, the Team DK stunt show at the finish line of each stage, and the Maxxis Feed Zone, where riders slow to get the food that will sustain them through the day's race. Maxxis will also serve as the official tire of the event.

More info: www.maxxis.com

Van Dessel Kermis
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Kabush on Van Dessel

Speaking of Maxxis, Maxxis MTB rider Geoff Kabush will be aboard a Van Dessel road bike when he ventures off the dirt in 2006. Kabush was voted top male MTB rider of 2005 by Cyclingnews readers after a season in which he dominated North American MTB racing. He puts that domination down in part to the conditioning from plenty of road racing last year.

"Racing on the road has been a great way to complement my mountain biking," said Kabush, "and it has been a great experience doing such races as Tour of Langkawi, Tour of Georgia, Tour of Connecticut, and the US Pro Championships in recent years. I had my best season ever last year and it included more racing on the road than ever."

Kabush will ride a Van Dessel Kermis, a bike that he and Van Dessel's Edwin Bull believe is the right machine for a tall rider like Kabush. "I am rather large compared to most," said Kabush, "so it is really important for me to look for a bike that has the correct geometry; a blend of materials that will provide the comfort and stiffness in my size; and of course I want it to be light and look great. I am a competitive person and when I am racing I want my bikes to be the best available."

According to Bull, the Kermis accommodates Kabush's requirements by providing a longer top tube and shorter head tube.

Kabush's fellow Canadian, Mathieu Toulouse, will join him on the road as part of Team Maxxis.

More info: www.vandesselsports.com

First Endurance sponsors T-Mobile again

Supplement maker First Endurance has announced that it will again be sponsoring the women's T-Mobile Professional Cycling Team in 2006. First Endurance supplies the T-Mobile Team with Optygen, Ultragen, E3 and MultiV. Many of the T-Mobile riders were involved with the development of the new, critically acclaimed MultiV endurance vitamin.

One feature of First Endurance's products that the riders particularly seem to like is the company's guarantee that its supplements are clean. "I've been using First Endurance products for a couple of years now and I've been happy with the positive impact on my training and racing," said team rider and former German national champion Ina Teutenberg. "First Endurance only uses high-quality ingredients so athletes can feel confident knowing the products are free of illegal substances."

More info: www.firstendurance.com