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While he may have only won a single finish line sprint this year, Cavendish’s new Specialized Venge ViAS at least looked to be in top form. Most every other bike in the pits was the standard Venge, providing Cav the biggest aero advantage to keep him speeding along to the end where his real show would have begun.

He also kept his custom painted green and white bike from races past, and other bikes showed off how the GPS trackers switch from bike to bike and where they hid the Di2 junction boxes…

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The new Venge ViAS was introduced with bold claims, offering to subtract a full two minutes from a 40km ride, and even more when paired with new clothing and gear.

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FSA’s a team sponsor, hence the stickers on the bar tape, but that’s Specialized’s new Aerofly ViAS handlebar.

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2014 World Champion Michal Kwiatkowski rode the standard Venge.

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He, like many others in the Tour, had his own way of identifying key spots on the stage. This one was from Stage Two and showed the kilometer marker for the sprint, feed zone, a 90º turn and the finish.

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Cav’s prior Venge with custom sprinter’s green was on the rooftop as a backup.

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With the FSA team sponsorship, he’s switched from the massive brick of stem from PRO he used to run.

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The oversized Vision stem is the same new one spotted on Nacer Bouhanni’s Orbea.

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No surprise to see the Specialized Shiv bikes ready for TT action.

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If you’ve noticed small dongles protruding from the riders’ saddles this year, those are the GPS trackers used by the race organizers and television crews to show live tracking. When we found this one, we also spotted the team’s hiding spot for their Di2 junction boxes, which put the charging port conveniently close to the internal battery. It’s a clever mounting spot we hadn’t seen before.

16 COMMENTS

  1. BR, you guys might want to mention that both Cav and Sagan stopped riding the new Venge and instead turned to last year’s Venge. That kind of takes the shine off the new bike and the claims made about it.

  2. There was a video of guy who talked to Cav basically saying those new brakes on new Venge sucks so much he wouldn’t want to ride that bike on any road with descent.

  3. Did they? I know that Cavendish refused to descend on the awful brakes but he still rode it in the flat stages as far as I know.

    Sagan spent a lot of time on a television on a Tarmac because he was trying to win hilly stages in the break.

  4. @Eric Hansen: I expect the reason for taping that far is to cover Specialized branding, given the FSA logo on top…

  5. Neither Sagan not Cav rode the new Venge more than one or two stages. Sagan said it was too heavy to ride in mountains, Cav said brakes didn’t work well enough for him to use it. Not just in hilly stuff, neither of them even rode it in the final ceremonial sprint stage.

  6. My guess is that this bike is going to be a complete flop compared to their last Venge. Mostly due to the fact that its ugly, and the Madone is so much cooler, more affordable(as of now at least), and riders actually used it. This bike will have to destroy the Madone in the tunnel for people to buy them in mass like the Venge once both of these bikes are available for around the $4,000 mark in a year or so.

  7. @Hotdogintheseatpost, I believe it was a GCN video wherein Cav is credited with refusing both to ride this bike downhill (as well as in the rain).

    As for Sagan, it’s not uncommon for riders to switch bikes during a stage. Quite less so for them to throw a bottle at the cameraman when they get caught doing it.

  8. i like riser bars on mtbs, i don’t get the point of this one though!?

    i agree on the total ugliness of this try to be aero, altough the unconventional approach is worth a compliment.

    cav won a stage on this bike, didn’t he?

  9. First thought that came to mind on the Venge ViAS when the pics came out… ugly… and the brakes? In-house design or farmed out? I still don’t know. But the hope was its better than Dura-Ace or Red or Super Record. Funny though that the general frame layout is quite similar to offerings from the other bike makers. Maybe that’s just the dictate of the wind tunnel.

  10. @Bas – drag is affected by the frontal area, which goes with the square. Reduction in frontal area reduces drag by a factor of four. By keeping the stem perfectly in line with the airflow, they reduce its frontal area to a minimum. The rise still has to happen according to the rider’s needs, but the rise can be accomplished with less frontal area when it’s done through the knife edge of an aerobar.

  11. Good spot, Fd=(rho*v^2*Cd*A)/2. We’ve had exactly one problem involving drag force this semester, and I was speaking from memory.

  12. I don’t get the placement of the di2 junction box. I don’t find it a clever place at all. Sure, it keeps it closer to the internal seat post battery. But how do they hook up the shift/brake levers to the junction box? By using ultra-long (custom?) di2 cables that go from each lever into the down tube, around the BB and up into the seat post then under the seat?

What do you think?

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