South African professional triathlete Henri Schoeman signed on with Swift Carbon back in last spring, before going on to win Bronze in the 2016 Rio Olympics in August and then to take the win at the ITU World Triathlon Series Grand Final a few weeks later in September. Both times he was riding stock versions of Swift’s Hypervox aero road bike in team cyan colors (ITU triathlon permits drafting and requires drop bar setups), so Swift decided it was time to reward him with a custom painted version commemorating this past season’s success…
With Swift Carbon also based in South Africa, they were happy to have the young athlete continue competing on their bikes. He had ridden their all-arounder road Ultravox before the aero bike was introduced.
Since ITU triathlons end up with a big bunch of athletes already worked over from the swim and riding in packs, traditional road bikes offer more safety & stability with drafting. That’s the rationale behind why you see road bikes vs. triathlon/TT bikes at the Olympics, and why an aero bike is the ITU triathlete’s best option. Schoeman does race the occasional non-drafting races, like some 70.3 events he’ll compete in towards the end of 2017 where he will ride Swift’s aero Triathlon/TT bike – the Neurogen.
Schoeman gets a custom touch for racing this coming season. Swift has custom painted a dark gray frameset for him with his own HS monogram logo on the seattube, low-key South African flag details on the seatstays and inside of the fork blades, and to top it off all the logos in Bronze in honor of his Olympic medal.
The core of Schoeman’s new bike is Swift’s top Hypervox frameset made from a mix of Toray and Mitsubishi-Rayon carbon, and designed to be rigid from dropout-to-dropout along the BB, but forgiving in the seatstays. His bike is spec’d with a Shimano Dura-Ace 9050 Di2 drivetrain & brakes, and Rotor cranks with no-Q round rings.
There is also a heavy (light?) dose of CeramicSpeed parts, including smooth rolling bearings throughout, those crazy OSPW rear derailleur pulleys (over sized pulley wheel), and the latest longer-lasting UFO waxed chains we’ve just seen introduced this week (ultra fast optimization). With his ITU races not being too hilly, he sticks with an 11-23 cassette paired to standard 53/39 road rings.
This bike is built up for now with a Rotor Flow aero crankset, but Schoeman will actually be training and racing on Rotor’s 2INpower Aero power meter crankset that uses the same enclosed spider. His wheels are Mavic Cosmic Ultimate tubulars which are shod here in Mavic Yksion Pro tires, but will be raced on Schwalbe One Pro tires.
The build rounds out with an Easton EC90 carbon stem, narrow 40cm Zipp SL Contour carbon bars wrapped with Ritchey tape, a Fizik Arione R1 carbon railed saddle, Look Keo 2 Max pedals, and house brand Swift carbon bottle cages.
“The frame is production standard, but the design is special: to commemorate his big successes in 2016 and for Henri to represent his nation proudly with a cool looking bike,” says Swift founder Mark Blewett, also a South African.
The newly gray-haired (dyed) 25-year-old Schoeman rode the Hypervox through his breakout 2016 season. “It’s designed as an aero bike, which suits the kind of racing we do, but it’s actually pretty smooth too. With the road surfaces we often have to ride on – like in Stockholm and Rio – you really don’t want to feel beaten up by your bike before the run. On the tight circuits you are constantly accelerating and braking so having a bike that handles well is so important, plus you want every watt going onto the road.”