In another commemoration of the 100th edition of the Giro d’Italia which gets underway on the island of Sardinia tomorrow, Merida has crafted a one-off bike for two-time winner Vincenzo Nibali. While most special edition Giro bikes tend to opt for a healthy dose of Pink, Merida went for a more classic look for their Bahrain Merida team leader. On the eve of the race’s start Merida sent over some detail pics of Nibali’s bike lounging by the pool, wrapped in the names of all past Giro winners…

courtesy Merida, photos by Bettiniphoto

Relaxing before the chaos of the Giro gets underway on Friday, the black and gold Centenario design of Nibali’s Scultura takes inspiration from the spiral trophy that each winner receives, listing each winner before them. With Vincenzo Nibali returning to the tour as defending champion, his bike is built up ready to race with an R9150 Dura-Ace Di2 groupset, SRM’s Look-made and adjustable length carbon-armed power meter with D-A 9000 spider and rings, widened matching gold Fulcrum Speed 55T carbon tubulars wrapped in Continental Competition Pro LTD tires, and an FSA K-Force cockpit topped by a Prologo Scratch 2 saddle.

That spiral isn’t just gold paint either, Merida went for real gold leaf that was wrapped by hand around the carbon tubes for a classic weathered ribbon look, before giving it a protective clearcoat on top. They even gold leaf-ed the modular shift cable routing port that doesn’t get used since the team is racing on the Di2 version of Shimano’s latest R9100 series Dura-Ace.

Naturally Nibali gets his name painted in gold as well. No rider name decals here, although no one on his team is likely to mix up who this one-of-a-kind bike belongs to anyway.

And Nibali won’t have to worry about the added weight of some extra paint, gold leaf, and more clearcoat. At just 750g claimed for the Scultura frame (also said to build up into the lightest production bike out there), the team probably already has to go out of their way to build the bikes back up to at least the UCI’s 6.8kg weight limit.

The spiral ends with Vincenzo Nibali himself, and two stars for his wins in 2013 & 2016. He’ll hope to add another star this month, to join the 8 other riders who have won three or more (including Italians Alfredo Binda and Fausto Coppi, and Belgian Eddy Merckx who’ve each won 5 Giros.)


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