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Shots Fired! Boonen Bashes Colnago, It Punches Back

Tom Boonen of Belgium and Quick Step Omega Pharma crosses the finishline to win the 2012 Paris Roubaix cycle race from Compiegne to Roubaix on April 8, 2012 in Paris, FranceTom Boonen of Belgium and Quick Step Omega Pharma crosses the finish line to win the 2012 Paris Roubaix race; (photo/Bryn Lennon/Getty Images)
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2 km/h: that’s how much faster former pro Dirk De Wolf said Tadej Pogacar would be if he didn’t ride a Colnago.

The story threatened to break the internet (as far as wattage nerds experience it) after Tom Boonen joined De Wolf on the Wielerclub Wattage podcast on March 2, saying the 2020 and 2021 Tour de France champion was riding at a disadvantage on his “old school” bike.

Tom Boonen and Dirk De Wolf Throw Shade

“If Tadej Pogačar gets on a bicycle from Jumbo-Visma, Ineos, or Soudal-Quick Step tomorrow, the rest will have no chance,” De Wolf said on the show. “On those bikes, he will pedal another 2km/h faster.”

“[Colnago] undoubtedly has a good product there, but it is like a Ferrari and a Porsche: there is still a difference between the brands,” he later quipped.

Colnago V4Rs road bike being ridden downhill
The Colnago V4Rs: “old school,” according to Tom Boonen. Photo c. Colnago

Boonen offered, “Colnago did indeed have a dip a while ago. It remains a bit of an old-school bike now and they haven’t quite mastered the aero thing yet although they are now catching up.”

Shade thrown, the Italian builder now seeks to throw it right back — by saying, essentially, “oh yeah? Try me.”

Colnago Answers: ‘Try Me’

Colnago announced today it’s inviting Boonen and his colleagues to test the V4Rs, its thoroughbred racer, at its headquarters in Cambiago, Italy. Then, it challenged the cohort to a “public conversation” concerning data it suggests De Wolf sourced to identify the 2km/h difference in performance with other brands in the podcast.

Colnago’s statement derided their comments as “off-the-cuff.” And it emphasized Colnago is orchestrating the throw-down “at its [own] expense.”

“We are of course in contact with the teams on a daily basis and we have not heard a single complaint about the competitiveness of our bikes. In fact, they are ecstatic about the equipment we have provided thus far,” Colnago CEO Nicola Rosin said in the statement.

The two-pronged showdown — test ride and public forum — is set for March 18, shortly before the Milano-Sanremo Spring Classic. That’s “if the invite is accepted” by Boonen and co., Colnago pointed out.

There’s no indication yet whether Boonen has checked “yes” or “no” on the invitation to the playground after school. If he and his cohort do go toe-to-toe with the inflamed Italian bike maker, we imagine they’ll be mixing it up over stats between Colnagos and Pinarellos, Cervelos, and so on — not Ferraris.

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Mark
Mark
23 days ago

he’s not completely wrong, its still a gorgeous bike but some brands have share IP on flow, the infamous cervelo crank shape is well recognised and copied, the kamtail effect and cockpit chsinstay design. its hard not to make anything different now. I still like the brand and a wind tunnel is simply not a road, id question 2 km/h hard but they are very right about the leading accepted top 5 designs 9even top 10), I dont think its a crap bike and the 3T strada was an amazing aero crap bike with cervelo written all over it …

Astro_Kraken
Astro_Kraken
22 days ago

“Try me” is dumb. Try 23mm tires at 120 PSI. Publicly and independently wind tunnel test your bike.

Crashjames
Crashjames
22 days ago

Yep / Tadej has only won, what, 80% of the races he started this year on that crappy bike?

Dinger
Dinger
22 days ago
Reply to  Crashjames

His 40+ second defeat of Vingegaard yesterday was well timed. While I sort of agree with the sentiment of Boonen he’s overplaying the differences. He used to win races with box section rims against other top riders who had aero wheels. He knows how big and small the differences really are.

Veganpotter
Veganpotter
21 days ago
Reply to  Crashjames

Tom accurately addressed that. Pogo is just that good without great bikes.

Fake Namerton
Fake Namerton
22 days ago

Colnago is like Movado, normal mass produced taiwanesium product for European prices. Remember when Fabio Aru called his Colnago “penis bike”?

Robin
Robin
22 days ago
Reply to  Fake Namerton

So what? That doesn’t say anything at all about how aero or fast the V4 is. Yours is just a statement of bias and opinion, not fact. Who cares where it’s made?

Veganpotter
Veganpotter
21 days ago
Reply to  Robin

The V4 would have to defy all known aerodynamic principals to be aerodynamically competitive with its tube shapes

Jay Ess
Jay Ess
22 days ago

Dumb comment. Bikes frames are the smallest piece of the aero puzzle. Wheels, clothing heck even handlebar shape makes a greater impact than the frame. So much of it is obscured by the rider that it’s really inconsequential.

Dinger
Dinger
22 days ago
Reply to  Jay Ess

The frameset is more important than that. It figures in to how the other aero components work together. I built a Madone 9 series over from a Domane RSL. Same wheels, same groupset, similar cockpit parts (had an aero section bar, went to the proprietary setup), and it made such a big difference that I have been unwilling to sacrifice it since when considering the next bikes I’ve bought.

Veganpotter
Veganpotter
21 days ago
Reply to  Jay Ess

The frame matters when everyone is using aero road helmets and skinsuits.

Deputy Dawg
Deputy Dawg
22 days ago

The skeptic wanders by wondering whether Colnago, Boonen, etc. all had a little chat about this publicity stunt beforehand…….

Doc Sarvis
Doc Sarvis
22 days ago

Meow!

rodegeek
rodegeek
22 days ago

ha ha!

Raggatip
Raggatip
22 days ago

Fair dues to Colnago.

+2km/h sounds like it needs backing up.

Veganpotter
Veganpotter
21 days ago
Reply to  Raggatip

It may get well be close to that on the TT bike. Definitely not that much in peloton drafting/wattage or climbing with their road bike. I bet it’s over 1kph slower riding solo at 40kph though vs an actual aero road bike with both bikes having 2 bottles mounted

King County
King County
22 days ago

It is weird he threw them under the bus like that. Unprofessional for a person in his position. He should post anonymously on boards and rip into the brand like we do.

Veganpotter
Veganpotter
21 days ago
Reply to  King County

He’s not a professional cyclist now, just like us Love seeing this!!!

Normanzo
Normanzo
22 days ago

Unless Hambini presides over test conditions, measurement and interpretation of data, it’s just a marketing play.

Anonymous
Anonymous
22 days ago
Reply to  Normanzo

Do people actually listen to that guy? I remember one time he claimed he used a 3D measuring arm to make a model of a Dura-Ace 9000 crankset. The model was an Ultegra 6800 model he downloaded and from grabcad and claimed as his own.

The guy has show he is willing to blatantly lie, fabricate data, plagiarize and steal for trivial reasons, just to boost his ego, stir up controversy and con his lemming followers. He is literally one of the least trustworthy people to listen to, but somehow people trust him when he says just trust me bro, the cycling media is lying to you.

Dr. Schlitz
Dr. Schlitz
21 days ago
Reply to  Normanzo

LOL. 50% of Hambini’s claims are unsubstantiated opinion, nothing more. Plus, the guy is a 100% jerk.

Hambini, aged 5
Hambini, aged 5
21 days ago
Reply to  Dr. Schlitz

It’s actually 69% unsubstantiated opinion and 123% jerk. Get it right, tvv@t.

Dr. Schlitz
Dr. Schlitz
20 days ago

Yup. And I don’t think his pen is actually working.

DaveJ
DaveJ
22 days ago

Hmmm… unlike those ‘other’ bikes, I’ve never heard of a Colnago steerer tube snapping, have you?

Veganpotter
Veganpotter
21 days ago
Reply to  DaveJ

I’ve warranties Colnagos for a couple broken steer tubes and stay cracks when I was working in shops. It happens to every company. That’s not what this is about though

JESUS VELAZQUEZ
JESUS VELAZQUEZ
22 days ago

Colnago in the past, has collaborations with Ferrari, and some extreme machines for TT’S and the hour record,

Syle
Syle
21 days ago

Easist way: just asking Adam Yates if his performance goes worse this year after switching from Ineos to UAE..

Gillescantin
Gillescantin
21 days ago

If I remember well Boonen called his Specialized bike a » piece of shit » …..! When his team went for the Us brand no ?

ERIC VAN BOCKERN
ERIC VAN BOCKERN
21 days ago
Reply to  Gillescantin

He said that about the Merckx.

Dr. Schlitz
Dr. Schlitz
21 days ago

Boonen is nuts. In last year’s TdF, a 2 kph deficit would equate to a 4.5% deficit relative to the average speed for the TdF. With a 4.5% speed deficit, Pogacar probably wouldn’t have made the top 10.

Mickey McMook
Mickey McMook
20 days ago

the Colnago V4RS Pog is riding is essentially a Giant TCR Advanced without the seatmast. Yes tube profiles are different but still make at Giant from their top-tier carbon fibre. Wonder if Tommeke & Co even knew that ? BTW Pog would win on a Huffy he is so good. UAE has been looking for a new bike sponsor but due to their new owners Chimera Investments ties to Abu Dhabi / UAE, they are stuck with Colnago. In particulare, Colnago has a outdated TT bike, no real aero bike (Vingy & Co are riding Cervelo’s superb S% even on mountain stages). Plus Zio Ernesto and his family were chucked out of the company last year so Colnago now has no soul. Boonen dreamed of riding a Colnago to victory at Paris-Roubaix, when the Colnago C-40 was truly an innovative, state-of-the-art bicycle. The boo-boos running Colnago now for the Emiratis are a joke…

Hitchings
Hitchings
19 days ago

If Tadej was 2km/h faster than he is now, cycling would be boring AF to watch.

Michael
Michael
18 days ago

A 4th gen frame against 5th gen aerodynamics?

Its not the frame, its the rider.

Maybe they’ll catchup with the V5RS, or skip 5th gen entirely and go right into the danger zone with 6th gen!

Kali
Kali
3 days ago

It looks like a handout from the deep pocket Team who want to chainge the bike.

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