In early 2012 when disc brakes were really coming on strong for road and cross, TRP was working on a project called HyWire. Combining the braking power of a full hydraulic system with built in Shimano Di2 shifting compatibility, HyWire was looking like a very attractive option. That was until Shimano went 11 speed and left companies like TRP in the dark. Without support for the new shifting standard the trail for HyWire went cold.
In the mean time TRP has been working on awesome road and cross disc brakes like the Spyre and HyRd, leaving us to think the Di2 project was dead in the water. That is, until we spotted this latest prototype on one of Ben Berden’s Raleigh RXC Pro Discs. Appearing to be a modified version of their HyLex single speed hydraulic levers, it looks like TRP might be closer to an 11 speed Di2/hydraulic lever set than we thought…
Our first reaction when walking past Ben’s bike on the trainer was why is he riding singles speed levers on a geared bike?” Closer inspection revealed what looks to be a modified Shimano Climber’s switch built into the inside of a TRP Hylex lever.
This particular bike was set up with an FSA SL-K crankset running a single Wolf Tooth Components chainring in a 1x set up. That of course means there wasn’t a shifter on the left brake hood. Is this TRP’s answer to CX1? Or perhaps a front shifting version is also in the works – that remains to be seen.
Out back is a standard looking Shimano Ultegra Di2 rear derailleur and an 11 speed Shimano cassette.
The system was running what looks like standard TRP Hylex calipers which we’re told that Ben actually prefers the feel of. Supposedly once more Di2/Hylex systems are produced Ben will run the system more often because his bikes will all have the same spec. As it was, Ben was racing the version above on Friday for the Cincy3 opener at Harbin Park. Also note what appears to be a hydraulic quick disconnect on the rear brake hose.
Overall Berden had a pretty good weekend on his Raleigh Clement RXC Pro Disc finishing 4th on Friday, 5th on Saturday, and finishing it out with a strong 2nd to teammate Jamey Driscoll on Sunday.