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TDF2015 Tech: Lampre Merida’s Warp TT & Tinkoff Saxo’s Specialized Tarmac & Shiv

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Absent from Tinkoff Saxo’s pits were the new Venge ViAS, instead relying on the Tarmac and Shiv for the stages we saw in person, but they do use the Roubaix and standard Venge when the course dictates.

Specialized managed to keep them rolling on house-brand wheels and tires (mostly), but the cranks and cockpit were supplied by FSA and saddles by Prologo. Drivetrains were all Shimano Dura-Ace Di2…


Mounts for SRM cycling computers were fitted to K-Force and SL-K bars and stems.


For most days, the team was on Roval CLX40 tubulars with Specialized Allround 2 tubular tires.


Contador gave his a last minute pressure check before rolling out for Stage Two. His water bottles were marked with A.C. on the top, as were the other team riders’, making it quick and easy to get the right drink to the right person during the race.


Since Specialized doesn’t make a full disc wheel, the Shiv TT bikes were fitted with Vision disc rear and tri-spoke front carbon tubulars.


Note the small bronze colored magnet stuck to the disc to trip the speed sensor on the chainstay.


Glued to the TT wheels were a Specialized Time Trial 2 28x24mm tire. It’s not listed on their website, but it’s not the first time Specialized has made prototype TT tires for their athletes. They’ve even done it in clincher form, too. We’ve reached out to the brand to see if it’s something new or just a one-off and will report back as we get info.

UPDATE: Just heard back from Specialized, here’s what they had to say about the tires:

Etixx-Quickstep and Tinkoff-Saxo are our two biggest places to develop tires. Athletes like Tony Martin and Zedenek Stybar have been critical to understanding the characteristics that athletes are looking for in all conditions.

If the guys are running a tire that is not listed in the current offerings it will be shortly… although, we are constantly working on tire compound with them even it the tire’s hot patch doesn’t show the change.


They, too, hid the Di2 box under the saddle, shielding it from the wind. This one shows what the GPS tracker looks like installed, check here to see the mounting bracket without it.



We didn’t get a chance to shoot the road bikes, only the Merida Warp TT sleds for Stage One, but they did give us a peek at one aftermarket upgrade.


The bikes were outfitted with Fulcrum Racing’s Speed Disc and XLR-80 front wheels with Continental tires, FSA Vision bar and extensions, Prologo saddle and Rotor Q-Rings with Flow crankarms.


Shifting was handled by Shimano Dura-Ace Di2 with a Berner carbon fiber cage and oversized lower pulley fitted to it. They use 13t and 15t wheels to save about 6g of drag, but they do add a bit more weight compared to a stock rear mech. Check them out in more detail here.

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