With all the usual trade show distractions of jumping mountain bikers and unsurprisingly rather glum-looking young women having their torsos spray painted, the Cycling Weekly staff had to get down to some serious work with a deadline fast approaching and if we were to do justice to Eurobike in next Thursday’s issue.
The usual discussion ensued as we caught our ferry across Lake Constance in the early morning; do we indulge our personal preferences for exotic and expensive kit – and in Austin Mills we even have an Ironman triathlete among us now – or, as Mike Hawkins our Technical Editor put it, “keep our feet on the ground for everyone who rides a road bike.” Possibly because he knew he was the most likely to succumb to the allure of a fine piece of expensive engineering.
Engineer Richard McAinsh joined Italian handlebar specialists 3T from car racer Ferrari and set to work on some new directions including this genuinely innovative Meta chainset. Ironic that the UCI are now seeking to intervene in bike component approval in much the same way that the FIA has in Formula 1. There’s a story in the works, folks.
Passoni had the nerve to show this exquisitely worked and retro-looking machine in the shadow of the Campagnolo stand, featuring their own carbon non-indexing down tube shifters working an otherwise bang-up-to-date 2011 Super Record groupset. Wood rims by Ghisallo and a rather nice Selle Italia saddle made up the brown and natural-titanium look. It’s not over yet, but so far this is our bike of the show.
Talking of titanium, the Dutchmen at Van Nicholas have redesigned the rear dropouts on all their road frames to this clever new design that saves weight while increasing the surface area of the welds.
This is Marcela Karasova who works for Scott in the Czech Republic. She was busy showing off a demonstration version of the new F01 heavier-but-stiffer-and-more-aero frame that had red aerofoils attached to represent the chopped off sections of the frame members that would otherwise contravene UCI 3:1 regs.
While Cervelo basked in the glory of their $9,900 660 gram R5ca ‘Project California’ frame winning a Eurobike Gold Medal – BeOne showed this new Raw carbon frame with a still feathery weight of 940 grams and a price of about 15% of the Cervelo. Chain Reaction Cycles will be selling it from October complete with a fork, headset and seatpost. Remember when under a kilo for a frame seemed like fantasy?
We’ve seen consummate pros Eddy Merckx and Alberto Contador working the crowds today but they weren’t as warm and engaging as Jens Voigt who chatted to everyone in multiple languages and even indulged us with his “shut up legs” catch phrase for the benefit of the Cycling Weekly iPhone. According to our host Peter Slater of Science in Sport, Voigt was instrumental among the Saxo Bank pros in helping the development of the mini version of the Go Bar. “They had requested something that could be eaten in one bite that also tasted like natural food.”