electrical bike An iconic TT helmet from POC, an aero race quantity pocket and a light-weight bivvy bag by Alpkit
We come to the top of one other week and whereas the Tour de France could have completed, there’s no time for a break as a result of the WorldTour racing continues and the content material prepare retains on chugging.
After all, for those who missed any of our protection on the game’s largest race, there’s nonetheless time to compensate for it. Listed here are among the highlights:
Tour de France 2020 highlights
Away from the racing, there was nonetheless a lot occurring. In a current episode of the BikeRadar podcast, our mountain bike specialists, Tom Marvin and Seb Stott, mentioned whether or not spending cash on teaching moderately than your bike may be one of the simplest ways to ‘improve’ your using.
Tom additionally reviewed the “unashamedly quick” Cannondale Scalpel Hi-Mod 1 cross-country bike, and Alex Evans introduced us the primary entry of his long-term overview of the Yeti SB165. It’s received 27.5in wheels, and Alex is eager to see if the smaller hoops can nonetheless minimize it on the mountains.
Elsewhere, Matthew Loveridge took a have a look at the Merida Scultura Endurance 7000-E, an attention-grabbing, competitively priced highway bike in a brand new area of interest the cool children are calling ‘gravel-adjacent’.
In Bike of the Week, Jack Luke took a have a look at an extremely bling Trek Madone SLR, with a SRAM Purple eTap AXS groupset, a Undertaking One paint-job and an equally unimaginable £13,050 price ticket.
Lastly, I’ve been testing Favero’s Assioma Duo power meter pedals for a number of months now and have been very impressed. When you don’t thoughts utilizing a Look-style cleat system, there’s so much to love.
Now, although, let’s check out a number of bits of scorching new swag to land with us this week.
POC Tempor helmet
Sure, we all know this isn’t a brand new helmet. Lengthy-time readers can be effectively conscious that that is, in truth, fairly an outdated helmet.
Initially launched on the London Olympics in 2012 on the pinnacle of Sweden’s Gustav Larsson, those that have been round on the time could bear in mind it prompted fairly a stir. Even at a look, it’s apparent why; the design is sort of uncommon.
Whereas most time-trial helmets are designed to imitate some type of teardrop or aerofoil form, POC took a unique, extra holistic method and tried to make use of the helmet as a means of influencing the airflow over a rider’s shoulders in addition to their head.
It didn’t actually catch on with style aware roadies although, and whereas a number of individuals (us included) discovered it to be very fast in certain positions, it wasn’t with out its points.
In 2014, POC relented and released a more conventional time-trial helmet – the Cerebel – in response to feedback from the Garmin-Sharp professional team and a wider industry trend towards short-tail time-trial helmets (mainly thanks to Team Sky’s success with the Kask Bambino).
In recent years, the design has had something of a renaissance and reached an almost cult status in the UK time trialling scene, largely thanks to the influence of aero guru Dan Bigham and his disciples.
Most notably, the Danish men’s team pursuit squad (who were reported to be working with Bigham) demolished the world record wearing POC Tempors in February 2020, with Chris Boardman commenting the UCI should “ban them just for aesthetic reasons.”
Proving there are plenty of people who will happily wear anything if there’s a chance it will help them ride a bike faster, the discontinued helmet had become rarer than hen’s teeth, with second-hand versions occasionally popping up on eBay for well over the original RRP.
However, thanks to UCI rules surrounding the commercial availability of equipment used in its events, the Tempor is now officially back in production, and, naturally, I just had to get my hands on one.
I asked for the fluorescent orange colourway, of course, but it’s also available in hydrogen white if you want something slightly more subtle.
So, if you want to go a bit faster in a time trial (potentially) and don’t mind looking like a Stormtrooper, this could be the perfect opportunity.
As a recent addition to the BikeRadar team, I was proud to receive one of the few Sportful skinsuits we have in squad colours, and knew the first thing I needed to do was get a NoPinz SpeedPocket added.
The point of it is simple: it’s a clear pocket for holding race numbers. NoPinz can retrofit one to your existing skinsuit or you can buy one of NoPinz’ own skinsuits with a SpeedPocket pre-installed.
In the process of fitting the SpeedPocket, NoPinz can do small repairs or alterations to your skinsuit too, which is a great way to reduce the amount of kit that might otherwise end up in the bin.
Not only does the SpeedPocket deliver a potential aerodynamic benefit, by eliminating the possibility of extra drag from a poorly attached race number, it also prolongs the life of your delicate and expensive skinsuit by negating the need to use safety pins.
Though it’s obviously dependent on how good your number pinning was, NoPinz claims a rider using a SpeedPocket will typically stand to save around 8 to 9 watts at 30mph.
This version is sized for a RTTC sized race number, but NoPinz also offers SpeedPockets designed for single or double UCI race numbers, and for track racing numbers.
Alpkit Hunka bivvy bag
Now for something completely different.
At some point in the near future, I will be going on an adventure of sorts, taking on challenges well outside of my cycling comfort zone, all in the name of content.
One of these challenges will be to sleep outside in a bivvy bag for the first time in my life. To help make this a (hopefully) more pleasant experience, Alpkit has kindly sent me the latest version of its excellent Hunka bivvy bag.
Made from a 2.5 layer ripstop nylon, it has a waterproof rating of 10,000mm HH (hydrostatic head), a breathability rating of 10,000 MVP (moisture vapour perspiration), and weighs just 352g.
At a length of 215cm, it should be long enough to accommodate all but the tallest people, and it packs down to just 13x15cm, so is relatively easy to carry on the bike.
I’ve got the Chilli red colourway, but Alpkit also makes it in Kelp green or Lego blue if those are more your flavour.