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Tour de France Tech: Up Close With Omega

July 25, 2011
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The Omega Pharma-Lotto team has had a great year aboard their Canyon bikes.
                                     Photo: Yuzuru Sunada


Here’s the bike being ridden by one-time green jersey contender Phiilppe Gilbert. And yes, the folks from SRM confirmed that they finally have a Campy friendly unit that will hit the market soon.


The Aeroad was first introduced during the Vuelta a Espana last year when it won a stage and it has maintained a winning record this year from the Classics through the Tour de France. Canyon bikes are sold via the Internet only and are still only available in Europe, but we hear by next year they will finally be in America.


The Aeroad frame has some sweetly curved tube sections and a rear mount seat binder.


The Campagnolo Record shifters are accompanied by Ritchey bars, stem, seatpost Mavic wheels and Continental tires.


One of the most proven names in the Pro peloton is the Selle Italia Flite saddle.


With its over-sized jockey wheel and carbon sideplate, no, this isn’t a stock Campagnolo set-up rear derailleur.


Philippe Gilbert’s TT bike is fitted with a massive carbon cranks to ensure that every ounce of power that goes into pedal is transferred into forward movement.


Here’s the stash of back-up bikes from last year with the most telling difference being the re-routed cables on the new bike which are drilled into the top of the top tube behind the stem.


The bottom bracket is nicely built up to provide the maximum amount of stiffness.


Positioning is key in the TT so some riders had custom handlebars made up for them. Grip tape (versus traditional handlebar tape) is a popular addition a number of riders.


Following in Cadel Evan’s footsteps when he rode for the team, Sebastian Lang also runs the extreme handlebar position that runs the stem from out of the center of the head tube.


Even before the Tour de France was one day old the pits were rife with speculation as to whether Philippe Gilbert would stay aboard the Omega team for 20112 and beyond. There was actually talk about whether the team itself would carry-on. Gilbert’s riding gear consists of Vermark clothing, Northwave shoes, Rudy Project glasses and a Specialized Prevail helmet.


This is Canyon founder Roman Arnold and he spent the first week of the Tour trying to dampen the Gilbert trade rumors, while also thinking about how to raise a cool million or so Euros to retain the fast Belgian. At times, Roman could also be found strolling through competitors pits checking out the wares and other riders.

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