Tour de France Tech: Fourth of July Stage 3 Special

Team BMC Racing has a full stable of bikes for both road and TT use. For stage three both the new Impec (ridden by Steve Morabito) and Team Machine SLR01 (ridden by Cadel Evans) were put into service.

Team Garmin-Cervelo also has a full stable of bike options available for their riders to choose from. David Zabriske chose the radical new aero road bike, the S5. So far, few among the pool of journos collected find the bike to be all that good-looking, but it is new and perhaps will grow on everyone – race wins should help!

The Cervelo S5 takes the concept of internally run cables to a new level by drawing the cables into the top of the top tube. The dropped downtube acts as an aero enhancement.

The S5 retains the massive chainstays that, like the P4 inspired faired rear wheel, have become a Cervelo signature design. The S5 seatstays also handily shield the rear brake for more aero efficiency.

Zabriske runs the shorter Fizik Ares TT with an X-Tra grip no-slip strip on his road bike. Compared to the 300mm long Arione road saddle, the Ares is 235mm long.


Mavic has a long history of spending long hours chasing new wheel technology and there was a bit of pre-Tour hoopla about some new aero wheel tech from the French wheel maker. In the end it proved to be perhaps more clever than substantial – it was a paper thin foam strip that sealed the junction between the rim and the tire sidewall on the CC80 wheel. As undetectable as it was, the UCI was made aware of it which of course led to…

Just after the Garmin team bus arrived at the start today a group of Mavic techs hurriedly showed up with a flat head screwdriver in hand and starting the peeling process.

It was most likely not the sort of public display that the French wheel company was hoping for, but with the continuing uncertainty of how the UCI could or would respond (with a supposed rule that they could penalize riders and teams retroactively), Mavic did the right thing and took of the potentially offending product.

And within a brief five minutes or so, Mavic’s foam strip technology was bundled up and whisked away. maybe next year?

Alexandre Vinokourov broke out his S-Works Tarmac SL4 that were mounted up with a set of the very trick French made, 12 spoke Corima Aero+MCC carbon rims.

The conical hub/spoke interface was especially impressive. The spokes have an integrated magnet.

BTW, citing his familiarity with his “old paint” Specialized Tarmac SL3, Alberto Contador has opted to not ride the all-new SL4 that Specialized just introduced. However, HTC-Highroad rider Matt Goss was so envious of those chosen to ride the new bike that he actually parlayed his race winning talent into just enough muscle as to work the personal SL4 bike away from the visiting (Specialized R&D chief) Chris D’Luisio.

From the handlebar tape to the cable housing, Olympic champion Sammy Sanchez is running full-on gold bling with his Orbea Orca.

As with the Selle Italia saddle, and …

…derailleur jockey wheels, KMC gold chain and skewers.

Here’s what Euskaltel’s standard Orbea race bike looks like.


Following his perfect performance on the opening stage when he not only won the yellow jersey, but also the polka-dot climber’s jersey and the points green jersey, Philippe Gilbert lost the yellow in the TT, but retained the green jersey.

Sky’s Geraint Thomas is wearing the white jersey for the highest ranked young rider.

By virtue of his second place finish on stage one, Cadel Evans became the recipient of the climber’s polka-dot jersey.

The man, the myth, the legend – Thor Hushovd. Resplendent in yellow as always, Thor would keep the jersey following stage three after his top five finish which came as a result of his hard effort to deliver teammate Tyler Farrar for the win.

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