Before I get started, I will mention an event that I am a bit late in reporting. The Santa Cruz Design + Innovation Center held a bicycle design event last Friday that sounds like it would have been quite interesting. If any of you were there, let me know how the discussion went. The Santa Cruz Design + Innovation Center also has an exhibition going on right now in the Atrium of the http://www.santacruzmah.org in Santa Cruz. The exhibit, which closes on the 22nd, showcases “innovative bicycle design and technology examples from Santa Cruz design studios and manufacturers over the last 25 years.” Sounds pretty interesting and admission is free, so if you are in Santa Cruz today for the 2nd stage of the Tour of California, you might want to stop by and check it out.
Speaking of the Tour of California, you probably won’t be surprised to hear that I have checking out the bikes from this year’s race online. I like time trial bikes in particular, so I was interested in the bikes that were used in Saturday’s prologue. There is no doubt now that Fabian Cancellara’s race winning Specialized Transition was fast, but I think it was also the best looking bike in the prologue. Those new Transitions, used by Saxo Bank and Quick Step, have a distinctive frame shape and I really like the top tube detail as it trails the stem. Of course, it is hard to pick a favorite from all the time trial bikes in the race. Check out the Road bike Action articles here and here to see more TT bikes from the different teams.
It is early in the racing season, so not every team is using equipment from their 2009 sponsors. Rock Racing wasn’t yet on their Kestrel time trail bikes. Instead, they rode Fuji D-6s (which are pretty slick bikes in my opinion). Alex Moos’ BMC featured Zipp wheels that were covered in DT decals. A few Team Columbia-Highroad riders had the nice looking Scott Plasmas that the team will use this year (like the one you saw in the RBA article), but most were still riding Giant TT bikes like the one pictured here (photo by Ken Conley). Well, actually according to the team, those bikes are not really Giants… they are branded “Highroad Techdev”. Hmm, they certainly look like Giants to me. For more on that, take a look at this CyclingNews tech article that aims to clear up any confusion.
Update 2/17/09: Read more about why Columbia-High Road team is not yet using Scott Plasma time trial bikes here at VeloNews.
Finally, I can’t post about time trial bikes without mentioning something that I am sure you have all heard several times at this point. Yes, Lance Armstrong’s Trek with a custom Livestrong paint job was stolen, along with 3 other Astana bikes, out of a team van Saturday night. I am pretty sure that the bike will turn back up. It can’t be that easy to unload a one of a kind time trial bike, especially when the theft is getting constant media attention. So keep your eye out on Craigslist or at you local pawnshop for a black bike with a big yellow “1274” on the seat tube. I am sure that Lance would love to have it back before the next time trial on Friday.