A broken chain on the Koppenberg ended Cancellara?s chances at Flanders this year. Upset, this was the first time the bike had been used in anger but at least he took it on the chin.
Interestingly, SaxoBank is one of a couple of teams to swap groupsets from the new Shimano Dura Ace 7900 to SRAM. Fitted with a Red groupset, Cancellara chose to use an FSA 38-tooth inner ring for the cobbled climbs with an 11-23 cassette.
SRAM has replaced the titanium cage on the front mech to stainless steel as Force, to give a crisper change under load. SaxoBank has also opted to stick with the Specialized S-Works BB30 crank, something you won?t find on all the Quick Step bikes.
This year?s Classics season also sees the introduction of a heavier but much stronger Zipp 303 wheelset. With a wider bridge, larger aero bulge and more carbon layering, this rim is sure to see the Classics through.
The front end is an all-aluminium affair and Cancellara uses a long 140mm stem by Specialized rather than the Sponsored FSA. The heavier but stronger FSA Energy bar gives a little more security over carbon at the front too.
With both the Saxo BAnk and Quick Step teams on the Specialized Tarmac bikes, the American manufacturer was always going to enjoy plenty of success at the spring classics this year. In the end, this bike won Flanders, Roubaix and Liege-Bastogne-Liege
Zipp?s new 303 Roubaix wheel, don?t tell anyone but these are Veloflex tubulars
38-tooth inner ring for the cobbled climbs. Pictures by Graham Watson and Luc Claessen/ISPA photo