Froome spotted using device called The Turbine after losing the yellow jersey on stage 12

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If you saw Chris Froome‘s post-race interview after stage 12 of the Tour de France, you might have been distracted by what looked like a yellow nose ring up the Team Sky rider’s nostrils

With Team Sky noted for their ‘marginal gains’ approach to racing, this nose furniture is just another small piece of the puzzle in the quest for a fourth Tour de France win.

The device is called The Turbine, and dilates the nostrils to increase airflow through the nose, allowing the wearer to breathe more efficiently. Creator Rhinomed claims that nasal airflow is increased by an average of 38 per cent while wearing it.

>>> Chris Froome loses yellow jersey to Fabio Aru as Romain Bardet wins Tour de France summit finish

This apparently means that the device reduces the user’s feeling of breathlessness and helping to expel CO2 from the body.

Froome first tested the nose ring during the 2014 Vuelta a España, even tweeting about its effectiveness. He then continued to wear it for much of the 2015 Tour de France, where he took his second Tour win.

It’s the latest in a long line of marginal gains we have seen introduced to the sport by Team Sky, with ideas ranging from taking custom-made bedding to races to Richie Porte eschewing hotels to stay in a motorhome during the 2015 Giro d’Italia.

A number of other pros have also used The Turbine, with Jack Bobridge employing it during his unsuccessful Hour Record attempt in January 2015.

  • Rider_X

    I think you are missing the point. Reducing the energy and effort required to breath means that the athlete’s metabolism is less taxed for any given effort. A small gain, yes, but keep add it to the other “marginal gains” and a performance gap starts to emerge.

  • Brendan Power

    You’re absolutely right, of course; nasal airflow is not “THE” limiting factor for athletes. It is, however “A” limiting factor and, as we all know, Sky are the masters of marginal gains, or Kaizen. Even if that wasn’t he case, the fact that the user, Chris Froome, states that it makes a difference would be enough.

  • highrouleur

    Pretty simple physiology really, it may increase nasal airflow by 38% but getting oxygen in isn’t the limiting factor for athletes. Transporting the oxygen to the muscles is the issue and these things do the square root of diddly squat to help there. Ergo, about as much use as a magnetic bracelet, but no doubt plenty of people will go out and waste their money on them after seeing Chris Froome perform so well at le Tour “because” of wearing one…

  • Brendan Power

    It looks as though ‘highrouleur’ has carried out some in depth research on this; perhaps he should share his findings with Team Sky to save them from wasting their time.

  • highrouleur

    Yeah, but it’s bollocks though innit?

  • poisonjunction

    Thanks for the update, I did think it was an unlikely place for face jewellry!

  • Jay Kay

    wonder if it’d help with my deviated septum…nasal breathing is such a chore