‘It would be nice if my bikes were in order’ - Bora-Hansgrohe rider slams his own team

Cian Uijtdebroeks was not pleased with his equipment at the Chrono des Nations

Cian Uijtdebroeks time trialling at the Vuelta a España 2023
Uijtdebroeks at the 2023 Vuelta a España
(Image credit: Getty Images)

Bora-Hansgrohe rider Cian Uijtdebroeks took aim at his team after Sunday’s Chrono des Nations time trial, saying “there is always something” wrong with equipment. 

The 20-year-old started the event in the hope of improving his record against the clock, and finished 14th, over four minutes behind the winner, Josh Tarling (Ineos Grenadiers). 

Afterwards, Uijtdebroeks explained that he had had trouble with both his main bike and his spare bike during his effort. 

“After 10km, my shifter came loose and I was immediately allowed to change bikes,” he told Het Nieuwsblad and HLN. “That spare bike turned out to be completely out of order. Then you can ride as fast as you want, but that’s not cool. 

“I came here to learn, but it would be nice if my bikes were in order.” 

The young Belgian’s criticism lay more with his team than the equipment he was using: a Specialized S-Works Shiv TT bike, the same machine that helped carry Remco Evenepoel to World Championships glory in August, and second at the Chrono des Nations. 

“There is always something to do with the material at Bora,” Uijtdebroeks said. 

Asked about the team’s approach to time trialing, he said: “It’s something we really need to improve.

“There is still a lot of margin, especially in terms of aerodynamics and the construction of the bicycle itself. I have the power. I weigh 65kg and I can pedal at almost 400 watts on average over an hour. Still, the entire framework needs to be fine-tuned. We just lose a lot with that.

“This winter, we will have to spend a lot of time in the wind tunnel and on the slopes to finally get my position a bit decent.” 

Next season, Olympic time trial champion Primož Roglič will join Bora-Hansgrohe, bolstering the team’s Grand Tour squad. One of the Slovenian’s first challenges is likely to be defending his Giro d’Italia title, where he will have to overcome two time trials in the 2024 race route

Uijtdebroeks, too, would like to launch his own Grand Tour GC bids in the future. “We will see whether Bora can offer that,” he said, “or whether we have to look for a place where they do.” 

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