Disc brakes now safe? Pro posts video to try and make you think again

A video on Twitter by Dutch rider Reinier Honig shows the result of what happens when water is poured onto disc brakes.

See more

Disc brakes may now have rounded edges and used among the professional peloton once again, but a video on Twitter by a Dutch rider reveals that they can still pose a danger.

Reinier Honig, who rides for Austrian Continental team Vorarlberg after joining from Roompot-Oranje Peloton in the winter, tweeted a video showing what happens when water is squirted onto disc brakes that have been used recently.

>>> Disc brakes: everything you need to know

As the water hits the brakes, steam immediately rises, showing the intensity of the heat in the brakes. Team Sky's Wout Poels, a friend of Honig, quoted the tweet and asked the UCI for comment.

Fran Ventoso's injury at Paris-Roubaix last year, alleged to have been caused by disc brakes when the rotors weren't rounded, prompted the UCI to ban the braking mechanism with immediate effect.

But with safer designs now introduced, they are permitted once more in the peloton and have already been raced to victory, most notably by Marcel Kittel at the Dubai Tour.

However, if Honig's video is not just a rare example and is indeed a common occurrence, it heightens the possibility of another disc brake-related injury. Hot metal could burn a rider in the event of a crash or a pile-up.

It is worth noting, though, that after a sustained period of braking, such as on a long descent, rim brakes are also extremely hot.

Chris Marshall-Bell

Chris first started writing for Cycling Weekly in 2013 on work experience and has since become a regular name in the magazine and on the website. Reporting from races, long interviews with riders from the peloton and riding features drive his love of writing about all things two wheels.


Probably a bit too obsessed with mountains, he was previously found playing and guiding in the Canadian Rockies, and now mostly lives in the Val d’Aran in the Spanish Pyrenees where he’s a ski instructor in the winter and cycling guide in the summer. He almost certainly holds the record for the most number of interviews conducted from snowy mountains.