Icons of cycling: Miguel Indurain's Pinarello Espada

The Italian answer to Chris Boardman’s Lotus superbike was Pinarello’s finest hour

Indurain and the Espada
in full flight on the track. Photo: Graham Watson

The 1990s was the golden era of the aerodynamic carbon monocoque. After the adoption of the material by cycling in the late 1980s, bicycle designers quickly realised they had carte blanche to create whatever shape they found to be most aerodynamic, no matter how outlandish.

At least that was until the Union Cycliste Internationale (UCI) in 2000 enforced its 1996 Lugano Charter, banning any bike without the traditional diamond-shaped frame.

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Simon Smythe

Simon Smythe is a hugely experienced cycling tech writer, who has been writing for Cycling Weekly since 2003. Until recently he was our senior tech writer. In his cycling career Simon has mostly focused on time trialling with a national medal, a few open wins and his club's 30-mile record in his palmares. These days he spends most of his time testing road bikes, or on a tandem doing the school run with his younger son.