Have Pedal Heaven come up with the best marginal gain of this year’s Tour Series: an F1-style pit board?
The team, largely comprised of part-time riders, have been the surprise package of this year’s series thus far. After last night’s seventh round in Croydon, they sit third overall, 15 points off series leaders Madison-Genesis.
And while pitboards are commonplace in the big-money and high-tech world of motor-racing, Pedal Heaven’s DS Tim Elverson says he cannot believe other squads haven’t used a pit board on a regular basis over the event’s six editions.
“I believe it’s helped us, and it strikes me as blindingly obvious,” he said. “I came into cycling from motocross originally, and a pitboard was the only way to have rider-team communication. It’s the same in crits: when you’ve got 50 or so riders in a bunch flying past the pits, all getting yelled at by their team managers, you’ll struggle to get any messages across.”
When CW first spotted the board in action at the Ryde Tour Series round in mid-May, the majority of the information was basic – largely time gaps between any escapees and the peloton. That has changed during the course of the event.
Elverson added: “We’ve started using coded messages on it as well to make sure other teams don’t just read it to pick up our tactics!”
But if it has proved that useful, why haven’t more teams adopted it?
“Maybe there’s an element of the bigger teams not wanting to copy something that a non-UCI team does,” he said.
Marcin Bialoblocki’s individual victory in Croydon helped his One Pro Cycling squad take the team win on the night and move to within two points overall of series leaders Madison-Genesis.