New SRAM 1x road groupset claims first victory

Alistair Brownlee races single ring version of SRAM Force raced to victory at London round of World Triathlon Series

Despite not really being intended as a groupset for racing, the road version of SRAM’s 1x single ring groupset has already notched up its first professional victory in London this weekend, after Alistair Brownlee took the honours in the third round of the World Triathlon Series.

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The flat course around Hyde Park was good testing ground for the single ring SRAM Force 1 setup, with Brownlee opting for a 52 tooth chainring at the front, paired with an 11-26 cassette at the rear. The rear derailleur is a X-Horizon mid-cage option, which would be able to cater for anything up to a 42-tooth cog at the back if required.


SRAM Force 1 equipped on Brownlee’s custom painted Boardman AiR 9.8s (Photo: BrakeThrough Media)

As for the bike itself, Brownlee was riding a Boardman AiR 9.8 in a custom red, white, and blue Union Flag paintjob. The frame was paired with matching Zipp 404 Firecrest tubulars topped with Continental tyres, and colourful, if questionable, handlebar tape and hoods.

>>> Road bike groupsets: a complete buyer’s guide

And as a final note, for anyone who was worried, we’ve scoured the Cycling Weekly editorial code of practice surprisingly we aren’t breaking any rules by reporting on triathlons.


No need for a left shifter with SRAM 1x (Photo: BrakeThrough Media)


The rear derailleur is designed to accommodate anything up to a 42-tooth sprocket (Photo: BrakeThrough Media)


The flat course meant Brownlee didn’t need a wide range for his cassette (Photo: BrakeThrough Media)


Custom Zipp 404s to match the blue and red frame (Photo: BrakeThrough Media)