Boardman Limited Edition TK20 - tested
Chris Boardman, the name behind the Boardman bikes brand, switched overnight from a world of British Time trials with early starts, church halls, tea and great home made cake to world wide notoriety when he won a gold medal at the '92 Barcelona Olympics aboard a ‘fancy' Lotus manufactured aero machine.
Since then he's been a pro on the road and worked as an equipment guru for British Cycling but he has always had a soft spot for the velodrome.
As a nod to these roots, his eponymous brand has launched a limited edition of its triple-butted aluminium track specific TK20. Along with the required high bottom bracket and oversize tubing focusing on stiffness and steering accuracy rather than lightness, stainless steel plates reside either side of the rear-facing horizontal dropouts.
Drop-out plates prevent damage
Rather than damage the aluminium frame material when removing wheels to swap ratios at a track meet, these plates give knurled track nuts something to purchase without chewing into the softer alloy. Rear wheel security is further enhanced with tensioning setscrews to eliminate the chance of rear wheel slippage.
While most Boardman bikes are instantly recognizable due to black and yellow branding, this version gains gold stars - perhaps not literally, but it's usual branding cues have taken on board the colour of the medal won by Chris in the 1992 Barcelona Olympic 4000 metre individual pursuit.
Each bike is individually numbered
Thankfully, the model that the limited version is based on is worthy in its own right, meaning both the standard Track TK Elite and this TK20 possess a decent height bottom bracket with less than 60mm drop, so pedal clearance shouldn't be an issue on even the steepest of tracks.
The steep geometry track fork with only 30mm of offset will also make direction changes 'Jedi mind trick' sharp when combined with the 73.5 or 74 degree head angle (size dependant). Large flange, cartridge bearing hubs and mid-section rims shod with decent Vittoria clincher tyres mean it should roll plenty well for training and racing alike. With a drilling for a front brake, it's also possible to make it legal ride to the track or to your local hipsters' hangout.
Gentle reminders of CB's golden year
Available from September, and with only 92 available worldwide, these sub £999.99 bikes aren't likely to stay on the shelf. www.boardmanbikes.com has the details of where to get any pre-orders in.
Check out Boardmans track bike release earlier this year and our latest track bike test
This article was first published in the August 30 issue of Cycling Weekly. You can also read our magazines on Zinio and download from the Apple store.
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Founded in 1891, Cycling Weekly and its team of expert journalists brings cyclists in-depth reviews, extensive coverage of both professional and domestic racing, as well as fitness advice and 'brew a cuppa and put your feet up' features. Cycling Weekly serves its audience across a range of platforms, from good old-fashioned print to online journalism, and video.
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