Tour de France: What makes a sprinter’s bike?

When you compare the build of a sprinter against that of a climber it’s instantly obvious that they are going to need a different bike – how do we put this politely… because there’s just more of them.

That extra muscle is what enables them to make the rapid burst from the bunch at the end of the race – but it also merits the use of a stronger bike that doesn’t flex as much.

The secondary consideration here is that the bike needs to be aerodynamically profiled to allow it go faster. So sprinters want a stiff yet aerodynamic frame, but sadly these 
two requirements are quite opposed 
to each other.

Sagan doesn’t quite conform to the traditional view of a sprinter – the Slovak rider’s no slouch when the ground points up – but one thing you can’t doubt is that he has a formidable kick and can also climb too. For this reason he’s riding the Supersix Evo from Cannondale’s range.

We’d describe the bike as stiff and light with sublime handling – aero it’s not, but that’s not Sagan’s way of winning and his physique reflects this.

SRAM sponsors the Cannondale 
team with the Red groupset and supplies a custom coloured version with green highlights. Despite this sponsorship the team prefer to use SRM power cranks, rather than SRAM’s Quarq power meter. They are also the development squad for Kenda tyres, so get the prototypes to try out.

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This article was first published in the June 20 issue of Cycling Weekly. Read Cycling Weekly magazine on the day of release where ever you are in the world International digital edition, UK digital edition. And if you like us, rate us!