World Superbike Champion Jonathan Rea’s custom Vitus ZX-1

A special Vitus bike for the Superbike champion

Jonathan Rea MBE has won the Superbike World Championship four times in a row from 2015 to 2018 and has the highest ever number of race wins. Based in Northern Ireland, he’s also a keen cyclist, using his bike as one of his main forms of training off the Superbike circuit.

To celebrate, Vitus has presented him with a custom model of its range-topping Vitus ZX-1, with the paint scheme inspired by his title-winning Kawasaki Ninja ZX-10RR.

Logos mimic those on Rea's Kawasaki (Gee Milner)

As well as replicating the Kawasaki’s green paint job as highlights on the raw carbon frame, Vitus has added superbike specific touches, with a ZX-10RR logo on the chainstay, JR1 logos on the seat tube and #Team65 on the top tube.

SRAM Red eTap AXS groupset runs on CeramicSpeed low friction bottom bracket bearings (Gee Milner)

According to Rea: “Firstly, I’m so proud to become a part of the Vitus Bikes team and when the opportunity came to do a bike build together I was super excited to see the possibilities.

“I’ve been a keen cyclist now for many years and have enjoyed riding bikes all over the world. Superbike Racing is so physically and mentally demanding, I use cycling as a huge part of my training program!”

Rea out training on his new Vitus ZX-1 (Gee Milner)

The Vitus ZX-1 is finished with Prime’s range-topping BlackEdition 50mm carbon clincher wheels, with Schwalbe Pro One MicroSkin TL 25mm tubeless tyres, a Prime carbon cockpit and Prime carbon bottle cages. To match the premium theme, there’s a SRAM Red eTap AXS 12-speed groupset, running on CeramicSpeed EVO386 bottom bracket bearings and with a SRAM Red Quarq AXS DUB power meter.

At 176cm tall and 70kg in weight, Rea rides a Vitus ZX-1 in size 52cm, with the bike including its Look Kéo Blade pedals weighing 7.5kg.

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Paul Norman

Paul started writing for Cycling Weekly in 2015, covering cycling tech, new bikes and product testing. Since then, he’s reviewed hundreds of bikes and thousands of other pieces of cycling equipment for the magazine and the Cycling Weekly website.

He’s been cycling for a lot longer than that though and his travels by bike have taken him all around Europe and to California. He’s been riding gravel since before gravel bikes existed too, riding a cyclocross bike through the Chilterns and along the South Downs.