The latest race content, interviews, features, reviews and expert buying guides, direct to your inbox!
Thank you for signing up to The Pick. You will receive a verification email shortly.
There was a problem. Please refresh the page and try again.
Although Chris Froome (Israel Start-Up Nation) might not be in contention for the GC this year – particularly after getting caught up in the chaos of the opening stage – his Factor Ostro VAM still bears more customisations than that of most team leaders
Wheels and brakes
Perhaps most notably, Froome has eschewed the wheels of Factor’s in-house component brand, Black Inc, opting instead for the famously feathery Lightweight Meilensteins. Froome previously rode the rim-brake version of these wheels during his time with Team Ineos Grenadiers – although Ineos has since switched to Princeton CarbonWorks wheels.
The front brake caliper presents quite an interesting item. The brightly coloured ring on the outside of the piston housing is telltale Magura, but the German brand specialises much more in disc calipers for mountain bikes than it does road.
One caveat to that: Magura manufactured the brake calipers used in the groupsets from the Spanish brand Rotor – which are used in conjunction with drop-bar levers. Whether Froome is using a caliper from one of Rotor’s groupsets or whether he’s using a straight-up mountain bike caliper, we can’t tell from the photos.
Presumably, the change to the brake caliper is to combat the issues with rubbing rotors and pads Froome has previously aired his frustrations about. What makes this component choice a little strange is that for some reason the rear caliper has been left as a standard Dura-Ace item.
Chainrings and power meter
From this side-on shot, the distinctive silhouette of Froome’s Osymetric chainrings is clearly visible. The jury is still out on just how much of a benefit non-round chainrings really offer – they are rare within the pro peloton.
But Chris Froome has been a long-time proponent of the design and he used them to great effect during the 2018 Giro d'Italia, winning on the fearsome climb of the Monte Zoncolan and dramatically taking the pink Jersey on stage 19.
Although Israel Start-Up Nation has a partnership with Canadian power meter manufacturer, 4iiii, it appears as though Froome has chosen to opt instead for an SRM Origin carbon crank power meter.
Although Froome has the option of an integrated handlebar/stem, he has instead opted for a tradition two-piece setup – but still with a Black Inc handlebar, suggesting the choice might not be completely down to ergonomics preference. Although, of course, it could be that Froome wanted to have control over setting the roll of the handlebars.
The cockpit is still fully integrated with the cables passing through the stem, so at least some of the aerodynamic penalties associated with a two-piece setup will have been mitigated.
Thank you for reading 20 articles this month* Join now for unlimited access
Enjoy your first month for just £1 / $1 / €1
*Read 5 free articles per month without a subscription
Join now for unlimited access
Try first month for just £1 / $1 / €1
Get The Leadout Newsletter
After winning the 2019 National Single-Speed Cross-Country Mountain Biking Championships and claiming the plushie unicorn (true story), Stefan swapped the flat-bars for drop-bars and has never looked back.
But his favourite rides are multiday bikepacking trips, with all the huge amount of cycling tech and long days spent exploring new roads and trails - as well as histories and cultures. Most recently, he’s spent two weeks riding from Budapest into the mountains of Slovakia.
Team USA announces all-star lineup for the UCI Gravel World Championships
With 23 elite riders led by Swenson and Stephens, Team USA hopes to claim a medal at the second-ever event in Italy
By Kristin Jenny Published
95% of the time I ride by myself - here's what I love most about solo cycling
From choosing my own route and pace to the chance to simply switch off, here are my top six reasons for cycling solo
By Tom Couzens Published
Chris Froome 'absolutely not' worth multi-million euro salary says his team boss
The four-time Tour de France winner was not selected for this year's Tour de France for performance reasons, Israel-Premier Tech boss Sylvan Adams says
By Chris Marshall-Bell Published
Chris Froome not selected for Tour de France 2023
38-year-old misses out on 'ultimate goal' as Israel-Premier Tech confirm eight-man squad
By Tom Davidson Published
Back to Africa: Chris Froome on going back to his roots, his future and cycling's new generation
He’s come full circle, but is there time for another loop? We talk to the four-time Tour champ about his and African cycling’s future
By Adam Becket Published
'Rough day' for Chris Froome after crash and punctures kill best chance of victory since 2018
The 37-year-old was up the road in a solo move for over 50km at the Tour du Rwanda on Thursday
By Adam Becket Published
Chris Froome highlights dangers of long Covid after battle with virus
Four-time Tour de France champion warns of cardiovascular impact and says his VO2 max took a hit after illness
By Tom Thewlis Published
Chris Froome labels WorldTour relegation a ‘death sentence for many teams’
Four-time Tour de France winner says UCI points system needs overhaul as Israel-PremierTech face relegation from the WorldTour
By Tom Thewlis Last updated
Chris Froome still holds out hope for fifth Tour de France win
Israel-Premier Tech rider says the dream is "always there"
By Tom Davidson Published