Tom Pidcock will ride the cyclocross World Championships in Arkansas this weekend on the new Pinarello Crossista F, where he will be aiming to add the rainbow bands to the junior and under-23 versions and starts as one of the big favourites.
With no Wout van Aert or Mathieu van der Poel the 22-year-old Brit is still not counting his chickens, but told Cycling Weekly that compared to the Olympics, when he won gold in the mountain bike cross-country, the pressure seems “relatively tranquil.”
Once the 2020/2021 cross season had ended and Pidcock had signed with Ineos, Pinarello began work on a completely new cyclo-cross frame to update the existing Crossista, which was starting to look a little dated.
According to Pinarello, the process started early in spring 2021 with Pidcock and his team, led by coach Kurt Bogaerts, visiting Pinarello HQ in Treviso. After an initial test of the existing Pinarello Crossista, Pidcock began working directly with Pinarello’s R&D team to develop the bike.
Pinarello says it was starting from a good base with the old bike, but its designers sought to improve the design of the top tube and of the front triangle, with the goal of providing Pidcock with a faster transition and a more comfortable hold for shouldering and running.
The new bike's top tube has a similar arcing shape to that of the Pinarello Dogma F, but it has a more contoured underside to fit the shape of a shoulder.
Some additional improvements - unspecified in Pinarello’s press release - were also made to the bottom bracket height and the frame’s geometry, “offering better control and a more precise riding position, allowing Tom to take full advantage of his peerless bike handling skills.”
New internal cable routing and water draining holes were specifically designed at Pidcock’s request according to Pinarello.
The first prototypes were tested in Treviso in early September 2021, with a second version delivered just in time for the Brit’s cyclo-cross debut in Boom on December 4. Since then, he has achieved five podiums and took his first victory at a men’s elite World Cup – which was also the first for a British rider – in Rucphen on December 18, followed by another victory on January 2 in Hulst.
Pinarello says that period of testing and racing led to an evolution in the frame’s carbon lay-up before the final bike went into production in time for Pidcock’s bid to win the 2022 World Championship in Fayetteville.
According to Pinarello, the bike comes in at a weight of 7.39kg in the team’s Shimano Dura-Ace Di2 race configuration (here photographed with the older 11-speed version), on Shimano Dura-Ace C40 tubular wheels and the MOST Talon Ultra bar.
The commercial version of the Pinarello Crossista F will be available from Q4 2022, in the Tom Pidcock replica colour, as well as two additional colours which will be unveiled later in the year.
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Simon Smythe is Cycling Weekly's senior tech writer and has been in various roles at CW since 2003. His first job was as a sub editor on the magazine following an MA in online journalism (yes, it was just after the dot-com bubble burst).
In his cycling career Simon has mostly focused on time trialling with a national medal, a few open wins and his club's 30-mile record in his palmares. These days he spends a bit more time testing road bikes, or on a tandem doing the school run with his younger son.
What's in the stable? There's a Colnago Master Olympic, a Hotta TT700, an ex-Castorama lo-pro that was ridden in the 1993 Tour de France, a Pinarello Montello, an Independent Fabrication Club Racer, a Shorter fixed winter bike and a renovated Roberts with a modern Campag groupset.
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