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Evolution of time trial bikes

To end this blog I will get back to the start of time trialling innovation and present you a couple of revolutionary bikes (at that moment).

During the 1980s, the idea of aerodynamics and its advantages in time trials began to take hold. Frame builders began to experiment with different frame configurations and tube shapes. During this period, wheel technology took a giant leap forward with the introduction of disc wheels. By the mid- to late ‘80s the time trial bike began to show signs of its developing specialization. Standard drop bars had been replaced with upturned bullhorn bars, frames now had radically forward sloping top tubes that were made possible by smaller front wheels and seat angles became steeper to allow the rider to ride with lower handlebars. While the roots for specialization had been made for the last decade, it was LeMond’s 1989 Tour de France victory that truly started a revolution. In the last twenty years since LeMond’s victory, the time trial bike has revolutionized the bicycle industry, and despite attempts by the UCI, has remained the driving force behind bicycle innovation.

The following pictures will give you a nice idea of time trial evolution.

GREG LeMOND’S BOTTECCHIA (1989)

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CHRIS BOARDMAN’S LOTUS SPORT PURSUIT (1992)

lotus_bike

MIGUEL INDURAIN’S PINARELLO ESPADA (1994)

 CN-Giro-Pin_Espada_05

BJARNE RIIS AND JAN ULRICH’S PINARELLO’S (1997)

After this bike the UCI introduced new guidelines that would alter time trialing dramatically.

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LANCE ARMSTRONG’S LITESPEED BLADE (1999)

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BMC TT01 (2008)

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TREK EQUINOX TTX (2009)

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CERVELO P3 (2009)

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Specialized Shiv TT (2010)

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