On the day that Spanish team Movistar announced Juan Jose Cobo the winner of the 2011 Vuelta a España has signed a two-year contact following the demise of the Geox setup, component makers Rotor have launched a special batch of their 3D cranks in not just the usual red anodised finish but with a laser-etched design to celebrate the victory in their national tour. Needless to say, Cobo was using Rotor cranks and chainrings machined by the Madrid-based company.
If Rotor had sent us this press release any earlier than December 30th we like many British cycling fans might have felt too mortified to post it on account of JuanJo's Vuelta victory - agonisingly close victory - over 'our boys' Chris Froome and Bradley Wiggins.
Stiff upper lips and sheer professionalism however have pulled us together to report that the 'bison' design is inspired by Cobo's nickname of 'El Bisonte' - he's a big lad - which in turn comes from the prehistoric cave paintings of his native Cantabrian region. The cranks will be individually numbered 1 - 1,000 for worldwide sales and shipments have already started with our UK batch due to arrive in Britain January 7th.
Rotor are also keen to remind us that Cobo's Vuelta win on their relatively new 3D cranks comes on top of their use by Thor Hushovd to win the Tour de France points jersey in 2009 and the World Championships in 2010. The BCD is 110mm which means they can be used with 'compact' chainrings sizes down to 34 teeth and the lengths available are 170, 172.5 or 175mm. Price is £299 per pair.
Sadly for Rotor, the new deal with Movistar means 'El Bisonte' will be on Campagnolo's Super Record EPS cranks for 2012, along with Alejandro Valverde whose ban finishes with effect from January 1st 2012.