Wiggins' go-faster kit
The other products that helped Wiggo get that gold... including what you can't see
We’ve already given you the details of the UK Sport frame and fork that Bradley Wiggins rode to time trial glory but here’s the story of other specialist equipment that he used.
It’s pretty well known that Wiggins uses non-round chainrings from O.Symetric. The idea, in brief, is that the effective size of the chainring varies depending on where your legs are in the pedal stroke. You are pushing a smaller gear through the deadspots at the top and bottom of the pedal stroke, and a larger gear when the cranks are near horizontal – where you can produce most force. Make sense?
You’re not allowed to call the rings oval or elliptical, by the way. O.Symetric call them a TwinCam design.
Whether or not you’re convinced by the evidence that they improve power output and efficiency, we can see sales booming, particularly because Chris Froome uses O.Symetric as well.
The rest of the groupset looks like standard Shimano Dura-Ace mechanical. It’s interesting that both the front and rear brakes are positioned conventionally and exposed to the wind. Ever more time trial bikes come with a front brake that’s sheltered behind the fork legs and the rear one behind the bottom bracket.
That looks like a Hed H3 front wheel that Wiggins is running there but we’re not sure about the rear disc. The handlebar set up is a custom option.
The helmet, like the frame and fork, is a UK Sport design. It’s the Aero Helmet as shown on the UK Sport website with Wiggo’s mod roundel added. The rules state that the equipment has to be commercially available so UK Sport are obliged to sell it. However, they say, “The equipment... is manufactured in the UK to order by hand consequently lead time from order to delivery can sometimes be long.
“Items such as the frame, forks, and helmets were developed using cutting edge techniques, this R&D was funded by UKS and British Cycling. Although most of this expenditure has been absorbed by the GB Team, the very low volumes of equipment produced, the construction methods outlined above plus the use of the very best materials means the price of these items is in line with their specialist nature.”
In other words, you’ll have to work pretty hard to get a price, you’ll have to save up, and it might take a while. But it is available. Definitely.
You can’t see Wiggins’ shoes because he has Adidas shoe covers over the top to reduce drag, but we’re reliably informed that he raced in Bonts – Bont Zeros, to be precise. They are the shoes that he used for his Tour de France win too (although he got a yellow pair for riding into Paris).
Wiggins is a big fan of the Australian brand, despite them not being an official sponsor of Team Sky. The Zeros have a fully-mouldable carbon monocoque sole that’s very thin – just 3.6mm. The EVA insole is mouldable too while the uppers are laminated silver glass-fibre. They have a lace closure with an aero cover over the top although Wiggins obviously believes he can reduce drag still further with the shoe covers.
Bont give the weight of the Zeros at just 170g per shoe. If you want a pair, they’ll cost you £390 from Saddleback.