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Tour tech 2014: Marcel Kittel's yellow Giant Propel Advanced SL

The champagne from his stage 1 Tour win hadn't even lost its fizz before Marcel Kittel had a new yellow bike...

Cometh the yellow jersey cometh the yellow bike - It’s a tradition that’s as old as overnight delivery and quick drying paint. Marcel Kittel didn’t even have to wait for the next morning. 

Kittel's Giant Shimano team presented him with a new yellow enhanced steed before he’d even gone to bed after stage 1. Teams and their bike suppliers (handily enough the title sponsor in this case) plan for such eventualities as winning the first stage so Kittel’s wait for a yellow bike was probably as long as it took the Giant team liaison person to go and get it out of the boot of the car.

Most of the bike manufacturers who thought they had a rider in with a about of wearing yellow after the first stage will have prepared something earlier to capitalise on the marketing opportunity. Even now somewhere at the back of a Speciialized truck in Yorkshire there’s a 49cm yellow Venge - which we might be writing about now had yesterday’s sprint taken a slightly different course but now, like the ribbons on the cup for the losing team at the FA Cup final, will never see the light of day.

So what’s different about Kittel’s bike for stage 2? Well, it’s yellower. 

Giant say it is a stock Giant Propel Advanced SL frame. The rest of the spec is the same - full Shimano as you'd expect, you can get more detail on it here.  

Going around the team trucks at this year’s race the vast majority of riders are on stock bikes. One thing it will be interesting to see though is whether Kittel’s yellow bike will roll out with his usual saddle on it or the new one with yellow bits added that’s in the pictures released by Giant Shimano, riders being particularly particular about such things.

If all goes well for Kittel today he’ll be riding his yellow Propel for a few more stages - if not and the stage profile suggests not, we can expect to see another yellow bike in the peloton tomorrow and Marcel will be back on the bike he rode to yellow in the first place.'s founder and first editor, nowadays to be found riding a spreadsheet. Tony's journey in cycling media started in 1997 as production editor and then deputy editor of Total Bike, acting editor of Total Mountain Bike and then seven years as editor of Cycling Plus. He launched his first cycling website - the Cycling Plus Forum at the turn of the century. In 2006 he left C+ to head up the launch team for Bike Radar which he edited until 2008, when he co-launched the multi-award winning - finally handing on the reins in 2021 to Jack Sexty. His favourite ride is his ‘commute’ - which he does most days inc weekends and he’s been cycle-commuting since 1994. His favourite bikes are titanium and have disc brakes, though he'd like to own a carbon bike one day.

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