After several years aboard a Cannondale, Peter Sagan has switched to Specialized with his move to the Tinkoff-Saxo team this season. Photos released by the team show Sagan riding a Venge, the company’s aero road bike as favoured by sprinters such as Mark Cavendish.
Tinkoff-Saxo are sticking with Specialized for another year, but as we reported recently, they have some new equipment suppliers. Out goes SRAM to be replaced by Shimano Dura-Ace Di2 groupsets with FSA, who also supply handlebars, stems and seatposts, providing K-Force cranksets. Also gone are Zipp wheels, they've been replaced by Specialized’s own Roval wheels with S-Works Turbo tyres.
Most of the Tinkoff-Saxo team, including team leader Alberto Contador, will choose to ride the latest iteration of the Tarmac. Each size that the new Tarmac is sold in has been developed independently, brought about by a feedback from Contador himself who felt that the rear-end of the 52cm frame he favours was too stiff, hampering handling and performance through corners. There are other, more immediately obvious changes, such as the integrated seat clamp. A disc version of the Tarmac was also developed simultaneously, and road.cc recently tested the range-topping S-Works model.
The Venge that we reckon Peter Sagan will ride for much of the season (though he’ll swap to the Roubaix for its smoother ride and bigger tyre capacity for the spring Classics he’ll very likely be targeting this year) was first launched in 2011 and has become the default choice for sprinters and breakaway specialists.
When we visited Specialized UK recently to view the 2015 range of bikes, there was no sign of an updated Venge, but given it has been around for a few years and aerodynamics is a field of bicycle design that has advanced greatly over the past few years, could there be a new model coming along this year? We’ll have to wait and see.
Equipment changes aside, there is also a new paint job. Last year they had a yellow/blue/black combination, this year it looks like they’ve dropped the blue and gone with a black and yellow combination, with yellow S-Works decals on the down tube and a stripe running along the fork and lower half of the top tube. There are colour matched parts from FSA and Prologo as well.
While Sagan has been riding a team edition frame at the early season training camp these photos were taken it, it’s highly likely he’ll be riding a custom painted frame at some of the bigger races, a custom he has become used to with various bespoked Cannondale bikes over the years. While Sagan has been riding a team edition frame at the early season training camp these photos were taken it, it’s highly likely he’ll be riding a custom painted frame at some of the bigger races, a custom he has become used to with various bespoke Cannondale bikes over the years.
Another change for Peter Sagan this year is the change of footwear. He was riding Sidi shoes and Speedplay pedals the last couple of years, but he has been wearing Specialized S-Works shoes and using Look Keo clipless pedals (an official sponsor of the team) at the early season training camp. An interesting change because pros, like mere mortals, can be quite fussy which clipless pedal system they use, and is often a specification divorced from sponsorship pressures.
Other details, that Peter Sagan is used to, includes the SRM Powermeters. He’ll have to get used to a new saddle, switching from Fizik to Prologo.
David worked on the road.cc tech team from 2012-2020. Previously he was editor of Bikemagic.com and before that staff writer at RCUK. He's a seasoned cyclist of all disciplines, from road to mountain biking, touring to cyclo-cross, he only wishes he had time to ride them all. He's mildly competitive, though he'll never admit it, and is a frequent road racer but is too lazy to do really well. He currently resides in the Cotswolds, and you can now find him over on his own YouTube channel David Arthur - Just Ride Bikes.