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Pro Bike: Steven Kruijswijk's Bianchi Oltre XR2 race bike for the Giro d'Italia

Video: Giro d’Italia race leader Steven Kruijswijk talks through his Bianchi Oltre XR2

Yesterday we featured the specially lightened race bike used by Steven Kruijswijk of the Lotto NL Jumbo team, who is currently leading the Giro d’Italia and wearing the iconic Maglia Rosa jersey. 

Today he swaps back from the Specialissima that he rode during the stage 15 mountain time trial and will start today’s stage aboard his regular Bianchi Oltre XR2. It’s the Italian company’s flagship race bike and has been in use for a couple of years now.  Yes, we know this video is a bit of an advert, but it's still interesting.

Review: Bianchi Oltre XR2

Stage 16 features a lot of climbing, and while there are no extreme measures to save weight on the bike like we saw on Sunday, it does look like Steven will be riding a slightly modified setup. The main change is the shallower section Dura-Ace C24 front wheel, which saves a bit of weight over the regular C50 he’s using at the back.

Other than some pink bar tape, the bike looks fairly regular, with a Shimano Dura-Ace Di2 groupset and Pioneer power meter. Steven has the optional Di2 shifter buttons on the centre of the handlebars, saving him having to change hand position to change gear. He also uses a carbon fibre handlebar, an FSA Plasma one-piece handlebar and stem.

The frame isn’t the lightest, with the company claiming an 895g weight when it first launched, which is some way off the 700-750g of some of the lightest frames in the peloton - that's why he swapped to the newer Specialissima on Sunday, which weighs a claimed 780g. 

Bianchi weaves some carbon magic to add stiffness to the frame, using something called X-Tex technology to add extra carbon stripes to the head tube and bottom bracket. While stiffness was clearly high up the design list, there are a few aerodynamic details, such as the shaped seat tube and seat post and a head tube that has been dramatically pinched in at the middle, to reduce the frontal surface area. 

- Pro bikes: The pursuit of lightness – Steven Kruijswijk’s Bianchi goes on a diet 

Will the bike help Steve retain the pink jersey today?

David worked on the tech team from 2012-2020. Previously he was editor of 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

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