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Tour Tech 2016: Peter Sagan’s Specialized Venge ViAS

Peter Sagan wins the second stage of the Tour de France aboard this stealth black Specialized Venge

Peter Sagan wins the second stage of the 2016 Tour de France and takes the yellow jersey, the first time in his storied career, and here’s the actual race bike, a Specialized Venge Vias, he rode to victory. 

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Peter Sagan is racing Specialized’s Venge ViAS, the US company’s updated aero road bike that was launched at the beginning of the 2015 Tour de France. He isn’t riding the sparkly custom painted bike, designed to celebrate his World Champs jersey, that he has been racing all season. Instead, he has opted for a matte black paint job that saves approximately 100g, because apparently, even he wanted to ensure his bike was as light as it possibly can be. Yes, you have to pay for those sparkles. 

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A key change to the Venge introduced just days before the race, is an update to the novel integrated aero brakes that are so unique to the Venge. We spoke to Specialized engineers who were over from Morgan Hill assisting the team mechanics with installing the new brakes, and they talked us through the changes, which they have been working on for the last few months. 

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The new updated brake is the one on the right, with a longer spring and new bushing

Based on rider and mechanic feedback, the brakes now feature brand new Igus bushings from a German company, in place of the previous brass bearings. Specialized.

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This change is said to improve lever feel and improve durability. Another key change is a longer spring in the front brake, which is also said to contribute to the performance.

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He’s riding Roval CLX64 Rapide deep section carbon fibre wheels, decorated with the rainbow stripes of the World Champs jersey, and rolling on CeramicSpeed bearings. Tyres are Specialized’s own S-Works Turbo Gripton in a 24mm width. 

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A Shimano Dura-Ace Di2 groupset with optional sprint shifters, an SRM power meter with 172.5mm crank arms and 54/42 chainrings.

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And customised CeramicSpeed jockey wheels with #terminator detailed on them, a nod to one of his nicknames earned over the years, this one because apparently he had a knack of  his fair share of wheels and tyres as a result of his power and strength during his five stage wins at the Tour of California a few years ago. 

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The frame is a stock 56cm with a 140mm stem and Specialized’s own aero handlebar, with all the cables routed inside the bar and stem and going straight into the frame. An SRM mount has been 3D printed to fitted to the unique face plate of the Specialized stem. Sagan uses regular 172.5mm crank arms. 

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Equipment sponsors have supplied some customised components. Look has produced a custom pedal with Peter Sagan’s logo graphic, Prologo has designed a Scratch saddle with a custom design, using the same pattern as featured on his world champs Venge. 

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As well as supplying the jockey wheels and wheel bearings, Danish company CeramicSpeed also supplies the external bottom bracket. Yes, even a frame as advanced as the Venge uses a traditional bottom bracket. 

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Will the bike sprout some yellow parts for stage three on Monday? We'll have to wait and see...

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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