The two short time trials in this year’s Tour de France could prove decisive to the overall result with Chris Froome hoping that his performances on this Pinarello Bolide will be enough to secure victory.
Chris Froome beat Rigoberto Uran by 51secs in the opening day’s individual time trial in Dusseldorf, and he beat Romain Bardet by 45secs. At the time of writing (after Stage 18), he is leading each of them in the general classification by far less than that.
In other words, Froome wouldn’t be ahead without the advantage he gained in the time trial. Okay, his tactics in later stages might have been different had he not already secured a lead, but those seconds have been important in shaping the race.
The penultimate day’s 22.5km time trial in Marseille is going to be equally important in deciding who takes the overall win.
We got about two minutes to grab a quick video of Chris Froome’s Pinarello Bolide before the first time trial. The mechanics were eager to move us on!
Pinarello says that the latest version of the Bolide, made from Torayca T1100 carbon fibre, draws heavily on lessons learned while putting together the Bolide HR, the bike that Bradley Wiggins rode to set the Hour Record.
The Italian brand altered the structure of the fork and the down tube has been redesigned with a concave mid-section that allows for a closer fit with the water bottle, smoothing the airflow in that area.
The brakes, designed by Pinarello, are integrated into the frame/fork design, the rear one with a cover that’s said to have derived from aircraft technologies. The bottom bracket is Italian thread, the fork dropouts are airfoil section, the rear dropouts are alloy and the Twin Force seatpost clamp is internal.
Unusually, the biggest objective Pinarello had in the redesign of the Bolide was to drop weight and it claims that the latest version is 350g lighter than previously.
Chris Froome’s bike is built up with Shimano Dura-Ace Di2 components although his ‘twin cam’ chainrings are from Osymetric.
That’s a Shimano Dura-Ace C60 wheel on the front fitted with a 25mm wide Continental Podium TT Pro Ltd tubular tyre. It’s a Pro Disc Wheel Textreme at the back, made from spread tow carbon.
The aerobar is from Most, Pinarello’s in-house brand. Chris Froome uses a lot of grip tape, even on the end of his shifters, to avoid slipping.
Mat has been in cycling media since 1996, on titles including BikeRadar, Total Bike, Total Mountain Bike, What Mountain Bike and Mountain Biking UK, and he has been editor of 220 Triathlon and Cycling Plus. Mat has been road.cc technical editor for over a decade, testing bikes, fettling the latest kit, and trying out the most up-to-the-minute clothing. We send him off around the world to get all the news from launches and shows too. He has won his category in Ironman UK 70.3 and finished on the podium in both marathons he has run. Mat is a Cambridge graduate who did a post-grad in magazine journalism, and he is a winner of the Cycling Media Award for Specialist Online Writer. Now pushing 50, he's riding road and gravel bikes most days for fun and fitness rather than training for competitions.