While the most obvious differences are the paint jobs, the Movistar and Katusha teams are using pretty much entirely different components on their Canyon Ultimate CF SLX framesets. Everything from the groupset, to the wheels, down to the saddles and handlebars differ entirely on the Movistar-branded steed belonging to Mikel Landa compared to Alex Dowsett's bike in Katusha-Alpecin colours.
Team Movistar are sponsored by Campagnolo, who supply also supply their Bora carbon wheels in various depths depending on the type of stage. Apart from the odd finishing touch such as his name on the top tube, Landa's bike is built up very similarly to most of his teammates' bikes.
The Ultimate CF SLX in Team Movistar colours is actually available to the public in rim or disc brake versions, so you can own almost exactly the same bike yourself. Movistar’s bikes are built up with Campagnolo’s Super Record 12 speed EPS groupset, with the Power2Max power meter integrated into the crankset. Llanda is running 53/39 chainrings and an 11/29 cassette, with 170mm cranks.
The bar and stem combo is canyon’s own H36 cockpit, which Landa has chosen in a 40cm width with a 110mm stem. It has a port on the underside for housing the junction box for the Campagnolo EPS electronic groupset to keep things tidier, and the bars are finished with Fizik performance bar tape in Movistar colours. The team use Fizik saddles, with Landa opting for their Antares in white.
The wheels are Campagnolo’s Bora Ultra in a depth of 50mm, and mounted to those are a set of Continental's Pro Ltd tubular tyres, not available to the public of course. The entire team are using rim brakes on all of their bikes, so there’s not a disc rotor in sight at the Movistar camp.
Meanwhile over at Katusha-Alpecin, many of the riders have embraced hydraulic disc brakes including Alex Dowsett, who is riding this very different version of the Canyon Ultimate to the one we saw at the Movistar camp. Dowsett recently took to Instagram to praise the Ultimate as his preferred all-round race bike over Canyon’s Aeroad thanks to the extra comfort and lightness, plus saying it gives him more confidence while cornering and descending.
Dowsett’s bike also has a 12 speed electronic groupset, but this one is SRAM’s Red etap AXS system. With cassettes that have a 10 tooth smallest cog this makes for quite different gearing ratios to other performance road groupsets, with the 50 tooth large chainring and 10 tooth cog on the cassette appearing on this bike actually providing a slightly bigger top gear than a typical 53/11. He's running 170mm cranks on the chainset, and there’s an integrated Quarq power meter.
Zipp are another Katusha sponsor, with their NSW 454 carbon wheels with the signature sawtooth rim shape appearing on this bike. Like Movistar, Katusha-Alpecin also use Continental tyres with the Pro Ltd tubulars mounted to these wheels in a 25mm width.
Canyon’s H36 cockpit makes another appearance here, with Dowsett opting for 40cm wide bars.
Unlike the Movistar Canyon Ultimate, unfortunately Canyon haven’t made one available to the public in Katusha colours, a burgundy red in the rear triangle with the frame fading to a brighter red at the head tube and forks.
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After cobbling together a few hundred quid during his student days off the back of a hard winter selling hats (long story), Jack bought his first road bike at the age of 20 and has been hooked ever since. He was Staff Writer at 220 Triathlon magazine for two years before joining road.cc in 2017, and reports on all things tech as well as editing the road.cc live blog. He is also the news editor of our electric-powered sister site eBikeTips. Jack's preferred events are time trials, sportives, triathlons and pogo sticking (the latter being another long story), and on Sunday afternoons he can often be found on an M5 service station indulging in his favourite post-race meal of 20 chicken nuggets, a sausage roll, caramel shortbread and a large strawberry milkshake.