Specialized at the Giro d'Italia
With the 102nd edition of the Giro d’Italia due to start on Saturday 11 May we’re looking forward to seeing some of the stars of pro cycling roll down the start ramp on their Specialized machines. Piloted by the likes of Deceuninck-Quick Step’s Italian fast man Elia Viviani, teammate and hilly classics specialist Bob Jungels and Bora-Hansgrohe’s Polish GC hope Rafał Majka, we’re likely to see them first across the finish line when the action heats up too. There’s also British interest in the form of James Knox, proudly representing Cumbria in the land of pasta, pizza and gelato.
Specialized are honoured to support Bora-Hansgrohe and the all-conquering Deceuninck-Quick Step teams as they go for glory in the year’s first Grand Tour. Whether racing in the mountains, sprinting for the finish line or going full-gas in the time trial, Specialized gives them the advantage in races that can be decided by fractions of a second.
Slice through the air
The 2019 Giro d’Italia kicks off with the first of three individual time trials in Bologna, a short 8.2km burst. The race also features a 34.8km individual TT on stage nine and climaxes in fair Verona with a final 17km solo ride against the clock. Expect to see the riders aboard their frighteningly fast Shiv TT machines on these stages.
With five UCI World Championship Time Trial gold medals, seven Tour de France TT stage wins, as well as many other Grand Tour stage wins, the S-Works Shiv TT is one of the most decorated bikes in history. In the race for absolute speed the FACT 11r carbon Shiv TT Module is the perfect canvas to construct your wind-cheating TT rig. Kitted out in our innovative TT helmets, expect to see the riders hitting warp speed around the Italian streets.
The race for the line
Italian sprinter Elia Viviani will be as motivated as ever to dominate the sprint stages of this year’s event. He won his first ever Grand Tour stage at the 2015 Giro, while last year he won four more stages and the points classification. He might not have it all his own way though, with Bora-Hansgrohe’s German whizzkid Pascal Ackermann sure to challenge him when things get fast and frantic.
When it comes to going fast at the pointy end of a race, Signor Viviani and Herr Ackermann know their onions, which is why you’ll see them aboard their light speed Venge bikes. The result of years of testing in Specialized’s wind tunnel, the aerodynamic and supremely responsive Venge is the fastest road bike on the planet (or any other, most likely).
Everything about the Venge screams one thing – speed. The most aerodynamic bike on the road has also lost almost 500g compared to previous models, with Specialized’s engineers using lessons learned during the development of the Tarmac to create a speed-demon that is no slouch in the hills either.
The race to the top
Grand Tours are often won and lost in the high mountains, and this year’s Giro puts plenty of big lumps of Italian granite between the riders and ultimate glory. Leaping onto a Tarmac when the road points upwards gives the pros, and you, an immediate advantage over the competition. The Tarmac is stiff and compliant in all the right places, with weight shed and geometry dialled specifically to annihilate the competition.
It’s not often that you get something for free, but working with our professional riders on the 2019 Tarmac range, all demanding aero improvements with every bike, we’ve managed to provide free speed to any and all riders. Without taking anything away from the hallmarks of the Tarmac design, a bike offering optimum ride quality in all terrain, we’ve tweaked the fork, seatstays and seatpost to create a bike that is approximately 45 seconds faster over 40km compared to other lightweight bikes in the same category.
Something for everyone
Not all of us are born with the power to get to the start line of a Grand Tour but even so, there’s a Specialized road bike out there for everyone. Collaborating with both male and female professional teams means that technology and developments trickle down through our whole range of road bikes. From the Allez, an aluminium all-rounder, to the female-specific cobble-muncher the Ruby (and its brother the Roubaix) all Specialized road bikes are designed to give you exactly the performance you need.
Keep your eyes peeled for the big winners in Italy – we’re pretty sure we’ll see Specialized bikes and equipment taking some big wins this month. And when you’re motivated to hit the roads yourself, come down and see us – we’ve got everything you need.
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