What the pros ride: Jordan Sarrou
In the second of our series looking at what Specialized athletes ride, we turn our attention from the road to the mucky stuff. We’re now in the realm of mountain biking and where better to go than the current men’s cross country world champion Jordan Sarrou?
The 28-year-old Frenchman is a ground-breaking rider. In Leogang, Austria last year, Sarrou was the first rider to take the rainbow stripes off Nino Schurter since 2015. Now on the Specialized Factory Racing team, 2021 has already proven to be a big year for Sarrou.
With the Tokyo games postponed to this year, 2021 is all about Olympic cross-country gold. He will no doubt face stiff opposition from the likes of Mathieu van der Poel, Mathias Flueckiger and Tom Pidcock, but he certainly has the machine for the challenge.
Jordan Sarrou’s World Champion Bike
What better way to celebrate last October’s achievement than by presenting Sarrou with a beautiful custom painted S-Works Epic? As a junior, Sarrou won races atop Specialized MTBs, so this stunning Epic is a return to the 28-year-old’s roots.
The first thing that stands out on the bike is its unique rainbow colour scheme. The same design can be found on the bikes of other world-topping Specialized athletes and is a great way to link their achievements.
The world champion Epic is packed full of lightweight XC parts, making it the perfect racing machine. The bike has the redesigned BRAIN suspension controlling the front end, which means that it can be locked out on smooth surfaces without having to reach for a lever. SRAM provide the groupset as well as their powerful Level brakes and an AXS XX1 drivetrain. It also has a SRAM blackbox chainring with integrated power meter. Roval have provided redesigned lightweight wheels that help to keep the bike’s overall weight down. Long story short, it’s a speed machine that gets the best out of Sarrou’s extensive abilities.
You too can benefit from the incredible S-Works Epic. The bike had countless design hours put into it and the result is a ride that mixes hardtail efficiency with full-sus speed and capability. Made from weight saving FACT 12m Carbon with BRAIN suspension and a SRAM XXX1 Eagle AXS groupset, this bike ticks all the boxes.
The Epic is an out and out racer that handles like a dream thanks to the Position-Sensitive Brain and RockShox' SID SL Ultimate chassis. To match this newfound speed and handling performance, we tasked Roval with creating a new Control SL rim to help the Epic outperform all other challengers. The results speak for themselves. As you can see, Sarrou uses this red liveried S-Works Epic as a training bike and occasionally races on it too.
Fit for a champion
At the Albstadt round of the Mercedes-Benz UCI MTB World Cup, Sarrou wore a pair of new S-Works EXOS EVO shoes. At just 231 grams, the shoes were perfect for the 20-minute short track dash that preceded the main cross-country race. The Specialized design team developed a Dyneema® layup to reduce the weight of the upper while maximising the shoe’s strength and pliancy, resulting in an all-terrain shoe with none of the weight.
When not in the EXOS EVOs, Sarrou has been sporting a white pair of S-Works 7 XC Mountain Bike Shoes. These utilise the same Dyneema® material and have an ergonomically designed sole that’s proven to boost power, increase efficiency and reduce the chance of injury. It does this by optimising hip, knee and foot alignment thanks to Body Geometry technology. What more could a world champion ask for?
Rubber side down
Tyres are an Epic’s best friend and you need the right ones for the job if you’re going to get most out of the bike. This is where Specialized’s XC tyres the Renegade, Fast Trak and Ground Control come in. Developed for all-out performance, they provide grip, reliability and speed whether you’re pacing it up hills or sending it down twisting routes whatever the weather or condition of the trail.
Jordan Sarrou’s kit
As for the rest of his kit on race weekend, Sarrou likes to mix and match. During short track races he dons the more aero S-Works Evade helmet with ANGI crash sensor. He then switches to the super lightweight Prevail II Vent for superior cooling when racing cross country. Sarrou usually pulls on a pair of trail gloves to race in, but sometimes opts for the more water-resistant Men’s Prime Series Waterproof gloves when the conditions warrant it.
It’s safe to say, everyone in the Sarrou household has been gripped by rainbow fever, not least Jordan’s cat Paco.
To find out more about the bikes and kit mentioned in the above article, head down to one of our stores.
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