CHIGASAKI STYLE**The Tour de France.
by: Naoki Sakai

Interest in this year’s Tour de France is higher than expected with COVID hanging over the riders and less spectators for the biggest road race in the world.  The domination of Team Ineos and Pinarello could be at an end.  Last year’s champion Egan Bernal is still strong, and can still win the tour, absolutely.  But this year, instead of team dominance for the Pinarello team, there is a major challenge from other teams and in particular, Jumbo Visma, on Bianchi, the Dutch team with riders Primoz Roglic and Tom Dumoulin, while missing Steve Kruijswijk to injury, losing their triple threat, but an extremely strong team with twice podium topping Wout Van Aert and others.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Pinarello back down from the triple threat, as they did not include Chris Froome and Geraint Thomas, going all in on Egan Bernal, the young phenom and defending champion.  It the end to Chris Froome’s reign for Pinarello and Geraint Thomas, as well.  The team is stronger without them as support for Bernal, but the psychological weight must have been lifted from other teams chasing for the grand tour win. 

 

 

 

 

 

 

It was of interest to me as the mountain stages began that both Jumbo Visma and Ineos Grenadiers decided to go with different wheels than the Shimano they are contracted to.  Visma went with Corima.  Ineos, as they did last year, are going with Lightweight, in the mountain stages. 

 

 

 

Bianchi Oltre XR3 size 53, shimano 105.  335000 yen +TAX.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Both teams also are going with caliper brakes, over the heavier disc.  I’m not sure if it is just weight that is the difference, it could well be many of the riders prefer the control of the caliper brakes they’ve used for years.  That is just speculation on my part, but I find caliper brakes are easier to control speed and disc tend to be overly sensitive, so maybe some riders do, as well. 

 

 

 

 

elite bottle. 800 yen +TAX

 

 

To lighten the Bianchi Oltre XR4, Bianchi has gone with black paint over their familiar celeste color.  It is said that the black paint weights 80 grams less than the celeste.  Molecules or something…  The wheels from Corima are approximately 1220 g., vs. Shimano C40 at 1384 g. and C60 at 1496 g.  The Lightweight come in at a nifty 1120 g.

 

 

 

selle sp01 titanium superflow. 19000 yen +TAX

 

 

 

All the lightness may mean something, but there is a 6.8 KG limit to how light the bicycles can be, UCI rules.  So while each bicycle wants to come in as light as possible, if it goes under the 6.8 KG, they have to add weight to get to that number.  At any rate, the competition so far has been excellent.  Pinot has dropped and Dumoulin has become support for Roglic, who leads the Tour, just ahead of a pack of great riders in Bernal, Quintana and others.  My take is Dumoulin is going to help Roglic to the cruise thru the Champs D’Elysses, for a Bianchi win over Pinarello.  We shall see in a couple of weeks!!  We have Tour related products in stock.  Come see them or just talk the Tour! Hope to see you soon!! 😀