Spotted at the Tour: A new Van Rysel aero bike, S-Works shoes, helmets, and more

The Performance Process newsletter does TDF tech via Instagram.

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Hey folks! Back with a lightweight optimised Performance Process newsletter this week as we ready ourselves for the tech extravaganza the Tour is likely to provide. Let’s kick it off with some early Tour tech…

Weekly gainz

🚲 Van Rysel now have an aero bike spotted here in some pre-TDF team training on Dectahlon-Ag2R’s Instagram reel under both Sam Bennett and Oliver Naesen. The new bike is clearly a dedicated aero bike and a new addition to Van Rysel’s road range. Most notable are new aero-profiled forks, which are much deeper and thinner, as well as a much deeper head tube. The new frame also has dropped and extremely profiled seat stays, especially at the interface with the seat tube. The new bike seems to utilise the same Deda barstem as the team and Van Rysel currently uses on the RCR Pro.

Stay tuned for more photos from the Tour’s opening stages in the coming days.

⛑️ Who needs TDF media creds when you have an Instagram account? This new POC helmet also popped up on the ‘grams and looks pretty neat. The design is both very POC and somehow also less POC than usual. Clearly, ventilation is the target here, expect to see the team mix and match between the Procen Air aero helmet and whatever this new helmet is called between flat and mountainous stages.

Going off-piste for a second, I must mention EF Pro Cycling’s new partner/sponsor, Oatly. Yeah that Oatly of pandemic oat drink fame. I mention it not just because they’ve done the very “sponsorship activation” kind of thing in renaming their team training camps as “Oatly Performance Camps,” (which does also admittedly have a touch of Performance Process to it) but mostly just because as avid consumers of the Oatly fluids, our household is finally doing it’s bit for pro cycling sponsorship ROI.

🕵️ It’s hard to believe Remco is lining up for his first Tour. If he is a little nervous, he may be hoping “everything is right” when he puts on his new S-Works shoes. He was seen yesterday with these interesting new shoes from Specialized featuring just a single BOA dial upper retention system coupled with a wrap-over velcro strap lower.

🪖 Intermarché-Wanty seemingly also have some new Uvex helmets, one vented and one more aero-focused. The vented one (seen left on Louis Meintjes) looks a lot like the Specialized Prevail with long vents running the length of the helmet with an interlocking rib or bridge-like structures.

🕴️ OK, triathlon products don’t feature here all that often, but when it is a tri-suit from SwissSide and friend of the podcast JP Ballard, it catches our attention. Ballard, an aero expert, had teased some new aero apparel on our three-part series with him this year, and this tri suit seems to be the first of that making its way into the market. With a claimed 5-15watt improvement over competitors and particular attention paid to thermal management, I for one am hoping SwissSide turn their attention to cycling suits next.

🤐 Ballard also teased some aero tyres on those podcasts earlier this year. One might assume those tyres are about to make an appearance. In fact, one might even be visible on Sam Bennett’s front wheel.

📱Strava opticians rejoice (or cry 🤷‍♂️) dark mode is here!

As I said, light one this week with TDF madness upon us. Let the gods of tech be kind and pray for plenty of stage-start area geekery in the days to come.

Finally, the pod

Finally, this week’s Performance Process podcast is actually last week’s pod. We published a great episode with Lachlan Morton early to avoid the Tour madness. Morton tells us of his plans to ride around Australia, his Unbound bike, and generally gives an insight into his powers of versatility.

Until next time …

That’s all folks! All that’s left to say is thank you for reading the newsletter, listening to Performance Process and an extra thanks to all of you who have signed up already as Escape Collective members.

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Until next time … Trust the process.

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