This is Ganna’s galactic bike in the hour record

It is not only a sporting event, but also a technological showcase. The gigantic rear wheel on the bike Francesco Moser (1984), the washer parts installed in the mount of Graeme Obree (1993), the mythical ‘Espada’ by Miguel Indurain (1994) or the Superman handlebar that he used Chris Boardman (nineteen ninety six). All this is part of the history of the hour record, an emblematic test that explores the limits of human effort, in addition to technical advances. All of this went a step further at the Grenchen Velodrome (Switzerland) on October 8, the day on which Filippo Ganna (Italy, 26 years old) became the fastest cyclist on the planet by smashing the hour record that 50 days earlier his partner in the Ineos Dan Bigham set (55.548 km/h) with an unprecedented mark: 56.792 km.

Before the portentous performance of the Giant of Verbania, only Boardman had been able to reach 56 km/h in this competition in 1996 and with a bicycle considered by the UCI as ‘non-conventional’, which speaks of the impeccable exercise that the Italian completed. “Reaching this incredible goal is fantastic for me and for all the Ineos Grenadiers staff who worked for a long time to get to this result. Next time maybe I’ll try it some other part of the season with fresher legs And we can climb higher again. This result is amazing”, the Italian exultantly explained at the end of a test that served to show the world his prodigious physique and one of the most advanced bicycles in technology that exists nowadays.

It’s about the Bolide HR 3D by Pinarello -one of the most experienced Italian manufacturers- model that for the first time in history has been manufactured through a 3D printer. With this method, the bicycle adapts to the cyclist’s measurements and not the other way around, which allows greater comfort and maximizes performance. The material of the frame and fork is also at the forefront of technology with the so-called Scalmalloy, an alloy of scandium, aluminum and magnesium high strength used in aerospace. The aerodynamic efficiency is total, concentrating 40% of it between the vertical frame tube and seat post, thanks to a design inspired by the study of humpback whales.

Filippo Ganna's bicycle for the hour record, in detail.

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Filippo Ganna’s bicycle for the hour record, in detail.AS Journal

Yes, you have read correctly. These animals move underwater with great precision despite the currents, thanks to the protuberances of their fins, so the small ridges that the bicycle presents in that rear area they redirect the air flow in the same direction and reduce aerodynamic resistance. A similar concept to the one introduced by the British team, when it was called Sky, with the ‘Vortex’, material that he stamped in the form of balls on his time trial jerseys in the 2017 Tour de France and that improved air penetration, that is, it translated into an aerodynamic benefit. “This is a well-deserved honor for Filippo. And beating Boardman’s benchmark time is also something very special for us, it was something we all secretly hoped to achieve and it reaffirms what a great athlete Ganna is. This is a prestigious event that not only puts the rider to the test, but also the technology and the innovation of the team and our partners, including Pinarello, Bioracer and Kask. This is a huge achievement for everyone involved and we are incredibly proud.” Rod Ellingworth, deputy director of Ineos, after achieving success.

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And, the million dollar question: How much is this wonder worth? Between the 3D frame and fork, the two lenticular wheels, the integrated handlebar and the development chosen (66 chainring and 14-tooth sprocket), the total value of the bicycle amounts to 75,000 euros. A unique relic, from a museum, which is already part of the history of cycling.

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