The choice to ban the usage of aero bars and extensions among the many elite males’s and girls’s racers at Unbound Gravel 2023 has led riders to search for different methods so as to add consolation when adopting a extra aero driving place.
Over the 200-mile course of the elite occasion, aerodynamics play an necessary position and, in earlier years, aero bars or extensions have been de rigueur among the many prime racers, with final 12 months’s winner Ivar Slik equipping his Wilier Rave SLR with extensions customized 3D printed to suit the bike.
Dylan Johnson has headed to the wind tunnel to quantify the benefits that aero bars can present and got here away with a 41-watt saving from getting lengthy and low on the bike. That’s a giant acquire that received’t be obtainable to elite riders on this 12 months’s race.
However pack racing has largely changed solo efforts on the pointy finish of gravel races, so Slik, for instance, says that he spent round 15 per cent of his time on his bar extensions ultimately 12 months’s race.
The ban implies that riders are searching for other ways to cut back their frontal profile and so enhance their aerodynamics when driving the Flint Hills.
That’s led to a number of bikes that we’ve noticed within the run-up to tomorrow’s race being tailored in order that riders can undertake the “pet paws” place extra comfortably, with their forearms resting on the bar tops.
Though the UCI banned the experience place final 12 months, gravel racing continues to be outdoors the UCI’s attain, in order that riders will not be topic to the UCI’s ban.
Listed here are three diversifications to the tops that caught our consideration.
Innokenty Zavyalov’s Lauf Seigla
Innokenty Zavyalov has tailored his Imaginative and prescient Metron 4D bars with further tape and padding in direction of the stem. Curiously, as is now widespread with aero profile bars, the outer part of the tops is untaped, regardless of the additional vibration that will probably be transmitted from the gravel when driving along with his fingers on the bar tops.
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Dylan Johnson’s Issue Ostro Gravel
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Dylan Johnson has gone additional, with the Black Inc one-piece bar/stem on his Issue Ostro Gravel absolutely taped regardless of the seemingly lack of effectivity for his aero profile tops. The central part has been closely over-taped although, to offer some further padding when resting his forearms on the tops.
Kerry Werner’s Kona Libre
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Kerry Werner has purpose-designed safety on the Coefficient RR Carbon bars on his Kona Libre. You possibly can’t see within the pictures, however the Coefficient bars not solely have a 12-degree backsweep and 7-degree flare to the drops, additionally they slope downwards by 15 levels by the tops. There are two positions on the underside of the tops through which wired Shimano satellite tv for pc shifters might be sited.
The bars’ slope provides an aggressive aero place within the drops, however Werner has additionally fitted Coefficient’s rubber prime grips to his tops. Though these are primarily designed to offer grip when holding the tops in moist climate, they need to present some further consolation when resting his forearms on the tops.
Variations for driving pet paws are among the many extra modern hacks we’ve seen on bikes at Unbound Gravel in recent times.
We’ve received a rundown of different tech to count on to see to assist riders squeeze a couple of further watts out of their bikes and possibly the profitable edge.