Tour de France 2020

Tech Podcast: Tour de France pits, in person and on TV

We usually spot Tour de France tech on the ground, at the team hotels and the team buses before a stage. This year is a little different.

If 2020 had been a typical year, editorial director Ben Delaney and I would likely have been on an airplane to France to cover the Tour de France in the days leading up to the first stage, sniffing around team buses in random hotel parking lots and in the team paddocks before the stages start. 2020 is of course nothing even remotely resembling typical, so like all of you, Ben and I will be watching the Tour on television (or computer screens) this year.

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In this week’s Tech Podcast, Ben and I talk a bit about our processes for spotting new tech in a typical year when we’re on the ground, wandering the team buses and making nuisances of ourselves at team hotels. How do we find the new stuff? It helps to have a plan — and a knack for spotting electrical tape.

After the break, Ben and I chat about what we expect to see launch this year at the Tour de France. Given that the race is both the biggest spotlight for bicycle brands throughout the year, and a totally unique race this year given its late-year timing, we may see fewer notable bike launches at the race. But both Ben and I expect some new tech worth spotting, from new bikes to helmets, from tires to wheels.

Like you, we’ll have our seats pulled up far too close to our computer or TV screens to spot all this new good stuff. We talk a bit about how to spot some of the new Tour de France tech you might be able to actually see on the computer screen. Bikes will be easiest to spot, but you’ll also be able to pick out new helmets (will Specialized update its Prevail II this year?), sunglasses, and even shoes when the camera zooms in tightly.

If you have questions about this episode of the Tech Podcast, or ideas for topics you’d like us to cover on a future episode, you can reach out to tech editor Dan Cavallari via email, Instagram, or Twitter.