The world’s fastest man will start the Giro d’Italia on something special.
Filippo Ganna will be rolling out of the Giro d’Italia time trial start house on a striking blue Pinarello Bolide TT, fit with a 3D aerobar built to fit him with his forearms tilted up.
Ganna’s Bolide TT frameset is a stock model, including all Pinarello’s swooping curves for aerodynamics and the brand’s distinctive style.
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The paint isn’t stock. Ganna said he picked the color with the help of Pinarello owner Fausto Pinarello.
“It’s the like color used by Elia Viviani after Rio,” Ganna said, referencing the Italian rider who won gold in the omnium at the 2016 Olympics.
As Italian national time trial champion, running the Azzurro on the bike is well within his rights. But so too would he be with a rainbow motif, owing to his current reign as the world time trial champion. And, in fairness, his fork’s paint does nod to this fact.
Saturday’s opening time trial is short: 8.6km. Judging by his gear selection, Ganna does not intend to linger: his 11-30t cassette is paired with a 58t big ring.
Ganna said of his special bike, “we hope it can help me be lucky at this Giro.” Other riders will need a lot more luck — and a whole lot of horsepower — if they hope to beat Ganna in the opening time trial of the 2021 Giro d’Italia.
The proportions of Top Ganna’s bike are remarkable, from the deep (and unbranded) front wheel to the extreme custom bar to the massive 58t Dura-Ace chain ring.
Most is Pinarello’s house brand. This bar was custom made for the world champ, with a computer mount and shift buttons neatly tucked between the extensions.
Nothing off the shelf about this configuration. The extensions were sculpted for Ganna’s preferences, and feature shifter buttons under the tips plus a custom Garmin mount that hovers in between his wrists.
With Shimano Dura-Ace Di2 (and SRAM eTap AXS, for that matter), any type of button or switch can be wired into the system. In past years we have seen some riders using Shimano sprint shifters on a SRAM system, for instance. Here, Ganna has oblong carbon buttons on the inside of each brake lever.
Handlebar tape? That’s just excess drag. A thin layer of grip tape is Ganna’s choice for traction.
Pinarello’s Bollide TT is a far cry from the straight steel tubes of the brand’s heritage.
Rim brakes? Check. Highly sculpted tubing and caliper fairing? Check. Name sticker on the wheel with 25mm Continental Grand Prix TT tires? Naturally.
Cue up the Top Gun soundtrack here.
It takes more than equipment to win a grand tour stage, but personalizing the fit for optimum aerodynamics and biomechanics is still a huge asset.