Tadej Pogačar soloed 50km to the win at the 2022 Strade Bianche — on a road bike, of course.
The dominant Slovenian was back in action two days later for a “proper” time trial, at the Tirreno-Adriatico as the defending champion.
And only European TT champ Remco Evenepoel and world champion Filippo Ganna beat the defending Tirreno-Adriatico champ in the opening stage.
Also read: Tadej Pogačar’s Colnago V3Rs road bike
Pogačar was aboard a rather unusual Colnago K.One time trial bike that had a single, 58-tooth chainring. While weight does not make a difference on a short and very flat course — just 3m of elevation over 14km — aerodynamics certainly do, and could account for the elimination of the front derailleur.
UAE Team Emirates is still one of the few teams still partnered with Campagnolo, and as such the bike is fitted with Super Record components and Bora wheels.
Here’s an up-close look at the custom 1×11 Colnago TT bike raced by Tadej Pogačar in his quest to defend his Tirreno-Adriatico title.
Pogačar raced the 2022 Tirreno-Adriatico opener on a Colnago K.One time trial bike with Campagnolo Super Record components, Bora Ultra wheels, and custom carbon cockpit.
Disc brakes only slow you down in a time trial and are used sparingly, to control speed into corners. Pogačar used a rim-brake bike, which looked to have a very slippery front end that hid the front brake calipers.
Another side view of the front of Pogačar’s Colnago TT bike.
Who is Richard Mille? The manufacturer of ultra-premium (think: 7-figure) wrist watches.
A custom-printed carbon cockpit for the TT ace.
What the wind “sees” when it hits the aerodynamic front end of Pogačar’s TT bike.
Pogačar in action on stage 1 of the 2022 Tirreno-Adriatico.
Small sections of grip tape are layered onto the end of the base bar to give Pogačar a firm grip when sitting up, and feathering the brakes while cornering. Note the top and side shift buttons on the lever.
The shape of the down tube on the Colnago K.One time trial bike accommodates the Elite Chrono bottle and cage. For such a short time trial the bottle is presumably used for permissible aero benefit, not hydration.
The tolerance between the rear Pirelli tire and the inside of the seat tube is very precise.
While road bikes are just recently permitted the small, aero triangle between the seat and top tube, this has been allowed on time trial bikes for nearly a decade. The shape of the tops of the seat stays is meant to direct air flow smoothly around the rear wheel.
Pogačar’s Prologo saddle is stock.
And that bit of red and white color on the seatpost indicates his saddle height.
A deep Campy Bora Ultra front wheel is wrapped in a brand new Pirelli P.Zero tire.
Check out the chain guard on his 58t-ring front set-up.
This one goes to 11. While Campagnolo Super Record EPS now comes in 12-speed, Pogačar’s TT bike has 11-speed.
Super Record front derailleur? Nope – that’s a chain guide, which looks to be custom-made for Pogačar’s machine.