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By Lennard Zinn
Gilberto Simoni, whose nickname is Spider (or Spiderman), finally came away with some glory in the Tour today. The spider is known for its ability to climb vertical surfaces, and Simoni demonstrated that today.
But his special autographed Cinelli Ram bar shows off the Spider even more! The paint job on his Ran is unique, but so is the tilt of the drops relative to the stem, which were custom-made by Cinelli for Simoni. In fact, a number of Rams were built custom to riders on Saeco and ONCE for the Tour, all whipped out within a month. To meet the requirements of each racer, Cinelli manufactured eight non-standard RAM handlebars so that the different sizes and angles would suit the cyclists’ usual riding position.
A month and a half before the start of the Tour, ONCE and Saeco sent lists of their Tour riders and handlebar measurements for them. Cinelli then designed, manufactured and tested a series of handlebars with the different requested clamp angle. The last bars were delivered to the teams 15 days before the start and they were mounted on the actual ONCE and Saeco team Tour bikes.
Additionally, two RAM handlebars for Saeco, namely for Simoni and FabioSacchi were custom airbrushed in designs unique to them (Spider and Cheetah) which also matched their custom airbrushed Cannondale frames.
The other one-piece carbon stem/bar at the Tour is the Deda Alanera, already famous integrated carbon handlebar. Fassa Bortolo, Lotto Domo (McEwen), Alessio, Telekom, U.S. Postal all have some prototypes.
The Alanera replaces the Synapsi, whose aero’ extension was declared illegal by the UCI for mass-start races. The Alanera¹s claimed weight is 299-310 grams.
Dario Cioni’s 2003 Pinarello Dogma
While not exactly having the best Tour de France of his career (finishing 68th in today’s stage), Fasso Bortolo’s Dario Cioni can take some solace in the fact that he does have one of the most beautiful bikes in the peloton.
Although similar to the bikes that Telekom is riding in the Tour, Cioni’s bike sports Mavic Cosmic SSC SL wheels for the mountain stages and Mavic Ksyrium SSC SL TdF Edition wheels for the flat stages.
A 10-speed Campagnolo Record group and Deda Newton 31 bars and stem also grace his ride. Vitorria Corsa CX tubular grace his Cosmics and Ksyrium wheels. A Selle Italia saddle tops off his curvaceous bike.
The Dogma is a complex mix of glued and welded tubing including a magnesium front triangle, carbon rear triangle and shapely “Onda” carbon fork. Fausto Pinnarello claims the Dogma offers the ultimate balance between ride quality, minimal weight and outstanding stiffness.
While hard to come by in the United States, it is possible through a limited number of dealers. You will pay in the neighborhood of $7000 for a complete pro-build bike. Cioni’s bike varies from stock geometry with a slightly longer toptube and slightly shorter chainstays, a custom design not available to consumers.