He’s currently winning the Tour de France, but we caught up with Chris Froome ahead of the race to chat about his bike, his gear and the future of a sport that’s had its reputation as one of the most gruelling physical challenges on Earth sullied by doping scandals.
FROOME AT THE TOP
Stuff Nice bike…
CF Yes, it’s the Pinarelleo Dogma 65.1 Think 2. It’s been the bike we’ve used this past year for the Tour de France. It’s an Italian brand, a very stiff bike. The carbon doesn’t flex when you put pressure on it. All the power you push on the pedals goes to the wheels.
Stuff What’s that noise?
CF The bike is equipped with a Shimano di2 electronic group set – it makes cool electronic sounds when you change gears. With the cable system, they tended to stretch or fray. Now it seems to be on the gear every single time.
Stuff What other tech kit do you use?
CF My measurements are done through my SRM unit. It measures the power that we’re pushing through when you ride. It used to be heart rate and now power, but its really a combination. All of it’s done wirelessly.
Stuff What do you do with the data once you’ve captured it?
CF The data can then be uploaded onto my MacBook Pro – each rider has one. On the bus, we have a network and connect to Training Peaks, an online diary of all our training metrics. These are analysed by Tim Kerrison, my personal coach.
Stuff What do you see as the future of technology in cycling?
CF The next step will be to keep refining things, trimming down, making bikes lighter and more aerodynamic. Keeping the rigidity, not compromising on the rigidity by going lighter.
Stuff Since Lance Armstrong’s drug revelations, is cycling going clean?
CF The doping era is definitely something of the past. There is such stringent testing now. Every day we have to put our whereabouts and people can rock up and test us. Not many other sports have that.
This interview originally appeared in Stuff South Africa. Chris Froome was interviewed by Toby Shapshak and Hillel Edelman