Unfussy race machine for rising Dutch star
Wilco Kelderman has been touted as the next star of Dutch cycling. The label usually comes attached to a big bag of public expectation, but the 23-year-old Belkin rider appears to be carrying it lightly this season. He took seventh at the Giro d'Italia in May – only his second grand tour – and is currently third at the Critérium du Dauphiné where he was almost able to match the pace of Chris Froome (Team Sky) and Alberto Contador (Tinkoff Saxo-Bank) up the slopes of the Col de Béal yesterday.
Kelderman is riding the very stiff Bianchi Oltre XR2, an all-round race bike in a standard team setup. That means Shimano Dura-Ace Di2 throughout, FSA components and, for him, a San Marco saddle tipped slightly forward.
The frame – ridden by most of the team’s stage race group – is a size 57cm. The frame is designed to be as stiff as possible, but there are some nods to comfort: the Oltre XR2 is built with slim seatstays to reduce road vibration and reduce weight without losing power transfer.
Kelderman is built in the Dutch mould – tall and very slender – meaning most of the kit sizes are on the lengthy side too – especially concerning leg measurements. Saddle to the centre of the bottom bracket is 788mm for example.
The bike, though an all-rounder, makes a significant nod to aerodynamics. Cables are internally routed and the front end's sculpted tapered head tube keeps frontal area to a minimum.
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