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Strade Bianche: Huge tech gallery

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World champion Anna van der Breggen has this stunning colour scheme on her Specialized S-Works Tarmac

World champion Anna van der Breggen has this stunning colour scheme on her Specialized S-Works Tarmac
(Image credit: Stephen Farrand)
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Julian Alaphilippe’s Supacaz bar tape had cloth-finish for extra grip

Julian Alaphilippe’s Supacaz bar tape had cloth-finish for extra grip
(Image credit: Stephen Farrand)
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Don’t was the dust of Julian Alaphilippe’s S-Works Specialized Tarmac

Don’t was the dust of Julian Alaphilippe’s S-Works Specialized Tarmac
(Image credit: Stephen Farrand)
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Greg van Avermaet wore these oversized Oakley Sutro sunglasses from the brand’s urban cycling range

Greg van Avermaet wore these oversized Oakley Sutro sunglasses from the brand’s urban cycling range
(Image credit: Stephen Farrand)
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The Shimano neutral service was loaded with these Pinarello Dogma bikes

The Shimano neutral service was loaded with these Pinarello Dogma bikes
(Image credit: Stephen Farrand)
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Geraint Thomas wore a skinsuit for Strade Bianche but stuck to his trusted white Oakley Jawbones glasses

Geraint Thomas wore a skinsuit for Strade Bianche but stuck to his trusted white Oakley Jawbones glasses
(Image credit: Stephen Farrand)
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Lotto Soudal rode on Campagnolo-equipped Ridley Helium SLX bikes

Lotto Soudal rode on Campagnolo-equipped Ridley Helium SLX bikes
(Image credit: Stephen Farrand)
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The EF Education First race info seemed to include a stop for a burger

The EF Education First race info seemed to include a stop for a burger
(Image credit: Stephen Farrand)
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Lachlan Morton raced in what appears to be an updated and perhaps final version of Rapha’s new still to be revealed road shoes

Lachlan Morton raced in what appears to be an updated and perhaps final version of Rapha’s new still to be revealed road shoes
(Image credit: Stephen Farrand)
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Fernando Gaviria used a Colnago C64 fitted with 28mm Vittoria Corsa Control tyres

Fernando Gaviria used a Colnago C64 fitted with 28mm Vittoria Corsa Control tyres
(Image credit: Stephen Farrand)
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Carbon-fibre SRM cranks but no disc brakes for Vincenzo Nibali on his Merida Scultura

Carbon-fibre SRM cranks but no disc brakes for Vincenzo Nibali on his Merida Scultura
(Image credit: Stephen Farrand)
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Trek-Segafredo used SRAM disc brakes with DT Swiss thru-axles

Trek-Segafredo used SRAM disc brakes with DT Swiss thru-axles
(Image credit: Stephen Farrand)
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It looked like Astana were using these 26mm Dugast tubulars

It looked like Astana were using these 26mm Dugast tubulars
(Image credit: Stephen Farrand)
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Post-race the riders understood why they needed a 28 cog for the climb to Siena

Post-race the riders understood why they needed a 28 cog for the climb to Siena
(Image credit: Stephen Farrand)
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The fine dirt road dust covered every tooth of the cogs

The fine dirt road dust covered every tooth of the cogs
(Image credit: Stephen Farrand)
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Look at the dust-covered small chainring on Jakob Fuglsang’s bike

Look at the dust-covered small chainring on Jakob Fuglsang’s bike
(Image credit: Stephen Farrand)
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Wout van Aert was number 141

Wout van Aert was number 141
(Image credit: Stephen Farrand)
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The head tube of Wout van Aert’s Bianchi Oltre XR4

The head tube of Wout van Aert’s Bianchi Oltre XR4
(Image credit: Stephen Farrand)
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Jakob Fuglsang performed well in the unlabelled 26 mm tyres and Corima wheels

Jakob Fuglsang performed well in the unlabelled 26 mm tyres and Corima wheels
(Image credit: Stephen Farrand)
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Jakob Fuglsang used an integrated Vision Metron 5 cockpit

Jakob Fuglsang used an integrated Vision Metron 5 cockpit
(Image credit: Stephen Farrand)
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Julian Alaphilippe has a short stem so his race notes are divided into his top tube

Julian Alaphilippe has a short stem so his race notes are divided into his top tube
(Image credit: Stephen Farrand)
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A close-up shot of Julian Alaphilippe’s stem, double bar tape and K-edge mount

A close-up shot of Julian Alaphilippe’s stem, double bar tape and K-edge mount
(Image credit: Stephen Farrand)
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The rear end of Julian Alaphilippe’s S-Works Specialized Tarmac

The rear end of Julian Alaphilippe’s S-Works Specialized Tarmac
(Image credit: Stephen Farrand)
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Julian Alaphilippe’s S-Works Specialized Tarmac was spotted-less before the race but like this after his victory

Julian Alaphilippe’s S-Works Specialized Tarmac was spotted-less before the race but like this after his victory
(Image credit: Stephen Farrand)
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Julian Alaphilippe’ S-Works Specialized Tarmac was covered in white dust

Julian Alaphilippe’ S-Works Specialized Tarmac was covered in white dust
(Image credit: Stephen Farrand)
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 The Eddy Merckx bikes await the AG2r-La Mondiale riders

The Eddy Merckx bikes await the AG2r-La Mondiale riders
(Image credit: Stephen Farrand)
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The Neri Sottoli-Selle Italia riders had new KTM Revelator Alto Elite bikes fitted with SRAM Red

The Neri Sottoli-Selle Italia riders had new KTM Revelator Alto Elite bikes fitted with SRAM Red
(Image credit: Stephen Farrand)
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The Valcar Cyclance Cycling used TRP mechanical disc brakes

The Valcar Cyclance Cycling used TRP mechanical disc brakes
(Image credit: Stephen Farrand)
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The Italian Top Girls Fassa Bortolo team use these Pinarello FX Prince bikes fitted with Shimano Ultegra

The Italian Top Girls Fassa Bortolo team use these Pinarello FX Prince bikes fitted with Shimano Ultegra
(Image credit: Stephen Farrand)
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CCC-Liv used Vittoria Corsa tyres

CCC-Liv used Vittoria Corsa tyres
(Image credit: Stephen Farrand)
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Several CCC-Liv bikes had this massive stem

Several CCC-Liv bikes had this massive stem
(Image credit: Stephen Farrand)
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Canyon-SRAM used these Schwalbe 1 Pro One tubeless tyres

Canyon-SRAM used these Schwalbe 1 Pro One tubeless tyres
(Image credit: Stephen Farrand)
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The wide Canyon stem is perfect for race information

The wide Canyon stem is perfect for race information
(Image credit: Stephen Farrand)
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The spare Zipp wheels are ready for the Canyon-SRAM team car

The spare Zipp wheels are ready for the Canyon-SRAM team car
(Image credit: Stephen Farrand)
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 The Canyon-SRAM team even had the new RED eTap AXS 12-speed groupset on their spare bikes

The Canyon-SRAM team even had the new RED eTap AXS 12-speed groupset on their spare bikes
(Image credit: Stephen Farrand)
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The Aromitalia Vaiano women’s team have this interesting stack and computer mount combo

The Aromitalia Vaiano women’s team have this interesting stack and computer mount combo
(Image credit: Stephen Farrand)
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Team Sunweb used 28mm Rbx Continental Competition ProLtd tyres

Team Sunweb used 28mm Rbx Continental Competition ProLtd tyres
(Image credit: Stephen Farrand)
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The Deceuninck-QuickStep brought their spotlessly clean mechanical truck to he start

The Deceuninck-QuickStep brought their spotlessly clean mechanical truck to he start
(Image credit: Stephen Farrand)
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 Deceuninck-QuickStep’s race notes are simple but precise

Deceuninck-QuickStep’s race notes are simple but precise
(Image credit: Stephen Farrand)
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 The Deceuninck-QuickStep bikes were fitted with Specialized’s 26mm S-Works Turbo Gripton

The Deceuninck-QuickStep bikes were fitted with Specialized’s 26mm S-Works Turbo Gripton
(Image credit: Stephen Farrand)
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A Vital Concept-B&B Hotels rider used a 54 tooth FSA aero chainset

A Vital Concept-B&B Hotels rider used a 54 tooth FSA aero chainset
(Image credit: Stephen Farrand)
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Women’s European champion Marta Bastianelli has some special shoes

Women’s European champion Marta Bastianelli has some special shoes
(Image credit: Stephen Farrand)
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The race motorbikes had the biggest suspension fork in the peloton

The race motorbikes had the biggest suspension fork in the peloton
(Image credit: Stephen Farrand)
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Count the 12 SRAM cogs on Anna van der Breggen’s bike

Count the 12 SRAM cogs on Anna van der Breggen’s bike
(Image credit: Stephen Farrand)
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Shara Gillow’s Lapierre warms in the morning sun before the start

Shara Gillow’s Lapierre warms in the morning sun before the start
(Image credit: Stephen Farrand)
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Trek-Segafredo have already damaged their new RED eTap AXS 12-speed gears

Trek-Segafredo have already damaged their new RED eTap AXS 12-speed gears
(Image credit: Stephen Farrand)
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All the bikes in the men’s race were fitted this new Velon data device

All the bikes in the men’s race were fitted this new Velon data device
(Image credit: Stephen Farrand)
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Julian Alaphilippe raced on his custom-coloured Specialized S-Works Tarmac with deep-section Roval wheels

Julian Alaphilippe raced on his custom-coloured Specialized S-Works Tarmac with deep-section Roval wheels
(Image credit: Stephen Farrand)
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The Deceuninck-QuickStep mechanical carefully checked the tyre pressure before the start with this digital device

The Deceuninck-QuickStep mechanical carefully checked the tyre pressure before the start with this digital device
(Image credit: Stephen Farrand)
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Team Sunweb – men and women – raced on disk brakes with Cervelo quick-release levers

Team Sunweb – men and women – raced on disk brakes with Cervelo quick-release levers
(Image credit: Stephen Farrand)

This year's Strade Bianche races were dry, dusty and fast compared to last year’s cold, wet and muddy battles for survival. Equipment choices based on the need for comfort but also lightweight for the many climbs and for racing speed.

Pure aero bikes were deemed too rigid and perhaps lacked the handling finesse needed for the twisting and turning Tuscan farm tracks. Instead, riders opted for more traditional-looking road bikes fitted with 26mm or 28mm tyres and varying rim depths based on personal choices between better performance, comfort and a low risk of punctures. Most men still preferred tubular tyres, but Cyclingnews spotted the women’s Canyon-SRAM team using Schwalbe 1 Pro tubeless tyres on their race bikes.

Men’s winner Julian Alaphilippe (Deceuninck-QuickStep) used his custom-coloured Specialized disc-brake Tarmac that Cyclingnews spotted and photographed at the Vuelta a San Juan in February. He raced on Specialized’s 26mm S-Works Turbo Gripton tyres, which have a varying dotted tread pattern.

Annemiek can Vleuten (Mitchelton-Scott) used a semi-aero Scott Foil fitted with caliper brakes to time trial away from her rivals and win the women’s race. Rival and current world champion Anna van der Breggen (Boels Dolmans) had a multi-coloured Specialized S-Works Tarmac, fitted with SRAM's new RED eTap AXS 12-speed groupset. The rainbow colours were drip painted, making for a very standout colour scheme.

Tyre choice and pressure were a vital piece of each team’s tech strategy, to ensure sufficient grip, to help soften the ride on the dirt roads while keep rolling resistance low.

Greg Van Avermaet wore these oversized Oakley Sutro sunglasses (Stephen Farrand)

Cyclingnews saw a Deceuninck-QuickStep mechanic carefully checking pressure before the men’s race. He revealed that riders had 7 bar in both front and rear tyres, with Alaphilippe getting a little lower at 6.9 bar because he weighs less than Zdenek Stybar and the other cobbled Classics riders. The Frenchman confirmed he did not suffer any punctures during the race.

Team Sunweb opted for a slightly wider 28mm Continental Competition ProLtd tubulars, CCC-Liv used Vittoria Corsa 25mm tyres, while UAE Team Emirates opted for the 28mm Vittoria Corsa, which has an herringbone edge to offer more grip. Astana use Corima wheels, which appeared to be fitted with unmarked 26mm Dugast tyres for Strade Bianche.

The warm weather allowed for short sleeves and even skin suits instead of the thermal clothing of 2018. Greg van Avermaet was wearing some new urban style Oakley Sutro glasses for the bright Tuscan sun. They seem to emulate the over-sized Scott Sport Shields preferred by Adam and Simon Yates.

Lachlan Morton's got a new pair of shoes (Stephen Farrand)

Lachlan Morton (EF Education First) raced in what appears to be an updated and perhaps final version of Rapha’s new still-to-be-revealed road shoes. Morton raced in white shoes with long laces at the Tour Down Under, but these pink shoes appear to have the wide heel Rapha have hinted at, the comfort and lightweight of a drawn-together lace system and a strap to tighten the shoe around the shoe-plate area.

All the bikes were spotlessly clean and well-oiled before the start in Siena, but a few hours later the dust of the 'strade bianche' had covered every millimetre of the bikes, sparking the need for careful cleaning post-race.

The dust combined with any drop of oil to create a kind of limestone paste that clung to the chain, gears, cogs and chainrings just as it stuck to the riders sweaty faces. The only dust-free point was where riders’ legs and arms rubbed against the bikes.

Click or swipe through the gallery above for a closer look at the bikes and gear for the 2019 Strade Bianche races.