Tiesj Benoot is a 25-year-old classics specialist, born in the Flanders region of Belgium. After turning pro with Lotto-Soudal in 2015, he outlined his potential with 5th place at the Tour of Flanders and 2nd overall at the Belgium Tour. Now at Team Sunweb, Benoot's palmares already boasts success at the highest level, most notably, his victory at the 2018 Strade Bianche.
Benoot followed that up with 5th place at the 2019 edition and has come into the 2020 Spring Classics campaign on good form, opening his account at Omloop Het Niewsblad with 14th place.
With Northern Italy on lockdown and large gatherings being cancelled worldwide, RCS have so-far culled three of the Italian classics from the calendar, including Strade Bianche, Tirreno-Adriatico and Milan-San Remo.
This meant Benoot was unable to challenge for a second tilt at Strade Bianche. Instead, his altered program took him to Paris-Nice, where he finished third on stage 1.
For the 2020 season, Benoot's Sunweb team is sponsored by Cervelo, providing him with a choice of the S5 aero bike, or the R5 lightweight bike. For the first races of his campaign, Benoot has opted for the latter.
Despite contentious forms of modern technology working its way into the pro peloton, namely disc brakes and tubeless tyres, Benoot's current setup is traditional in a sense. He's running a lightweight bike with traditional frame shapes, rim brakes and tubular tyres - although he has fitted wider 28mm rubber in an attempt to smooth the cobbles.
Shifting comes courtesy of Shimano's Dura-Ace Di2 R9150 groupset and is complete with the brand's own R9100-P power meter. Shimano's subsidiary components company, Pro, also provides the finishing kit, with handlebars, stem, seatpost and saddle all coming from the Japanese brand.
Benoot has also shortened his chain by a few links in a bid to prevent chain slap and drop over the rough ground. It's been shortened to the point that spinning the cranks backwards in the big-and-big gear shown causes the chain to ship off the 30T sprocket - something the mechanic was keen to point out.
Click through the gallery above for a closer look at Tiesj Benoot's Cervelo R5.
Tiesj Benoot's Cervelo R5 full bike specifications
- Frameset: Cervelo R5
- Front brake: Shimano Dura-Ace R9100 rim brake
- Rear brake: Shimano Dura-Ace R9100 rim brake
- Brake/shift levers: Shimano Dura-Ace Di2 R9150
- Front derailleur: Shimano Dura-Ace Di2 R9150
- Rear derailleur: Shimano Dura-Ace Di2 R9150
- Cassette: Shimano Dura-Ace Di2 R9100, 11-30T
- Chain: Shimano Dura-Ace
- Crankset: Shimano Dura-Ace R9100-P w/ Dual-sided power meter, 54/42T
- Bottom bracket: Shimano Dura-Ace
- Wheelset: Shimano C40 tubular
- Tyres: Continental Pro Ltd tubular, 28mm
- Pedals: Shimano Dura-Ace PD-R9100
- Bar Tape: Pro Sport Control Team
- Handlebars: Pro Vibe Superlight
- Stem: Pro Vibe, 120mm
- Seatpost: Cervelo
- Bottle cages: Elite Vico
- Cycling computer: Sigma Rox
- Computer mount: K-Edge
- Height: 1.90m
- Weight: 72kg
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