Despite losing 1:21 in the crosswinds of Stage 7, Tadej Pogačar has looked the strongest GC contender in this year's Tour de France so far. On stage 8 he put in a decisive acceleration - and subsequently a record-breaking ascent of the Col de Peyresourde - to take back 40 seconds on his closest rivals. He then went on to win stage 9 ahead of Roglič - breaking Marc Hirschi's heart in the process - to further close the gap.
As we head back east towards the Alps, Pogačar sits just 7th at 44 seconds behind leader Primož Roglič, and save for any more crosswind mishaps in the lead-up, should light up stages 16 to 19 - four consecutive mountain stages punctuated by the second rest day - as he looks to further close the gap to his friend, rival, and fellow countryman.
Riding for UAE Team Emirates, Pogačar has a wide choice of technology at his disposal. Sponsored by Colnago, he has the Concept aero bike, the lightweight C64, or the combined lightweight-aero V3Rs in his stable. On each of which, he will run Campagnolo Super Record EPS, but can choose from rim or disc brake groupsets, and for his Campagnolo wheels, he has a choice of tubular or tubeless tyres.
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The 21-year-old Slovenian has been riding Colnago's V3Rs, taking full advantage of the bike industry's latest aero-combined-with-lightweight trend.
He's specced it with disc brakes, and for the most part, tubeless technology courtesy of Vittoria Corsa Speed Graphene 2.0 TLR tyres, although for the mountain days he's been switching back to tubular tyres.
Unfortunately, due to COVID restrictions, we were unable to measure or weigh Pogačar's bike, but it's a fair assumption that it safely meets the UCI legal limit of 6.8kg with tubulars fitted, and a few hundred grams more with the tubeless wheel-tyre combination. Aerodynamics are clearly an important factor for Pogačar, especially for the flatter days; seen here ahead of Stage 10, the bike is fitted with 60mm deep Campagnolo Bora WTO wheels. As mentioned, tyres come via Vittoria's tubeless Corsa Speed tyres, however, mechanics are yet to share their preferred choice of sealant.
The task of calculating Pogačar's power numbers falls squarely on the shoulders of Stages, who supply the team with both a power meter and their range of Dash cycling computers.
Pogačar's bike is fitted with a Prologo Scratch M5 saddle, which sits atop a proprietary Colnago seatpost. Pedals come courtesy of Look, who have provided their best road bike pedals, the KEO Blade Carbon with ceramic bearings. Bottle cages are the Vico Carbon from Elite, which weigh in at 20 grams.
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Click through the gallery above for a closer look at Tadej Pogačar's Colnago V3Rs.
Tadej Pogačar's Colnago V3Rs: Full bike specifications
- Frameset: Colnago V3Rs
- Front brake: Campagnolo Super Record disc
- Rear brake: Campagnolo Super Record disc
- Brake/shift levers: Campagnolo Ergopower Super Record EPS Disc Brake
- Front derailleur: Campagnolo Super Record EPS
- Rear derailleur: Campagnolo Super Record EPS
- Cassette: Campagnolo Super Record 12-speed 11-29
- Chain: Campagnolo Super Record 12-speed
- Crankset: Campagnolo Super Record 12x2, 53/39
- Power Meter: Stages Campagnolo Super Record 172.5mm
- Bottom bracket: Campagnolo Super Record
- Wheelset: Campagnolo Bora WTO 60 tubeless
- Tyres: Vittoria Corsa Speed Graphene 2.0 TLR
- Handlebars: Deda Alanera
- Bar tape: Colnago
- Stem: Deda Alanera
- Pedals: Look Keo Blade Carbon Ceramic
- Saddle: Prologo Scratch M5
- Seatpost: Colnago V3Rs
- Bottle cages: Elite Vico Carbon
- Computer: Stages Dash
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