Two-time and defending Giro d'Italia champion Vincenzo Nibali (Bahrain-Merida) will roll out for stage 1 of the race's 100th anniversary on Friday in Alghero on a custom Merida Scultura wrapped in gold leaf to mimic the iconic spiral Giro trophy.
Winner of the race last year and in 2013, Nibali will this year attempt to become one of only eight riders to have won the race three times, and he can check out the names of all the past winners on the gold leaf banderole that spirals across the bike's top tube and head tube. The golden banderole is made of real gold leaf applied to the top layer of the carbon before a protective clear coat is applied. Merida says the bike is a unique, one-off creation that will not be available to purchase on the consumer market.
"The Scultura is one of three bikes that will be available to the Bahrain-Merida Pro Cycling Team during the event," Merida said in a release issued about the bike. "Besides the super lightweight Scultura, the riders have also access to the wind slicing Reacto aero bike and the super adjustable Warp TT time trial machine for any time trial duties."
Shimano supplies the chainrings, brakes and shifting, with Nibali running the Dura-Ace Di2 groupset with electronic shifting. The rear brake is not in the traditional position but tucked away behind the bottom bracket. Other components come from FSA, SRM, Fulcrum and Continental.
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Frame: Merida Scultura, M/L (56)
Fork: Merida Road Carbon Race
Stem: FSA OS, 120
Handlebar: FSA Compact 42
Front brake: Shimano Dura-Ace
Rear brake: Shimano Dura-Ace
Front derailleur: Shimano Dura-Ace Di2
Rear derailleur: Shimano Dura-Ace Di2
Cassette: Shimano Dura-Ace 11-28T
Chain: Shimano Dura-Ace 11-speed
Crankset: SRM, 172.5mm, 53/39T
Pedals: Shimano Dura Ace
Wheelset: Fulcrum Speed 40 tubular
Tyres: Continental Competition tubular, 25mm
Saddle: Prologo Nago C3
Seatpost: FSA Non-series Adjustable
Bottle cages: Elite Custom Race Plus
Rider’s height: 181cm
Rider’s weight: 65kg
Saddle height from Bottom bracket: 756mm
Total weight: 6.8kg