Cycling Australia officially unveiled their new track bike on Tuesday, which will be used for this week's UCI Track World Championships in Berlin, Germany, and at the Tokyo Olympic Games later this year. The design of the new 2020 Argon 18 Electron Pro naturally combines increased stiffness with reduced drag, but includes a new pursuit fork that the Canadian bicycle manufacturer claims reduces drag by 30 per cent compared to the previous iteration's fork.
"We are really proud of this bike, and it's through real teamwork and collaboration that Argon 18 and Zipp [wheels] have developed this bike for us," said Cycling Australia Performance Director Simon Jones in a press release.
"To have the bike on time is excellent, as it gives all the riders time to get used to the feeling, which they all have done very quickly. I want to thank everyone at Argon 18, Zipp and Cycling Australia who worked together – across many time zones – to deliver our new bike."
VP of Product at Argon 18, Martin Faubert, added: "This project brought together a team committed to innovation, optimisation and performance. By combining resources to develop the best possible equipment, we now have a bike that pushes the boundaries in every way, giving riders every possible advantage in the quest for gold."
The development of the complete bike, which uses a custom-designed Zipp Super-9 Tubular Track Disc AUS wheelset, has been a collaboration between Argon 18, Zipp, Cycling Australia, the University of Adelaide and Monash University.
The focus has been on increasing stiffness and reducing drag, but with special attention paid to the front profile of the bike. There are two fork versions to be paired with the frame: a sprint fork and a pursuit fork, with the latter using a 40mm axle as opposed to a standard 100mm axle, apparently reducing drag by 30 per cent compared to the forks used by Argon 18's previous version of the Electron Pro.
Standard track-wheel bolts have been replaced by thru-axles to increase stiffness and again further reduce drag, and a timing chip is also integrated into both the pursuit fork and sprint fork to save even more watts.
Meanwhile, new, integrated sprint/bunch-race handlebars and new 'tri bar' extensions, customised for each rider for pursuit events, have also been developed, and that stiffer cockpit combines with a stiffer, stronger bottom bracket to cater for some of the world's most powerful riders, who will use the bike for the first time in competition at this week's UCI Track World Championships, which run from February 26-March 1 in Berlin, Germany.
The bike is available to the public via Argon 18 for US$18,000 (£13,800), which includes the Zipp wheelset and the sprint and pursuit forks.
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