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Prologo: From production to the peloton

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Most of the Tinkoff riders have chosen to use saddles with Prologo's latest 'airing' CPC textured surfacing

Most of the Tinkoff riders have chosen to use saddles with Prologo's latest 'airing' CPC textured surfacing (Image credit: Warren Rossiter/Immediate Media)
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Sagan gets his own custom finish Scratch saddle

Sagan gets his own custom finish Scratch saddle (Image credit: Warren Rossiter/Immediate Media)
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The saddle covers are precision laser cut before being readied for bonding

The saddle covers are precision laser cut before being readied for bonding (Image credit: Warren Rossiter/Immediate Media)
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Saddle covers are sprayed with a bonding agent before being set on the pad

Saddle covers are sprayed with a bonding agent before being set on the pad (Image credit: Warren Rossiter/Immediate Media)
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The saddle moulds looks like a messy business, but its actually very precise in practice

The saddle moulds looks like a messy business, but its actually very precise in practice (Image credit: Warren Rossiter/Immediate Media)
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As well as manual tools for checking rail alignment and symmetry on finished saddles

As well as manual tools for checking rail alignment and symmetry on finished saddles (Image credit: Warren Rossiter/Immediate Media)
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This precision measuring system checks saddles are produced to the required tolerances

This precision measuring system checks saddles are produced to the required tolerances (Image credit: Warren Rossiter/Immediate Media)
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Products made with plastics, foams, gels, and printing inks need to be checked for hazardous substances before they are cleared for production

Products made with plastics, foams, gels, and printing inks need to be checked for hazardous substances before they are cleared for production (Image credit: Warren Rossiter/Immediate Media)
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Charts mapping the test requirements adorn the walls of ProLogo/Velo's test lab

Charts mapping the test requirements adorn the walls of ProLogo/Velo's test lab (Image credit: Warren Rossiter/Immediate Media)
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The heavy steel roller constantly vibrates and pulses to simulate a rider

The heavy steel roller constantly vibrates and pulses to simulate a rider (Image credit: Warren Rossiter/Immediate Media)
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This fatigue tester emulates a lifetimes worth of use in a few hours

This fatigue tester emulates a lifetimes worth of use in a few hours (Image credit: Warren Rossiter/Immediate Media)
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ProLogo take testing seriously here we have one test rig which measures high impacts at serious low temperatures, whilst the second checks for discolouration from light and wear

ProLogo take testing seriously here we have one test rig which measures high impacts at serious low temperatures, whilst the second checks for discolouration from light and wear (Image credit: Warren Rossiter/Immediate Media)
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This computer controlled, cutter come press bends, shapes and checks in one continuos process

This computer controlled, cutter come press bends, shapes and checks in one continuos process (Image credit: Warren Rossiter/Immediate Media)
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Each shaped rail is checked for alignment before continuing through assembly

Each shaped rail is checked for alignment before continuing through assembly (Image credit: Warren Rossiter/Immediate Media)
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Each shaped rail is checked for alignment before continuing through assembly

Each shaped rail is checked for alignment before continuing through assembly (Image credit: Warren Rossiter/Immediate Media)
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Cut rail sections are laser aligned in the press before being shaped

Cut rail sections are laser aligned in the press before being shaped (Image credit: Warren Rossiter/Immediate Media)
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The cover application is all done by very skilled hands…

The cover application is all done by very skilled hands… (Image credit: Warren Rossiter/Immediate Media)
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With the help of laser guidance…

With the help of laser guidance… (Image credit: Warren Rossiter/Immediate Media)
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ProLogo lso provided Direct Energy with colour coordinated bar tape

ProLogo lso provided Direct Energy with colour coordinated bar tape (Image credit: Warren Rossiter/Immediate Media)
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Contador's custom saddle just before its first outing

Contador's custom saddle just before its first outing (Image credit: Warren Rossiter/Immediate Media)
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Direct Energie also got their own custom colour matched ProLogo saddles

Direct Energie also got their own custom colour matched ProLogo saddles (Image credit: Warren Rossiter/Immediate Media)
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Direct Energie also got their own custom colour matched ProLogo saddles

Direct Energie also got their own custom colour matched ProLogo saddles (Image credit: Warren Rossiter/Immediate Media)
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As are Bora Argon 18, with their own custom coloured saddles

As are Bora Argon 18, with their own custom coloured saddles (Image credit: Warren Rossiter/Immediate Media)
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Cofidis are one of the teams trying out the new Airing CPC surfaced saddles

Cofidis are one of the teams trying out the new Airing CPC surfaced saddles (Image credit: Warren Rossiter/Immediate Media)
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And Velo's screen printing shop is a large scale affair

And Velo's screen printing shop is a large scale affair (Image credit: Warren Rossiter/Immediate Media)
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Printed saddle covers are checked before for quality and colour matching before going into the production line

Printed saddle covers are checked before for quality and colour matching before going into the production line (Image credit: Warren Rossiter/Immediate Media)
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Some of Velo's designs (and 3rd parties) require stitching and Velo have a huge team of machinists for just that

Some of Velo's designs (and 3rd parties) require stitching and Velo have a huge team of machinists for just that (Image credit: Warren Rossiter/Immediate Media)
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Once the rails are fitted then QC checks are carried out to ensure the saddle is aligned perfectly

Once the rails are fitted then QC checks are carried out to ensure the saddle is aligned perfectly (Image credit: Warren Rossiter/Immediate Media)
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The rails are fitted into the base using a hydraulic press

The rails are fitted into the base using a hydraulic press (Image credit: Warren Rossiter/Immediate Media)
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The rails are fitted into the base using a hydraulic press

The rails are fitted into the base using a hydraulic press (Image credit: Warren Rossiter/Immediate Media)
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The the overspill on the cover is handcut

The the overspill on the cover is handcut (Image credit: Warren Rossiter/Immediate Media)
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The saddle covers are gently heated to make them easier to shape around the base

The saddle covers are gently heated to make them easier to shape around the base (Image credit: Warren Rossiter/Immediate Media)
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With the help of laser guidance…

With the help of laser guidance… (Image credit: Warren Rossiter/Immediate Media)
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Titanium rails on your fancy saddle start out as massive reels

Titanium rails on your fancy saddle start out as massive reels (Image credit: Warren Rossiter/Immediate Media)
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The rails are cut bent and shaped through a variety of presses

The rails are cut bent and shaped through a variety of presses (Image credit: Warren Rossiter/Immediate Media)
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Here's Levi Leipheimer's Tour of California leaders jersey...

Here's Levi Leipheimer's Tour of California leaders jersey... (Image credit: Warren Rossiter/Immediate Media)
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And Cancellara's race number..

And Cancellara's race number.. (Image credit: Warren Rossiter/Immediate Media)
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You'll see plenty of evidence of ProLogo riders successes arounf Velo, this is contadors pink jerseyfrom the Giro

You'll see plenty of evidence of ProLogo riders successes arounf Velo, this is contadors pink jerseyfrom the Giro (Image credit: Warren Rossiter/Immediate Media)
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Velo - the biggest saddle producers in the world

Velo - the biggest saddle producers in the world (Image credit: Warren Rossiter/Immediate Media)
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Evidence of ProLogo's professional team involvement can be seen throughout the Velo factory

Evidence of ProLogo's professional team involvement can be seen throughout the Velo factory (Image credit: Warren Rossiter/Immediate Media)
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The rainbow of colours that Velo can produce

The rainbow of colours that Velo can produce (Image credit: Warren Rossiter/Immediate Media)
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This machines sole purpose is to check wear rates and colour fastness on the myriad of bar tapes Velo produce

This machines sole purpose is to check wear rates and colour fastness on the myriad of bar tapes Velo produce (Image credit: Warren Rossiter/Immediate Media)
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Each saddle top is laser cut, etched and printed before assembly

Each saddle top is laser cut, etched and printed before assembly (Image credit: Warren Rossiter/Immediate Media)
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Inside Velo, ProLogo's exclusive manufacturing partner you'll see plenty of brands running through the production lines

Inside Velo, ProLogo's exclusive manufacturing partner you'll see plenty of brands running through the production lines (Image credit: Warren Rossiter/Immediate Media)
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This line-up of Tinkoff team bikes shows a massive variety of ProLogo saddles

This line-up of Tinkoff team bikes shows a massive variety of ProLogo saddles (Image credit: Warren Rossiter/Immediate Media)
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Contador prefers the cutaway PAS shaping from ProLogo

Contador prefers the cutaway PAS shaping from ProLogo (Image credit: Warren Rossiter/Immediate Media)
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The custom saddle ProLogo have produced for Contador showing the winning stripes of the Giro, Tour, and Vuelta

The custom saddle ProLogo have produced for Contador showing the winning stripes of the Giro, Tour, and Vuelta (Image credit: Warren Rossiter/Immediate Media)
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But that doesn't stop him getting star struck…

But that doesn't stop him getting star struck… (Image credit: Warren Rossiter/Immediate Media)
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Salvatore says its essential for ProLogo to get great pro-rider feedback on there saddles

Salvatore says its essential for ProLogo to get great pro-rider feedback on there saddles (Image credit: Warren Rossiter/Immediate Media)
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and round the corner Rui Costa's world champs jersey

and round the corner Rui Costa's world champs jersey (Image credit: Warren Rossiter/Immediate Media)
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ProLogo pioneered and patented the textured, grippy and airy CPC surfacing, this is the range topping Scratch 2 Nack model

ProLogo pioneered and patented the textured, grippy and airy CPC surfacing, this is the range topping Scratch 2 Nack model (Image credit: Warren Rossiter/Immediate Media)
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Saddle rails are laser etched with logos and measure scales

Saddle rails are laser etched with logos and measure scales (Image credit: Warren Rossiter/Immediate Media)
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We like the idea of these glow-in-the-dark grips

We like the idea of these glow-in-the-dark grips (Image credit: Warren Rossiter/Immediate Media)
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The variety of colours and styles of tape is massive!

The variety of colours and styles of tape is massive! (Image credit: Warren Rossiter/Immediate Media)
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Pink ProLogo tape being produced for the Giro

Pink ProLogo tape being produced for the Giro (Image credit: Warren Rossiter/Immediate Media)
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But each section is still cut by hand

But each section is still cut by hand (Image credit: Warren Rossiter/Immediate Media)
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Bar tape is produced in massive quantities at Velo

Bar tape is produced in massive quantities at Velo (Image credit: Warren Rossiter/Immediate Media)
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It can produce multi-density and multi material grips like this one

It can produce multi-density and multi material grips like this one (Image credit: Warren Rossiter/Immediate Media)
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Velo's latest addition is this massive multi-material injection moulding machine

Velo's latest addition is this massive multi-material injection moulding machine (Image credit: Warren Rossiter/Immediate Media)
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...and this Spartacus TT saddle produced for Fabian's Olympic TT bike

...and this Spartacus TT saddle produced for Fabian's Olympic TT bike (Image credit: Warren Rossiter/Immediate Media)
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Or this one for the Schleck's from 2010

Or this one for the Schleck's from 2010 (Image credit: Warren Rossiter/Immediate Media)
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Part of ProLogo's pro support includes making ultra limited editions for its riders in a short time frame, like this one produced for Wiggins..

Part of ProLogo's pro support includes making ultra limited editions for its riders in a short time frame, like this one produced for Wiggins.. (Image credit: Warren Rossiter/Immediate Media)
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ProLogo offer bold bright saddles and stealthy understated ones too

ProLogo offer bold bright saddles and stealthy understated ones too (Image credit: Warren Rossiter/Immediate Media)
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The latest C3 saddles have a new bonding technique that keeps the underside of the saddle clean and smooth

The latest C3 saddles have a new bonding technique that keeps the underside of the saddle clean and smooth (Image credit: Warren Rossiter/Immediate Media)
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The latest CPC design features this honey comb patterning to the micro-volcano shaped pillars

The latest CPC design features this honey comb patterning to the micro-volcano shaped pillars (Image credit: Warren Rossiter/Immediate Media)
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CPC surfacing is avialable on pretty much every saddle shape in ProLogo's range

CPC surfacing is avialable on pretty much every saddle shape in ProLogo's range (Image credit: Warren Rossiter/Immediate Media)
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ProLogo's Salvatore Truglio lends Alberto Contador a hand to clean his bike

ProLogo's Salvatore Truglio lends Alberto Contador a hand to clean his bike (Image credit: Warren Rossiter/Immediate Media)

Earlier this year we got chance to visit Prologo's production. Prologo's driving force GM, Salvatore Truglio came along for the ride to take us through the brands short but highly successful history.

Salvatore explains, "We started Prologo back in 2007, with the aim to leading the market as technology brand & producing innovative saddles, differently from the established brands. I thought we should be about technology, whereas most saddles have been made the same way for decades. I also wanted us to be closely involved with professional racing, and right from our first product, the Prologo Choice we started to have winners.

"The Choice had the 1st & patented interchangeable covers so you could get different characteristics from the same saddle, firm, soft, smooth, textured, Carlos Sastre rode using the Choice when he won the Tour in 2008. That's just been the starting point for Prologo's success."

Salvatore believes that one of the reason of our success is the production relationship with Velo (their Producer partner), that with our strong & R&D dept. they have the advantage of using Velo's vast manufacturing expertise, which they call upon as back up for ProLogo's design team, wide ranging testing program, and research into production techniques. Velo produce around 15 million saddles per year, but the Prologo project is where they reserve their most important tech.

In recent years Prologo have introduced CPC connect technology, this special polymer material comprises of small volcano shaped hollow pieces that actively grip you as you ride, thanks to "Volcano shape" provide shock & vibration absorption and because they separate you from the saddles surface also increase airflow.

Prologo have a worldwide patent on this technology for saddles, Salvatore tells us "We saw this technology being used elsewhere (on grips for F1 gloves & seats) and thought we'd test it on saddles, it's proven very successful with a lot of our pro athletes opting for CPC".

The CPC Polymer was something Prologo first tried way back in 2009.

"We developed a dedicated time trial saddle with the help of Fabian Cancellara, the 1st & real TT saddles Nago EVO TTR, it was the first of its kind with a gripping texture and a thick padded nose. Obviously the TTR was a success as Spartacus took that years Tour time trial and the Worlds riding the TTR."

Salvatore continues, "We then moved the design on with pro rider input to the Zero TT, a lighter more compact saddle that this time pioneered the use of CPC. Orica-GreenEdge used the Zero TT to great success too.

"For this year we introduced a complete line of Products dedicate to TT & TRI; the T-Gale saddle, and I'm pleased to say that has been chosen by all of our protour teams for time trials and by pro Triathletes as Fredirik Vanlride, Sebastian Kinle."

We ask Salvatore if the professional sponsorship by Prologo is about exposure of the brand, "Yes of course that's a major part, but we have always had a good relationship with riders, the Nago Evo design was finalised with input from Bradley Wiggins, Alberto Contador & Schleck brothers," he replied.

"The Scratch is the saddle choice of Peter Sagan, who now helps develop the design, and this was the saddle chosen by Cancellara & Tom Boonen who both providing vital feedback. 'We also had Chris Froome riding the Zero2 along with Purito Rodriguez. We take feedback from riders we sponsor very seriously, they spend so long on a bike racing and training they are great judges of what makes a good saddle great, The Pro teams are important because are the final road test."

For this year they've produced special saddles for both Peter Sagan and Alberto Contador. Contador tested a wide range of ProLogo's saddles before choosing the all-new Zero C3 PAS CPC saddle. This 149g race perch features pretty much all of the latest Prologo innovations, including a new carbon bonded hull and rail, the PAS perennial relief channeling, and the latest airing CPC surface.

Salvatore goes on to tell us how difficult it is to choose the right saddle for most us, as the pro riders get to try out the whole range before deciding. That led them to develop their own saddle choice software, combined with a pressure sensitive seat hardware you can measure your sit bones and use the selector to chose the correct saddle. "We hope to have these in all of our premium worldwide dealers".

At this years Tour Prologo's fortunes have been a mixed bag, Peter Sagan has continued to get himself seen almost every day, and looks set to continue. Long time Prologo rider Contador hasn't faired so well with injury forcing his retirement early on. Though Salvatore sums things up "We see the Tour de France as the last part of our laboratory it's the final road test, we can see how well they work here and find where to improve too".