This article first appeared on Bike Radar
Peter Sagan (Tinkoff) started the 2016 Paris-Roubaix with his dedicated cobbles bike atop the first team follow car. As the 258km race left Compiegne, Sagan pedaled away on a Specialized S-Works Tarmac with deep aero wheels and 26mm tubulars.
“The energy savings in the early part of the race is critical,” Specialized team liaison Gianpaolo Mondini said before the race. “He will switch after about 100km."
On the follow car, Sagan had his Specialized S-Works Roubaix with fat 30mm FMB/Specialized tubulars.
Most other riders opted to split the difference, and start and (hopefully) finish on 28mm tubulars.
The other notable difference was the drivetrain. The Tarmac had Shimano Dura-Ace Di2 with sprint shifters; the pavé set-up had mechanical Shimano Dura-Ace.
Sagan’s top rival Fabian Cancellara has long favoured mechanical Dura-Ace over Di2, and again started the race on the cable-actuated group.
These two riders are increasingly in the minority, however, with a dozen teams at Paris-Roubaix using Di2 for some if not all of their riders.