Archive | June, 2011

The official Tour de France opening video with Colnago

30 Jun

The official Tour de France grand opening video for 2011. Great to see Colnago have been chosen by the officials & film makers to feature centre stage within this fantastic video. Enjoy! 
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Colnago C59 Italia Nero – 2012 Colour Scheme.

29 Jun

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Folks, feast your eyes on the brand spanking new Colnago C59 Italia in the new Nero colour scheme for 2012. This is most certainly going to melt a lot of hearts out there! I think Colnago are spot with this new colour scheme and just love the way the matt black works with the gloss black graphics.

Also, kitted out with the latest Campagnolo Bora Ulta Two ‘ Dark Label’ wheels for 2012, it really is quite a striking build!   

Ernesto Colnago – The Master

28 Jun
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Dromarti – La Grande Cycling Mitts

27 Jun

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I think sometimes we underestimate just how important mitts are when cycling. Especially when undertaking those long gruelling rides, its comfortable and reassuring to have a good set of riding mitts.  

Mitts need to be a very durable accessory because of the sheer amount of use on each ride. Not only must they offer comfort, performance and durability, they must also look good. Quite a big ask! Also, dealing with perspiration in this hot sunny weather, can rot a set of mitts in no time. If you are anything like me, I tend to get quite attached to a set of mitts and use them all the time, Perhaps not a great idea, as its good to interchange your mitts.

I recently road tested the Dromarti La Grande mitt. The test was carried out over quite a period of time, this gave me a good indication into the performance and durability. Dromarti are well know in the cycling world for their leather accessories, so it was great to have the opportunity to put them to the test.

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Before using any item or accessory, I always like to give it the once over. The Dromarti La Grande Mitt is hand made and use top grade leathers to manufacturer these mitts. In fact, just to digress slightly, the leather and stitching used to construct these gloves very much reminds me of the famous Italian leather good manufacturer called ‘The Bridge’ with their well deserved reputation for quality and detail. OK, back to the mitts, the first thing you will notice about them is indeed the detail in leather and finish. The leather used has a beautiful texture to it and is very subtle to the feel. First, lets have a look at the palm area. All materials used are leather. They appear to have used varying degrees of leather to offer the rider optimum comfort when on the hoods and drops. Also, on the ‘hot spot’ areas, they have used a very good thickness of leather, especially around the thumb and palm areas. Very comfortable indeed. The stitching is very nice done and is extremely strong. Even around the short cut out for the fingers, the stitching is intricate and neatly finished. Once used a couple of times, they just mould to the shape of your hand.

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Now, lets have a look at the top of the mitt. Dromarti have used a very sturdy but soft type of ribbed material. This allows the mitt to bend and flex with the riders activity and offers superb venting for the hand area. This ribbed material has a very nice feel about it. Each knuckle cut-out section is again neatly stitched  and beautifully finished. Just turn the mitt inside out, this gives you a great view of the workmanship involved. Inside, the glove is equally finished to a high standard with the soft nap of leather next to the skin. The mitt comes with a leather strap which neatly closes around the riders wrist using velcro to secure the glove in place. 

So, how do they feel on the bike? Only after a couple of rides, I could feel the gloves begin to mould and take the shape of my hand. On both long and short rides, the gloves were very comfortable. They have used a good balance of material on the palm area. Enough to offer comfort, but not too much which would create bulk. The ribbed material offers sensible venting for your hands , especially on those hot summer rides. The mitts have a real solid feel about them with the luxurious feel of the soft grain leather inside.  Its funny, unlike any-other material, leather takes on a great look once used and broken in. It just improves with age like a fine Bordeaux. Just one small point, I think it would of been a nice touch if they could of included a couple of finger loops on the mitts. This would greatly aid removal after riding.  

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Overall impression. If you are looking for a well crafted, hand made leather mitt which has been manufactured to a high standard, then these just could be for you. Purely and simply, they are a mitt that you will just want to wear!

The La Grande comes in a choice of two colours, Cognac or Black. For further information, please contact Dromarti  http://www.dromarti.com/index.php   

Rarity from the Colnago archive

23 Jun

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Whilst visiting Colnago this year in Cambiago, I was shown this astonishingly rare frame from the Colnago archive. It was originally made for a certain Mr Rasmussen back in 2004 when he was riding for Team Rabobank. This ‘Mountain Special’ prototype carbon fibre frame. It was the first sub 1000g frame. Colnago obtained a special limited production of high modulus carbon fibre from ATR, who were an exclusive composite material supplier in Italy. This brought the total weight of the bike to 6.84kg, which was extremely cutting edge at the time. Please see below the full specifications and a couple of photographs of the complete bike. The first generation Extreme C !

Specifications of the full build

Frame : Colnago C-50 HP Mountain Prototype
Size : 55cm (c-c) seat tube 57 cm (c-c) top tube
Cranks : Shimano Dura-Ace 175mm
Bars : Cinelli 44 x 130 RAM integrated
Wheels : Shimano Dura-Ace tubular prototype.
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Team Europcar and Colnago on track for the Tour de France – 2011

20 Jun

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Since Team Europcar were established at the beginning of this year, they are already proving themselves on the world stage of racing. The Pro Continental team faced the possibility of ending at the end of last year when Bouygues Telecom announced they weren’t renewing their sponsorship. A persevering Bernaudeau managed to salvage the team by convincing Europcar to come on board at the eleventh hour. The Paris based car rental company joined under one condition – that Bernaudeau maintained the services of Voeckler – and that decision that seems to have been a very valuable one. Compared to the previous team, Bbox Telecom Bouygues, they had sadly lost some key experienced riders due to the last minute sponsorship deal. However, this relatively young team are indeed hungry for success and victory. At the helm of this team, they have Thomas Voeckler who needs no introduction. A professional rider that would be eagerly signed up by any pro team. The French National Champion is experiencing his best year ever with Team Europcar and is very much looking forward to the Tour de France.

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 Anthony Charteau showed he is on great form when he won the mountainous stage two of the Route du Sud, while also taking the leaders jersey. The 2010 Tour de France King of the mountains jersey winner has been progressing steadily since breaking his collarbone in the Tour of South Africa earlier this year. He finished twelfth overall in the recent Tour of Luxembourg and third in the Boucles de l’Aulne. The victory in France is his second of the season after winning the overall classification in La Tropicale Amissa Bongo, an early season race in Gabon.

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Charteau escaped on the Col du Tourmalet with Giro d’Italia stage winner Vasili Kiryienka dropping their breakaway companions which included Davide Rebellin and Sandy Casar.

 

With only a short period of time to the biggest race of the year, this victory bodes well for Team Europcar. The French outfit have impressed their new sponsor this season with twenty victories to date. Most of them have come from the dazzling Thomas Voeckler who notched up a total of eight. Christophe Kern also showed his years of experience are coming to fruition when he won a stage at the Critérium du Dauphiné and finished sixth overall.

Team manager Jean-René Bernaudeau said “Christophe has confirmed just what a great rider he is. Suddenly, everyone remembers how close he came to winning a stage in the 2009 Tour, and how well he rode in the 2008 Vuelta at a time when cycling was going through a bad patch.” 
The team again received a wild card entry to the race and always repay the race organisation with an aggressive showing. Stage 1 finishes close to Voeckler’s home, expect the French champion to go on the attack. We wish you all success in the Tour de France!

 

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Colnago C59 being built up in quick time! :-)

19 Jun

Some great footage here folks of a Colnago C59 Italia being built up in quick time to some great background music! Anyone spot the music?