Monday, August 11, 2008

First Look: Blue Cycles new full-carbon tri bike, the Triad

Man, I love getting the inside track. Of course, they say, as in this case, "don't say anything just yet," but fail to realize they're releasing info to a person who's reason for existence it is to shout from the rooftops. I'm working on some goods for Slowtwitch, but wanted to get what little I do know out asap.

The guys at Blue Competition Cycles showed me some something I'd been told was coming: the first full carbon fiber bike from the growing brand. They've made a concerted push in ITU racing, and will have a bike under American medal hopeful Sarah Haskins in Bejiing this coming weekend. Pretty impressive for a company that has been around for less than, what five years?

But they realize who butters their bread—age groupers. Not the ones doing ITU racing, but doing 70.3s and Ironman and non-drafting Olympic-distance racing. So to keep up with the torrid technological spike in the last few years, they got busy. The result: the new Triad.

So, I was told to keep a relative lid on this. I like to push my chances when people say relative. I'll just bank on people not seeing my blog. Understand my quandry as a journalist? Who gets into the business of not telling people news?

Here's what I know—sorta. But I didn't say nuthin....

The new Triad is full-carbon offering which, upon first glance, it has rear chainstays similar to that of the new Scott Plasma, but takes on it's own looks thereafter. The seatstays are ultra low, and the bike has a 1" headtube. Blue's plan is sell this bike complete in a couple of build kits (SRAM Red and Shimano Dura-Ace), wiht Zipp 808 rear/404 front tubulars. They'll also have an Ultegra SL and SRAM Force version , with a more price-point wheelset.

Other details: the rear brake is located under the bottom bracket shell. It will have a BB30 bottom bracket shell with an internal cable run, and a geometry similar to their existing T-16 tri bikes with a 76-degree seat angle (with wide fore/aft variance with the three clamp positions on the post). And my sources say the rear end is super, super narrow—so narrow that a Mavic R-Sys wheel won't go in. Not that you would want to desecrate a bike like that with a R-Sys...

The bike will also come with something unique: regardless the build, once the bike is registered for warranty, Blue will send the buyer a certificate for one free hour of wind tunnel adjustment at the A2 Wind Tunnel, in Mooresville, North Carolina. For those that don't know, The A2 Wind Tunnel is a growing tunnel, which is a spinoff tunnel next to its big brother, the famed Aerodyne tunnel, which is rented out for the next year and a half and running 24/7 testing NASCAR cars and trucks.

So the consumer gets a very, very valuable benefit beyond the bike itself—much better than the ol' water bottle and cage that some shops try to "throw in." When you're buying a bike like this, the fit should be your next purchase... so why not make it happen in the wind tunnel? Just get yourself to Charlotte, hop over to A2 and get a fit that will rival anything you can get in the shop. It's one thing for a bike company to do the aero thing to optimize the bike, which they say they have done in creating the Triad. Few will kick in the extra to look after the rider's own drag.

The Georgia-based company currently has their newest charges, Ironman Coeur d'Alene Winner Heather Wurtele and husband Trevor Wurtele at the N.C. tunnel doing some fine tuning with their bikes for Ironman Canada and Kona.

And the bike will show up under one other person: Haskins. My Blue contacts tell me she was so taken with the new bike that she wanted it for Beijing. So on go drop bars and the bike makes it's race debut in the Olympic Games.

Pricing? Availablity? Don't know yet. I've probably said too much at this point... better sign it off.

6 comments:

Lynchmob said...

Here is to hoping Sarah and her Blue bike make oit to the podium this weekend!!!! Let's go USA

J.Lynch
Dad, Sponsor, Athlete & Business Owner
www.ShowMeCables.com

Lynchmob said...

Sarah will not be on this bike for Beijing. She will continue to ride a standard road frame with shorty tri-bars conducive to ITU style draft leagl racing. She would be under this for any of her non-drafting races (Lifetime Fitness, etc...)

J.Lynch
Dad, Sponsor, Athlete & Business Owner
www.ShowMeCables.com

Anonymous said...

lynchmob
how do you know she isn't going to ride the bike? last time i saw her she was really excited about it and told the group i was with that she was certainly riding it in bejing.

tireguy said...

lynchmob,

looks like the workbench was right. Sarah did ride this bike today.

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cards said...

Wow! this why i like bicycles!