Mavic were very keen to show off the new Carbone SLR wheel, and an very innovative bit of kit it is too. The rim extrusion and carbon section are lighter for 09, but the big change is in the spokes. Mavic have used a rim-to-rim build, so spokes start at one side of the rim and cross the hub to the other side. The tension in the spokes is the only thing that really keeps them in place - the spoke has a rectangular block half way that sits in between stops on the hub flange. The hub flange is stronger because it's not drilled at all, and the system has many of the advantages of a bonded spoke construction but with the obvious advantage that if you crash and break a spoke, you don't have to throw the whole wheel in the bin. Also updated for 09 is the Ksyrium Elite, which borrows a lot of the technology of the Carbone Sl including the spoke lacing and asymmetric rim. It's effectively a completely new wheel, and for the same price as last year you're getting a 100g weight saving too. Mavic have also teamed up with Powertap, and for the first time they're offering the Powertap hub as a factory build with either the Carbone SL clincher or Carbone Pro tubular rim. Mavic's shoe range has been a big hit in the last year. The range starts at £64.99 but if your pockets are a bit deeper you can have a pair of Theo Bos's yellow Zxellium SSC shoes for £239 - they feature a 4mm thick full carbon sole, completely bonded construction and a carbon heel counter. The lightest road shoe in the world (Mavic claim...) was also on display - the Huez costs £199 and claimed weight is just 195g a pair. The Zxellium Ultimate, at 205g, is also a super-lightweight but if you feel you really need the Titanium fittings then be prepared to part with £279.
Dave is a founding father of road.cc, having previously worked on Cycling Plus and What Mountain Bike magazines back in the day. He also writes about e-bikes for our sister publication ebiketips. He's won three mountain bike bog snorkelling World Championships, and races at the back of the third cats.