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Tour de France pro bikes: Personalised bikes

The custom finishes and features found on the bikes of Thomas, Sagan, Valverde, Nibali and more

Some Tour de France riders use bikes and components with custom finishes and personal touches, and here are some that we've spotted in this year's race. 

Alejandro Valverde, Team Movistar​​

Tour de France 2019 Valverde Canyon Ultimate CF SLX - 1 (2)

World Road Race Champion Alejandro Valverde has rainbow stripes everywhere – and why not?

Tour de France 2019 Valverde World Champs stripes - 1.jpg

Even his sunglasses and the Boa dials on his shoes have been given the rainbow treatment. 

Tour de France 2019 Valverde World Champs stripes - 1 (1).jpg

If you somehow managed to miss all that, he has 'World Champion Innsbruck 2018' written between gold stripes along the top tube, and don't you forget it!

Vincenzo Nibali, Bahrain–Merida

Tour de France 2019 Nibali Merida Reacto KOM - 1 (2).jpg

Bahrain-Merida's Vincenzo Nibali has a Merida Reacto KOM in his own finish. Built up with the sponsors' usual components, the Merida Reacto aero road bike weighs around 7.2kg. As part of the mission to get the bike down to 6.8kg, the UCI's minimum weight limit for racing, Merida has given the bike a minimalist finish.

Tour de France 2019 Nibali Merida Reacto KOM - 1.jpg

The decal on the down tube is in red, pink and yellow, representing the leader's jersey of the three Grand Tours, each of which Nibali has won. The triangular cutouts are shark fins, Nibali's nickname being 'The Shark'.  

Tour de France 2019 Nibali bike - 1

Nibali has his name and shark motif on the top tube of his Merida Scultura road bike and on his cranks too.

Tour de France 2019 Nibali bike - 2

Geraint Thomas, Team Ineos

Tour de France 2019 Geraint Thomas Pinarello Dogma F12 dragon - 1.jpg

Although he has been among the biggest names in cycling for many years and won the Tour de France in 2018, Geraint Thomas keeps things simple with just a dragon motif at the head tube/ top tube junction of his Pinarello Dogma F12. 

Rohan Dennis, Bahrain–Merida

Tour de France 2019 Rohan Dennis Merida Time Warp TT World Champs stripes - 1.jpg

Rohan Dennis abandoned this year's Tour de France last week but he rode the team time trial on his Merida Time Warp TT decked out in world champion's livery. The Australian rider won the World Time Trial Championship in Innsbruck, Austria, last September. 

Tour de France 2019 Rohan Dennis TT bike detail - 1

He has kept it relatively understated with lines of rainbow stripes on the fork legs, top tube and chainstays.

Tour de France 2019 Rohan Dennis TT bike - 1.jpg

This dog on the seatstays has rainbow stripes on its glasses.

Peter Sagan, Bora–Hansgrohe

Tour de France 2019 Peter Sagan Chasing Rainbows Venge - 1.jpg

Peter Sagan has his own 'Chasing Rainbows' paint job – the rainbow theme chosen because he's a three-time World Champion. There's a 'rainbow pearl pigment' in the paint that sparkles in different colours depending on how the light catches it.

Tour de France 2019 Sagan Chasing Rainbows - 1

Specialized actually does two versions: Overexposed on a light (white/silver) base, and Underexposed, like this bike, on a dark (black/charcoal) base.

Tour de France 2019 Peter Sagan stem - 1.jpg

Sagan also has his Joker-style 'Why So Serious?' design on his stem, which is one of his tattoos and has become something of a personal motto.

Tim Wellens, Lotto-Soudal

Tour de France 2019 Tim Wellens Ridley.jpg

Lotto-Soudal gave Tim Wellens' Ridley Helium SLX a polka dot makeover when he took over as King of the Mountains. 

Tour de France 2019 Tim Wellens SRM.jpg

He has a spotty SRM PC8 head unit too...

Tour de France 2019 Tim Wellens Look pedals.jpg

...and a similar finish to his Look Keo Blade Carbon pedals.

Thibaut Pinot, Groupama–FDJ

Tour de France 2019 Pinot saddle - 1.jpg

Thibaut Pinot has discreet customisation on his Prologo Nago Evo saddle – discreet to the point of being hardly visible. 

Daniel Oss, Bora–Hansgrohe

Tour de France 2019 Daniel Oss stem - 1.jpg

You'd struggle to call it customisation but Italy's Daniel Oss has a sticker on his stem: "F**K OSS! Professional punk and cyclist dreamer".

Get loads more Tour de France 2019 tech here.

Mat has been in cycling media since 1996, on titles including BikeRadar, Total Bike, Total Mountain Bike, What Mountain Bike and Mountain Biking UK, and he has been editor of 220 Triathlon and Cycling Plus. Mat has been technical editor for over a decade, testing bikes, fettling the latest kit, and trying out the most up-to-the-minute clothing. He has won his category in Ironman UK 70.3 and finished on the podium in both marathons he has run. Mat is a Cambridge graduate who did a post-grad in magazine journalism, and he is a winner of the Cycling Media Award for Specialist Online Writer. Now over 50, he's riding road and gravel bikes most days for fun and fitness rather than training for competitions.

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