Tadej Pogacar seems set on winning just about every stage and jersey at the 2022 Tour de France. But to do so, he needs a pretty special bike. We took a look at the team’s Colnago V3Rs prior to the race and we’ll also give you what we know about Pogacar’s fancy new prototype road racer.
The bike is designed to give Pogacar a lightweight and aero setup and while we’re yet to get any performance claims, the Slovenian’s multiple stage wins and current stranglehold on the yellow jersey mean that it can’t be a bad bike.
The Prototipo comes with some easy-to-spot aero tube shapes, fully internal cable routing, A slightly sunken bottle cage mount area on the down tube and a slimmed-down head tube.
CermicSpeed's SLT bearings sit in the headset while the seatpost looks to be a D-shaped design that will likely be specific to the frame. While we've looked hard, we can't see whether Colnago has moved to a threaded bottom bracket or stuck with a press-fit system.
Colnago says that from a design point of view, the key points in the development of the Colnago Prototipo are the thin and hollowed head tube with “deep and marked veins”, in addition to the “larger and more robust bottom-bracket area.”
Colnago also says that a different approach has been taken with the Prototipo, with different carbon layups being tested on parts of the C68. Colnago explains that this was possible as the C68 uses a lugged construction, making it easier to customise the layup on an individual tube.
Colnago’s current road race bike is a very Italian affair for the team sponsored by the UAE state with a Campagnolo Super Record EPS groupset takes care of the shifting and braking.
The rear derailleur handles the shifting through the 12 cogs of the cassette. It is quite a compact design with plenty of carbon on display.
A Super Record cassette goes down to an 11T cog and offers the team a choice of 29, 32 or 34T largest cogs.
Just to make the bike a bit more expensive, UAE uses SRM power meter chainsets to provide training and race data. There are no markings on these chainrings, but given that the Shimano-sponsored pros are now using 54T outer chainrings, we’d suspect that Pogacar has something similar from Campagnolo.
The wheels are another interesting piece. On a few of the bikes that were mounted to the top of the team cars, we saw some minimally-branded wheels from Campagnolo. We believe this is a lighter model of the Bora Ultra WTO 45 that the team is saving for the bigger mountain days to come. Mounted to these tubeless wheels are Pirelli tyres.
What we do know is that the hubs on these wheels are beautiful. Campagnolo certainly still knows a thing or two about making top-end wheels.
Being a full Campagnolo bike, the riders use Campagnolo’s callipers and rotors with 140mm rear and 160mm front. Look provides its Keo Blade Carbon pedals.
The front of the bike completes the pricey build with a Deda Alanera integrated cockpit. The team gets special sizes made so that they can be long and narrow.