Riding a time-trial is the most demanding discipline when it comes to aerodynamics. Almost every big team has a team of experts who constantly works to improve the equipment to be lighter, faster, and comfortable.
The team partners and sponsors play an important part in this process, together with speed engineers and riders, they set out to create tomorrows innovation. Hundreds of combinations and prototypes of frames, parts, wheels, tires, helmets, rider position are tested in the wind tunnel or on the track.
Castelli has been at the forefront of creating enhancing performance clothing since 1979 when the company was crowned with the prestigious Corriere dello Sport Discobolo award for introducing aero clothing to cycling.
When Castelli in 2007, with Team Saunier Duval, introduced the first aero jersey used by the pro’s. Castelli completely revolutionized race
clothing, and has been imitated by nearly every manufacture and team.
As a result it’s no wonder, that aero jerseys get more and more popular between amateur cyclists for road racing. Time Trials are the Champions League for introducing innovations, because every little detail can decide between winning or losing.
It’s not by chance that Team Garmin-Sharp-Barracuda is dominating the race against the clock, and this SpeedSuit plays an important part in their series of success. Two-third of aerodynamic resistance is created by the rider and only 1/3 from the bike, so a lot of time can be saved here.
Ryder Hesjedal’s Giro d’Italia victory came down to only 16 seconds between the 1st and 2nd place. A lot of little things went into Ryder’s Giro victory including giving him the most aerodynamic clothing in the race. The team also won the Giro Team Time Trial in Verona, Dave Zabriskie smashed his rivals in the Tour of California time-trail.
Thankfully this winning speed suit is not only privileged to the Garmin riders. The Body Paint SpeedSuit it available in Castelli colors with excately the same innovative features and winning technology as the one the pros’ wear.
Lets have a closer look at the nearly seamless Speed Suit. As part of Castelli’s top range, indicated RossoCorsa, the speedsuit offers a lot of high-end features:
Nearly seamless construction to gain optimal aerodynamics. Added dimples on the lower part of the shorts provide a smooth fit and optimized airflow – quite an important part for a race-suit against the clock.
The new leg grippers secure a perfect fit without irritating the skin because grip material is directly integrated into the elastic leg- gripper. Another special area is located at the armpits. A special construction causes some kind of wing effect when lying on the aero bars and creates a positive impact on the rider’s airflow.
Comparing the back side of different skinsuits, the Castelli suit offers another eye-catcher: A race number flap. This special feature was created to pin the race number in the aerodynamical best way. Simply fix the number beneath this additional panel, to hide it from unwanted flow-turbulence.
Last but not least, thumb-loops fix the sleeves and prevent them from riding up. The pro’s all-time favorite Progetto X² Air seatpad has got a few improvements for 2012 and does a perfect job. Small perforations ensure better breathability and prevent the pad from absorbing too much sweat or getting wet.
If you want to benefit from all these qualities, the Body Paint 2.0 speedsuit should fit very tightly (almost like a second skin). It may feel uncomfortable while standing, but once pedaling in aero position the fit and feeling is unbelievably snugly. And, not to mention the mental advantage knowing that you are wearing the most winning, and the fastest kit out there.
More information on the Body Paint 2.0 SpeedSuit, go to product page >>
Text: Bernhard Plainer (a keen cyclist who’s crazy about bike performance) – twitter: @hobbybiker
Photo: Erich Plainer, Garmin-Sharp-Barracuda