Almost without exception, all professional riders ride tubular tyres. Tony Martin yesterday bucked the trend and rode a bike equipped with Continental clincher tyres on his way to gold in Copenhagen, Denmark.
Martin’s Specialized Shiv was fitted with a special pair a new HED Jet 6 SCT clincher front wheel and Jet Stallion clincher disc rear, fitted with a pair of Continental Grand Prix TT tyres. With a clincher bead.
The obvious reason for this is clear, the wet weather forecast for the Worlds and the technical nature of the course. Given the many 90 degree corners decent and reliable braking performance would pay off, and the aluminium braking surface on Martin’s rims will have given him a small advantage of his rivals, who were all riding carbon tubulars.
For the tyres the HTC-Highroad team used the new Continental Grand Prix TT. It’s actually based on the Grand Prix RS, a tyre that was only available for a limited period in the German market last year. It obviously had potential, as the company decided to develop it further with the help of triathlete Chrissie Wellington, who used for an entire season, proving (if proof were needed) that clinchers are fast and reliable enough for top flight competition.
The new Grand Prix TT tyre boasts the latest evolution of the patented Black Chili compound and features a 300TPI nylon case and Vectran anti-puncture breaker. It was launched at Eurobike earlier this month and will be available in the UK in January 2012.
Weight for the 23mm tyre is just 180g and it was launched at Eurobike earlier this month and will be available in the UK in January 2012.
But with a limited production run, you’ll need to be quick to get your hands on a pair, as they’ll be flying off the shelves now they’re officially the quickest tyre in the world.
More on Tony Martin’s bike setup soon…
Discuss time trial tyre choice in this forum thread.