The WorldTour peloton is cycling’s equivalent of Formula One, but unlike Bernie Ecclestone’s circus, the fans are allowed close to the machinery on which their heroes compete.
The technological developments that will one day become standard fare on shop-bought machines typically are showcased in the first instance on the bikes ridden by cycling’s elite professionals.
Technical trends are easy for the practiced eye to spot, but more interesting still are the idiosyncrasies that make a rider’s bike – a tool of the trade at this level – his own.
The biggest names in the sport distinguish their machines with custom paint schemes, or equipment either just released or not yet available to the public. Look closely, however, and you’ll see that every machine is as individual as the rider – even those of the domestiques.
We’ll set the scene for a host of pro bike features coming to RCUK throughout the Giro d’Italia with a look at some of the more interesting details from the paddock at Belfast’s Titanic Quarter.