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Sprint rivals Mark Cavendish (Omega Pharma-QuickStep) and Andre Greipel (Lotto-Belisol) arrived at the Tour de France as newly-crowned national champions of Great Britain and Germany respectively.
With Cavendish already riding a custom Specialized S-Works Venge, presented to the Manx Missile after his 100th professional win back in May, it was the turn of Greipel’s machine to get a makeover.
Greipel, who stands six feet tall and weighs 80kg, is nicknamed The Gorilla thanks to his huge (in pro cycling terms, anyway) stature on the bike. Belgian bike brand Ridley needed little inspiration, then, in giving the 30-year-old’s Noah FAST a new lick of paint.
The Noah FAST is Ridley sprinter’s bike, designed to be both aerodynamic and super-stiff. It was originally unveiled in 2011, when it became the first road bike with fully integrated front and rear brakes.
Other aero features, which have now carried over to the Ridley Dean FAST time trial bike, launched ahead of the Grand Depart in Corsica, include textured ‘F-Surface’ strips which are designed to let air travel smoothly around the frame instead of detaching and creating drag, as well as the ‘F-Splitfork’ to minimise air turbulence around the front wheel.
But they’re not the only details on Greipel’s machine intended to help The Gorilla add to his career haul of five Tour de France stage win – open the gallery above for more.