While Bradley Wiggins’ departure from Team Sky means his focus is now very much the track, the 2012 Tour de France winner is still riding in style when out on the road, at least if his custom-painted Pinarello Dogma F8 for the Tour of Britain is anything to go by.
We snapped Wiggins’ bike when he made his road racing debut for his eponymous team at the Tour de Yorkshire – but this is a different beast altogether.
The striking custom black and gold paintjob may be the first thing to catch your eye but Wiggins’ Pinarello Dogma F8 is also equipped with
SRAM’s brand spanking new Red eTap wireless groupset.
We took a closer look at Wiggins’ as the peloton prepared to tackle the route from
Prudhoe to Hartside Fell on stage five.
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Sir Bradley Wiggins' custom-painted Pinarello Dogma F8
Though we snapped Sir Bradley Wiggins' bike at the Tour de Yorkshire, the Pinarello Dogma F8 has been given a lick of paint and a new custom design for the Tour of Britain, with the white frame swapped for this striking black and gold machine to commemorate Wiggo's world, Olympic and Tour de France successes.
Eyes on the prize
A gold outline of Sir Brad stares out from the toptube, which is also decorated with a red, blue and gold Union Jack and a list of the 35-year-old's biggest achievements on the bike, with each gold medal marked with a gold roundel. Since winning individual pursuit gold on the track at the 2003 World Championships in Stuttgart, Wiggins has added five more world titles on the boards, three Olympic gold medals also on the track, the London 2012 time trial on the road and, last year, world time trial gold in Ponferrada. His 2012 Tour de France win is also included on the toptube palmares.
The golden theme runs across the bike. Gold decals on both the Pinarello fork and Zipp's Firecrest 404 wheels complete the look. Team WIGGINS are rolling out on Continental's 25mm Competition ProLtd tubular tyres.
SRAM Red eTap
SRAM's Red eTap groupset launched last month and Wiggins is one of the first riders to use the wireless electronic groupset. The front and rear derailleurs are powered by interchangeable, rechargeable battery packs (you can see it jutting out from the back of the rear mech), with a claimed 1,000km/60 hours of battery life. Both derailleurs have a sleep mode, so they power down if you go 30 seconds without shifting to save battery.
SRAM have completely reworked the logic of their shifters for Red eTap but changing gear on the new gruppo is designed to be as simple as possible. The right hand shifter downshifts the rear derailleur, the left shifter upshifts the rear derailleur and if you press both together then the front mech will be called into action (shifting the chain either up or down depending on what chainring you’re currently on). Being wireless, the shifters need their own power source and run off individual CR2032 coin batteries, which SRAM say should have around a two-year life depending, on how often you change gear.
Structurally there's no change in the cranks and chainrings between the SRAM Red 22 groupset and SRAM Red eTap, though the new groupset does get updated branding and graphics. That said, Wiggins is using regular Red 22 cranks and rings, paired with an SRM power meter. Wiggins has been a long-time user of Speedplay pedals.
In the shops...
If you want SRAM Red eTap for yourself then the new groupset is slated for spring 2016 availability, priced at £2,039 for the full groupset (or you can upgrade the shifters and derailleurs separately if you already have Red 22).
Despite a host of change across the bike, the handlebar and stem remain the same as what Wiggins used at the Tour de Yorkshire. Having used PRO components (along with a Shimano Dura-Ace Di2 groupset and Shimano wheels) when riding for Team Sky, his new team uses Pinarello's own-brand Most Tiger Ultra Lite 3K carbon fibre stem and matching carbon bar. The headset top cap gives the bike a personal touch, with a mod roundel in the team's red and blue colours.
Most riders have their favourite saddle and the Fizik Antares perch Wiggins is using at the Tour of Britain is the same model he used at Team Sky. Wiggins prefers a little extra padding on his saddle compared to a typical Antares. Wiggins' seatpost is also now branded with Sky - who support the team - as opposed to WIGGINS like it was in Yorkshire, while a WIGGINS sticker marks the saddle height.
While Wiggins' is riding as the team's number one - after a bit of creativity when it comes to his race number - the Tour of Britain is actually just part of his preparation for the track season. Wiggins has admitted he would love to try for a stage win, but - after stage five at least - his team-mate Owain Doull is leading the way on the GC, placed fifth overall as the highest-placed Brit in the race.