Ever get the feeling someone’s watching you?
Peter Sagan hasn’t let his rivals for the Tour de France green jersey out of his sight throughout the race and his team’s title sponsor and bike supplier, Cannondale, produced this simply superb custom SuperSix EVO Hi-Mod for the Slovak sensation ahead of the Grand Départ.
In truth, Sagan has been peerless in his pursuit of a third successive green jersey, wearing the
maillot vert since stage three.
Cannondale have produced some of the most memorable custom paintjobs for their riders in recent seasons, including a
Hulk-themed SuperSix EVO Hi-Mod for Sagan last year, and one-off machines for every rider at this year’s Tour.
This, however, is their most audacious effort to date. Let’s take a closer look.
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Peter Sagan's Cannondale SuperSix EVO Hi-Mod
Cannondale produced his superb - and quite scary - custom SuperSix EVO Hi-Mod for Peter Sagan ahead of the 2014 Tour de France. All Cannondale riders are on the SuperSix at the Tour - it's the American firm's flagship machine, based around a super-light frame made, as the name suggest, from high-modulus carbon fibre and said to weigh less than 700g. It's not just the paintjob that's custom - Sagan's frame pairs the toptube of a 58m bike with the headtube of a 51cm frame, allowing the six foot rider to adopt an aggressive, low and long position.
I've got my eyes on you
Sagan started the 2014 Tour with his eyes fixed on a third successive green jersey and has dominated the points classification, wearing the maillot vert since stage three. In fact, the 24-year-old's consistency over the first week was remarkable, with seven consecutive top five finishes on a variety of stages which includes bunch sprints, lumpy terrain and cobbles.
Waiting for a win
A victory has proved elusive for Sagan, however, and he remains on four career stage wins (three in 2012, one in 2013), indicated by the gold '4' on his race number. Stage 19 could see Sagan break his duck at this year's race and his Cannondale team will look to put the pure sprinters, including three-time stage winner Marcel Kittel, under pressure on the category four climb which comes 13km from the finish.
Sagan has been dubbed the Slovak sensation since bursting on to the scene in 2011 and his country's coat of arms adorns his FSA stem. An SRM computer displays the considerable wattage measured by Sagan's power meter.
Here's a closer look at that power meter, mounted to a 53-39t SRAM Red chainset with Cannondale SiSL2 cranks, which are CNC-machined in two aluminium parts and then bonded together in a super-light design.
SRAM Red (but green)
SRAM also provide the rest of the groupset components on Sagan's machine, though the top-of-the-range Red groupset (which normally has, erm, red detailing) is matched to the trademark colour of the team nicknamed The Green Machine. SRAM supply three teams at the Tour de France: Cannondale, Omega Pharma-QuickStep and Tinkoff-Saxo.
Sagan sits on a Fizik Aliante saddle, mounted to a carbon fibre FSA seatpost. The bull graphic on the saddle is a reference to Fizik's 'Spine Concept', whereby riders are labeled as a snake, chameleon or bull according to flexibility, with bull being the least flexible.
Sagan's custom paintjob was produced by an Italian firm, Artechdesign.it. These slender seatstays are designed to flex a little to improve comfort and handling, by allowing the rear wheel to track more smoothly along the road.
Sagan has a range of Vision wheels to choice from, depending on the terrain and conditions, and while these super-deep Vision Metron 81 wheels are unlikely to have seen much action at the Tour, they make for a super-aggressive looking machine.