First from the blocks in the annual race among WorldTour suppliers to announce the coming season’s bike is Bianchi.
The Italian manufacturer has unveiled the machine the Vacansoleil-DCM team, whose riders include Dutch hardman, Johnny Hoogerland, and Belgian climber, Thomas De Gendt, winner of the Queen stage and podium finishers at this year’s Giro d’Italia, will ride next season.
At its heart is a carbon frame adhering to many of the standards typical on high-end contemporary frames.
The seat stays are “Ultra Thin”, the headset tapers from 1.5” to 1-1/8”, and the bottom bracket shell accommodates a press-fit, BB30 unit from FSA.
Steering duties are handled by a full carbon fork, whose tapered steerer tube matches the dimensions described above, and is held in the frame with an FSA Orbit headset.
FSA’s extensive presence is evident also in the chainset (a K-Force Light EVO Carbon with a decidedly non-compact 53-39 configuration), the finishing kit (a Plasma Compact integrated bar and stem combo) and the brakes (the new SL-K units).
Shifting comes courtesy of Campagnolo’s top of the range, 11-speed Campagnolo Super Record EPS components: shifters, derailleurs, and cassette. A gold KMC XL 11-speed chain completes the drivetrain.
Vacansoleil-DCM will roll on Fast Forward’s F6r full carbon hoops (on flat stages, at least): a 60mm deep, tubular rim, laced with Sapim CX-Ray spokes.
A Selle San Marco Regale saddle sits atop Bianchi’s detachable, aero profiled carbon seat mast.
Pedals are LOOK’s Keo Blade, one that claims the widest platform on the market.