What Handlebars Do Pro Cyclists Use? | Abu Dhabi Tour 2018

What Handlebars Do Pro Cyclists Use? | Abu Dhabi Tour 2018


(swoosh) – Today, we are going
to talk to the riders here at the Abu Dhabi Tour
about handlebar choice, because there is a big choice,
in terms of aero or standard, but also the width, and
indeed, the shape of the drops. (mellow music) – With Caleb Ewan now, who’s got a fairly extreme position as you all know and also some fairly extreme
handlebars here at the front. You’ve gone for the traditional drop and only 40 cm edge to edge, I think. – Yeah, well I actually
had to get these bars specially made for me because this is the normal bar over here, I guess it’s like a new style kind of drop but I felt like I couldn’t
really sprint on that as well, so I preferred the traditional drop. So, yeah, they made me this bar like this and yeah, it’s quite narrow,
but then the stem’s super long so, yeah, it’s a bit of a, I guess it’s like a bit
of an extreme position but, yeah, I prefer to sprint like that. I think my upper body compared
to my legs is quite long so that’s why I run such a small frame, but then my reach is quite long. So, yeah, I guess it helps
me to get into that position. – And finally, quite
a few riders still use the traditional drop, not so
many members of the public do. Have you got any reasons
for that, do you think? – [Ewan] To be honest, I just
prefer the feeling of like, when you’re holding here and sprinting, I feel like you can really
pull on the bars more. I think it’s just like
personal preference. Everyone’s different, so
that’s just what I prefer. – You’ve got some fairly
extreme handlebars as we might expect,
what have you got there? – I believe they’re 38’s,
they’re the smallest we can get for our mass. I think they do have
a women’s model at 36, but 38’s good enough. And when we did a lot
of wind tunnel testing, we found that not only
is it good to be low, but it’s also very good to be narrow. You know, tucking the
shoulders in and everything. So the idea with this is I can just be in my relaxed position and be aero. – But you didn’t find
that at a certain point, when you’re really narrow, that it kind of makes your elbows go out at all? – No, when I actually ride,
I still ride like that. You know, my wrists are inside. It’s not like I ride like
that, so I still drop in. And no, it’s, you know when you do it for the first one week,
okay it’s a bit different. But after that, it’s fine
and then when you go back to like 42’s, it’s like driving a bus. – How much thought have you
put into you handlebar choice? – They’re flat on the top and they’ve got some rounded
bottoms, that’s about it. They’re the super ergos, pretty standard. A little bit flared, 42 on the
bottom and 40 across the top. So probably a little bit easier, so you don’t hit your
forearms on the bars as much when you’re out of the saddle, but there’s only so much
you can do with a road bike. We stuffed up a little
bit back in the day, because I always had 42’s but, so we always measured from the hoods, but the 42 on the hoods
but 44 on the drops. So we’ve gone, obviously,
back to 40 and 42, which is a little bit better for me. – [Interviewer] 38 centre
to centre at the top and 42 on the drops. How did you arrive at this choice of bar? – I didn’t choose,
that’s how they make it, so I normally, it was,
for years I’ve been 42, just a round, standard classic handlebar, and then, when we changed
to Enve, they had this bar and I wanted to try it
because it was flat on the top and the idea was to use the flat bit as kind of a rest for my arms. You can ride, like if
you’ve just got a round bar, and you hit a hole, or
you hit, after a while you get pain in the arm,
but this you can ride for hours, if you want. – Have you experimented much
with the shape of the drops? You’ve got reasonably compact shape here. Other riders, such as Caleb
Ewan, that we spoke to earlier has got a much more traditional drop. – Yeah, like I say, I used
to just have the classic one and then I tried this bar and,
honestly, at first it felt, I didn’t really like it, I
wanted the drop to be lower. Because like you said, this is too narrow. But then you, it’s like a balance. Because the other bar didn’t
have the flat bit on the top so I just sort of came to abandon that. – I think about, I don’t
know, maybe the large one is more comfortable, but I
don’t have really big shoulders so I can stay on with
40 handlebar and yeah. When you do the sprint it’s
all about positioning aero and with the shoulders, with the best aero composition we can. So with all the integrated stem and handlebar from
Specialised for the Venge one and all the cable is inside,
so it’s a good solution. It’s compact, curved, I have
an integrated one in the start and then I change with this one. I think it’s quite comfortable and then, also, I can
pull really, really well with the arms also. And yeah, also you can see the
shifter in the good position to change, so to have a
fast change in the sprint and, yeah, I think this position, the down position, I
used just in the last K, the last few K’s, so
because it’s so low, no? Because I want to be aero in the sprint and then to be comfortable
I can stay on the levels. – And how different is
this shape and width to what you would use in the velodrome? – It’s quite similar. It’s completely the same,
the curve and everything because I use always the same
measurement and everything. I try to use the same
measurement and handlebar and all the same same stuff on the track because I want to jump from road track, from road to the track
and from track to the road really quickly without any issues. (horn music) – I’ve ridden 42 centre to
centre since I was a junior. Since I was a whippersnapper. Yeah, I’ve always found that it fits. You know, it just feels perfect and you know I think if you go, some people think if you
narrower, it’s more aero, but then, you know, if you go narrower you can tend to ride with
your elbows out a bit more, so, yeah, I’ve just found this
a comfortable set up for me. – And you’ve got a traditional, almost a Merck-style drop there. Have you experimented on
that side of things at all? – [Luke] I’ve ridden these
bars for five years now. Just the traditional kind
of quite deep handlebar. I think the only change that we got coming is there’s the integrated,
all-in-one setup, which I haven’t got yet. They haven’t made the all-in-one
for this shape handlebar, so I think they’re in the
process of making it now, so soon it’ll be all-in-one. – I’d love to tell you there was, like, real specific request on
my part to Canyon for 41’s, but with the integrated
bar system that they’ve got that’s as narrow as they
get, whilst still having the 12 or 13 cm length on it. On the road bike, actually, I’m more about what’s comfortable. And the big thing for me is just having a flat section just here. I don’t like having any kind of dip. And then having a curved drop, rather than any sort of bump in it. I find if I’ve got, what’s it called? Like, where it’s more ergonomic. If I’ve got that, then I start getting sort of dead fingers and stuff. – Would you say you spend
more time on the hoods, you know, even when
you’re trying to get aero, than you do on the drops? – Yeah, yeah in training, I
try to spend time on the drops, but even like yesterday
in the late hour I found, I don’t really remember where I was, but I kinda stop thinking about it when I’m focused on
just trying to go fast, but I sort of getting
crouched down on the hood or using the drops, using both. As long as I get low enough, that’s sort of all that matters. – This year we’re sponsored by Vision, so they provide us with
this aero handlebars, which I think are great because
they’re quite comfortable, but still offer you
all the aero advantages of the other handlebars. Previously in my career, I’ve
been using narrower handlebars but these are obviously like a combo, so they only came in limited sizes. So this year, I’m using our regular 42 cm. Before I was using 40 cm when I was still using
aluminium handlebars. And yeah, but I like this,
these are pretty good. – And in terms of the
shape, you see some riders have a more traditional drop. You’ve got the more compact one. Was that a conscious decision that you came to after experimentation? – I’ve always used the
traditional shape ones, but they don’t make them
in the aero version, so I have these now and
I like it, it’s okay. – So quite a varied choice
amongst the pro riders. Now a couple didn’t
want to be interviewed, because they don’t have much choice in terms of width and
drop from their sponsors. Right, if you’ve enjoyed this video, give us a thumbs up just down below. Subscribe to GCN Tech
by clicking on the globe and then if you’d like to see how riders choose their stems, you can
find that video just over here.

100 thoughts on “What Handlebars Do Pro Cyclists Use? | Abu Dhabi Tour 2018

  1. Not that I'm bothered by it or anything, but it looks like you have a speck of dust on the camera sensor. I can see this in the shot with the helicopter, it is on the right side of the video, just letting you know!

  2. Elia Viviani is such a cool guy. He gave long and informative answers in all the videos I've watched so far. Really appreciate it 🙂

  3. 5:50 I thought Team Sky was sponsored by Wahoo when it comes to bike computers, but he has a Garmin… Can cyclists make a personal choise?

  4. Thanks, Dan, and great to hear the riders talk about their parts preferences. And some funny quips, too, like 'when you go back to 42s, it's like driving a bus.'

  5. I use an FSA 44cm compact just because it feels more stable at higher speeds ( i'm too old for all that racing malarkey these days )

  6. I had 38 cm bars on my last bike (late 80s Centurion Dave Scott). Felt a bit twitchy compared to 42 cm bar. It was a traditional bend too. My favorite set up is a compact drop 42 or 44.

  7. I got a good one for you GCN . If the pros are using tubular tyres why do they get so many flats ? Shouldn't they be more protected from pinch flats ?

  8. 2:20 Rohan Dennis – BMC, have to be a special type of superergo – cannot find any type of 40 on top with 42 on bottom – or is it another type??? thanks

  9. So the pros tend to prefer narrower and traditional drop and are often limited by choice as the manufactures want to make wider, compact drop bars. Eddy was right!

  10. Rohan Dennis – "Flat on the top and they've got some rounded bottoms"…that about sums up my knowledge of handlebars 🙂

  11. Adam Hansen likes it extremely aero, he would propably ride an aero bar attached to the lower headset bearing if it was mass start legal. On the other hand Elia Viviani likes to ride so relaxed that he uses a “comfort table“.

  12. If you have a drink every time a European rider says "And eeeeh… yeah," in any interview, you will die of alcohol poisoning.

  13. FSA compact 44’s:
    Flat top,44 at drops,42.5 at hoods,hoods turned inwards slightly…perfection. Tried narrower over the years…more aero but too twitchy.

  14. So the pro's always ride the best kit? Nah! A lot of compromise there with bar width and shape, especially with integrated combo's. At least we can choose exactly what we want to ride! That's a club-rider-win in my book!

  15. All these fixed aero bar/stem combinations with the drops not parallel or anywhere near parallel to the ground, utter crap

  16. I like traditional bars. You can get aero without having to slam the stem. Makes riding the hoods more comfortable.

  17. Is it UCI legal when a bar is specially made for you? I always thought they have to use what is currently available to everyone

  18. So pros just chose bars based on preference.. No other reason like us couch riders such as aero or power outputs

  19. Hm. My old club, the East Midlands CC, organised the 1970 World Championship Team TT trials.
    I pushed off the avaricious perhaps, Les West (who was exhorting his fellow team members with the advice "remember lads, no pennies today") and I noticed he used Giro Di Sicilia bends.
    I went to Sid Mottram's shop, bought a pair and used them for years.
    I thought you should know this.
    (I don't get out much).

  20. This shows exactly what I found – you can't get hold of a traditional shape 38cm bar anywhere! Ewan's custom bars look great, I guess I just need to start winning sprints in UCI races!

  21. Wow, so interesting that some riders dont want to be interviewed, there must be quite a lot of riders who does not like the selection of handlebars from their sponsors

  22. Viviani regarding his sti shifter position…. "and my shifters are in a good position for a fast change in the sprint"….. while his bike has sprint shifters on it >.<

  23. Some of these guys have ZERO opinion! How do you get to this level and know ABSOLUTELY nothing about your rig, or any have any insight about it?!

  24. Great video as it shows not all bars are the same. Some manufacturers are doing what they want instead of providing riders with what they want – this is a bad move.

  25. I guess it's more of a matter of comfort than anything else.
    It won't make you go faster.

    Personally I prefer narrower handlebars(40cm) for the agility in the city rides.

    I don't race.

    I don't see anybody selling 38cm.
    I'm willing to try it if I can find it.

  26. Exelente sigan poniendo los subtítulos en español….aprendo más del ciclismo mundial y además llega a más personas aficionados en todo el mundo

  27. The reason why the general public riders don't use the traditional bars is due to availability. I prefer the traditional bars and find I have to do some hunting to find the right ones. Having been a racer/rider since the mid 80s I found the new bend is rubbish for sprinting.

  28. Have 3 road bikes all with 42cm but one bike has flat top aero bars for comfort, which stops pins & needles/numbness, the round shape bars nowhere near as comfortable.

  29. Those integrated handlebars on the Specialized are beautiful. It's crazy how just a handlebar upgrade can break the budget 🙁

  30. Integrated cable routing is far more important than the "bling" factor of having a single-unit "barstem" with fancy graphics. Get the cables cleanly routed through the bar, stem and head tube. Now you can worry about optimizing fit for the rider and then the shape of the leading edge and the barstem joinery.

  31. I can't afford this nice stuff. Our family was soooo poor that our front and back door were the same door. In fact, we were so poor that we had to eat cereal with a fork to save the milk. Why, Im so poor that I cannot even pay attention.

  32. I have a Easton 44cm. Aero. It's extremely confortable, because it flexes a bit in the thin aero section, but I would rather a 38cm or 40cm, i'm a thin guy.

  33. I can't comprehend why they still make non-aero handlebars. I, for one, would never buy one – and that while I do not compete.

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *