A few of the world's best joined a few second-tier teams in a battle against the clock for the final stage of Three Days of De Panne, a Belgian warm-up race ahead of the Tour of Flanders and Paris-Roubaix. Team Sky's Bradley Wiggins stormed to the win aboard a custom-painted Pinarello Bolide.
With gold targets decorating the length of the top tube commemorating world-championship and Olympic wins, Wiggins' white Bolide cruised over a 14.8km course in De Panne, a coastal Belgian town near France.
The bike itself was not new, a Bolide frameset with the custom-fabricated carbon bars replete with custom Di2 buttons, Shimano Dura-Ace gear (with 56/44 chainrings) and PRO wheels, Stages power meter and an Antares saddle with a grip patch Fizik has stitched onto the nose for Team Sky riders.
A few days after the phenomenally windy Gent-Wevelgem that blew bikes and riders off the road, the De Panne time trial was still affected by gusts. But riders didn't alter their wheels choice much if at all.
Veteran BMC team mechanic Ian Sherburne said in all his years of working for pro teams, he's never seen a rider choose to go with a road bike instead of a time trial bike — no matter how windy it is. "Wheel choice will vary by rider — it's scaled by the size of the guy and their personal preference in relation to the wind and course — but I've never seen it so windy that a rider would ask for a road bike."
Most riders used a rear disc and a front wheel in the 50mm depth.
For a detailed look at the time trial bikes and gear of teams from Team Sky to 3M, look through the gallery above.
Fizik sewed these grip patches on Antares saddles for Team Sky