Bikes of the Bunch: BT Road Bike

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Bike Technologies Australia (commonly known as BT) is one of the biggest names in track bikes. The company has a history of building frames with a distinctive curved top tube that extends through the seatstays and in the mid-2000s the company made a brief foray into the road bike market. The result was the BT Road Bike, which we feature in this edition of Bikes of the Bunch.

It’s hard to know exactly how many BT Road Bikes were made but according to Steve Sansonetti from BT — a former track cyclist and the son of the company’s founder, Sal Sansonetti — they were pretty much only built for the Australian team for the Athens Olympic Games in 2004.

According to an article on Cycling News from 2004, the first customer for the BT Road Bike was actually Dutch multiple-time world and Olympic champion on the track and road, Leontien Zijlaard-van Moorsel.

kogaZijlaard-van Moorsel went on to win the 2004 Olympic road ITT on the BT Road Bike frame, despite the fact, as ABC Radio National’s Saturday Extra reported in 2011, the bike was rebadged as a Koga under mysterious circumstances (and scandle ensued).

The bike featured in this post belongs to Melbourne cyclist Brett Jarvis. Brett was searching for a rare Corima Puma road frame when he chanced upon an image on the BT website showing a road version of the company’s Stealth model.

Brett gave Steve Sansonetti from BT a call to try and get his hands on one of the BT Road Bikes but was told they didn’t make them any more due to them being banned from competition.

“I left him my details in case a second-hand one ever came up. He called me a few days later and said he’d found one unused at the AIS if I still wanted it”, Brett told us. “I tried to haggle on price but he was in the box seat and I was already hooked.”

Brett tells us he was attracted to the clean, aerodynamic look of the design; a design that existed well before the aero bike trend of today. He was also enticed by the rarity of the frame; the fact it was made locally in Melbourne helped seal the deal.

Brett bought the BT Road Bike as a frameset, allowing him to build it up as he saw fit.

“The Campagnolo Record was the best groupset around and in my opinion the best looking. I couldn’t find a spoked set of wheels that looked any good so I went with the Corimas and I think that they’re a pretty good match for it.”

Brett built it up with compact cranks “as it doesn’t like going up hills”, partially due to the fact that it weighs close to 9kg. Brett also describes the bike as “super stiff, so you get beaten up by it on a long ride … but it loves a tail wind!”

For a while the BT was Brett’s only bike but nowadays he only rides roughly once a month.

We hope you enjoy the pictures of the BT Road Bike below.

If you’ve got a rare, custom or otherwise interesting bike you’d like us to feature on Bikes of the Bunch, please get in touch via email.

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