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Further to the UCI’s confirmation in recent days that a total of eight WorldTour teams will use disc brakes in events in August and September, the Trek Factory Racing team has confirmed that it will debut the technology in the upcoming Vuelta a España.
“We’ll be using the existing Trek Domane Disc platform for the test and adapt it to the riders’ race geometry,” said spokesman Tim Vanderjeugd.
“Markel Irizar [pictured above, right – ed.] is a confirmed test rider for us at the Vuelta – he’s very excited about it. Besides this we’ll be testing different wheel depths, multiple rotor options (mostly 160 mm, but we’ll test some 140 mm too) and multiple brake pads. Everything top of the line Shimano of course.”
Vanderjeugd told CyclingTips that the team may have a second rider on discs in the race, but that this depends on roster selection and which riders are given the nod for the Spanish Grand Tour.
The teams who have signed up to trial the brakes are allowed use them in two events. He said that the second event hasn’t been selected thus far. This, and the identity of the riders to use the discs there, will be finalised at a later point.
He said that the disc-equipped bikes will be approximately a pound heavier than the equivalent non-disc machine.
“For the mechanics this will obviously be a challenge, but they are eager to learn from this as well,” he said. “The rider’s spare bike on the car will be a ‘normal’ bike because we don’t want to over-complicate wheel changes and instead go straight away for a bike change.”
He said that the Trek Factory Racing team is keeping an open mind and wanted to see how things worked out.
“The goal is to find out what disc brakes bring to racing. We don’t know if disc brakes are really an advantage. It’s very possible and this is a great opportunity to study and understand that. We’ll cherry-pick some stages and try to find answers.”