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And just like that, the WorldTour season has restarted. Adelaide once again plays host to the Santos Tour Down Under, providing a great place to see all the new gear and team outfits in one sunny place.
When it comes to equipment, the 2019 men’s WorldTour is a story of trading places. The BMC team is now the CCC team, riding Giant bikes for 2019. BMC bikes are now under Dimension-Data riders, and that team’s former Cervelo bikes are now with the Sunweb team.
Despite all the change, the only fresh bike brand to the peloton is that of the iconic Eddy Merckx name, which replaces Factor Bikes at AG2R La Mondiale. The Merckx name was last seen in the WorldTour in 2011 under QuickStep Floors, and the brand is now under the ownership of the Belgium Cycling Factory, the company that also owns Ridley.
Where previous years saw teams dabble with disc brakes, 2019 seems to be the year of permanent adoption. Bora-Hansgrohe, Deceuninck Quick-Step, Katusha-Alpecin, Trek-Segafredo and Dimension Data have gone exclusively with discs for 2019 (at least for road races), and many other teams are using disc brakes on specific bike models.
In gearing, 12-speed is looking set to become the new norm. While Shimano is assumed to be working on its 12-Speed groupsets, both Campagnolo and SRAM-supported teams are riding on all new yet-to-be-announced groupsets. In both cases, the responsible companies are mum on the specifics of their new electronic groupsets, and in SRAM’s case, they made it a point to not allow media to photograph the bikes (we snuck some in any way).
SRAM has become a major product partner of Trek-Segafredo and continues to support Katusha-Alpecin, too. And Campagnolo has added AG2R, making four teams in total to use the Italian components. The remaining 12 teams are riding Shimano Dura-Ace R9150 or R9170 Di2.
Beyond that, there are a few powermeter changes, some new computer sponsors and the rare component sponsor change.
So grab a nice refreshing drink (to help you feel like you’re melting at the race with us), kick back, and see all the bikes of the 2019 men’s WorldTour.
AG2R La Mondiale
Having ridden Factor bikes for the past two seasons, this French team is re-introducing Belgium-designed Eddy Merckx bikes to the WorldTour.
Back at Eurobike 2018, we were told Belgium Cycling Factory had acquired the brand and were in the process of overhauling the existing bikes. The bikes being ridden here are models and designs from the previous brand’s owners, albeit now with minor design and layups tweaks. It’s safe to assume we’ll see entirely new models under riders as the season progresses.
For now, the team is riding the Eddy Merckx EM525 equipped with Campagnolo groupsets. However, with Rotor, KMC and Mavic also supporting the team, it’s only a “soft” sponsorship from Campagnolo, which also explains why the team are the only ones still on older 11-Speed EPS. All told the pictured bike weights 7.24kg.
Bike pictured: Eddy Merckx EM525 of Nans Peters
Astana Pro Team
It’s business as usual for Astana in 2019, and the team bikes look extremely similar to what they rode in 2018.
FSA’s We wireless groupset doesn’t appear to be ready for the prime time given the Kazakhstani-registered team is still riding Shimano Dura-Ace components. These are mated with FSA K-Force PowerBox powermeter cranks (made in collaboration with Power2Max) and matched cockpits. Corima continues as the wheel sponsor.
Bike pictured: Argon 18 Gallium Pro of Italian David Ballerini
The Merida Reacto and Merida Scultura remain in use for 2019, with a few more disc brakes seen where riders choose the aero Reacto III. It’s likely we’ll see more and more riders in the team move to disc brakes as the season progresses, while “team leaders” are expected to stay with rim brakes.
Looking to the Reacto Disc, the common wheel selection is the new Fulcrum Speed 55T which feature a new wider and faster rim shape. Vision/FSA provide the cockpit components, with SRM supplying its desirable Origin Road Carbon powermeter.
Bike pictured: Merida Reacto Disc of German sprinter Phil Bauhaus
Having gone disc-only for 2019, so much has changed, and yet, so little has changed.
The team will continue to race a mix of the S-Works Sl6 Tarmac and aero Venge, each featuring much the same builds as seen in 2018. Discs present some minor changes, such as a move to different Roval wheels, but otherwise, these bikes look quite similar to 2018.
This means that Specialized takes care of everything with exception to the Shimano groupsets and PRO cockpit components (where bike compatibility allows, most bikes even feature Specialized integrated cockpit components). The Specialized/4iiii powermeter remains, as does the Wahoo Elemnt Bolt.
Bike pictured: S-Works Venge of Australian Jay McCarthy
How do you get your bright orange bidons to stand out for the cameras? Make the bike matte black with subtle branding, that’s how. It creates one of the plainest bikes in the 2019 WorldTour, but sometimes being subtle is of benefit.
Much like it did last year with Subweb, Giant provides far more than just framesets to the team. In addition to the TCR (all-rounder) and Propel (aero) frames, the Giant name is found on the wheels, cockpit, saddle, computer and bidon cages.
Though the Propel is currently disc-only, it’s expected we’ll see the team sticking with rim brakes. This likely means the long rumoured (and UCI approved) rim-brake Propel may soon be seen.
Shimano takes over where Giant doesn’t have parts to offer. However, the recently released Giant powermeter is nowhere to be seen, with the CCC team riding with Dura-Ace units.
Bike pictured: Giant TCR Advanced SL of the United State’s national time trial champion Joey Rosskopf.
The South African-registered team has switched from Cervélo to BMC for 2019 and is exclusively riding discs, too.
Much like the former BMC Racing Team, Dinension Data are likely to spend much of the season on the well-rounded Teammachine SLR01 Disc, with the sprinters picking the newly overhauled wind-cheating TimeMachine R01.
Many of Dimension Data’s previous component sponsors remain, including Enve, Rotor and KMC. Selle Italia replaces Astute as the perch provider.
Bike pictured: BMC Teammachine SLR01 Disc of Dane Michael Valgren.
EF Pro Cycling
2019 brings in a hot new paint and a switch to Power2Max powermeters for EF Pro Cycling.
The team will continue to switch between rim and disc brakes dependant on the bikes used. Where aerodynamics are sought, the new disc-only SystemSix forces the decision, while the lighter SuperSix Evo Hi-Mod is seemingly ridden in the rim brake variant.
Vision remains as the wheel sponsor, while parent-company FSA takes care of the cockpits in place of Cannondale’s own products. This is most obvious with the SystemSix, where the team forgoes the claimed benefits of an integrated cockpit and shielded cabling for a more traditional setup. It’s not pretty (sue me).
Bikes pictured: Cannondale Systemsix of New Zealand’s Tom Scully and Lachlan Morton’s Supersix Evo Hi-Mod.
One of the more colourful bikes of the WorldTour, the French outfit continue with Lapierre bikes, marking a 17-year technical partnership. It’s easily the longest running bike sponsorship deal in the WorldTour. Shimano’s strong connection continues too, with wheels, groupsets and cockpit components (PRO) supplied by the Japanese company.
Like last year, the team will continue to ride both the aero Aircode SL and all-rounder Xelius SL. It’s all rim brakes for now.
Bike pictured: Lapierre Aircode SL of a to be determined rider.
The Russian-turned-Swiss outfit is another team to go disc-only for 2019. With Canyon continuing as the bike partner, and SRAM for the groupset and wheels (Zipp) – it’s almost business as usual. However, new SRAM Red eTap 12-speed groupsets are looking extremely near, and although it seems everyone on the team has strict orders not to discuss it, it’s there for everyone to see.
The team is predominately riding the aero-focussed Aeroad CF SLX Disc at the Santos Tour Down Under, with the lighter Ultimate CF SLX Disc available for use too. At least for Australian racing, we’ve seen both Zipp 303 Firecrest Disc and 454 NSW Disc Tubular wheels in use.
Bike pictured: Canyon Aeroad CF SLX of Russian Vyacheslav Kuznetsov.
The unmistakable Celeste Bianchi’s remain for the Dutch squad. The lightweight aero Oltre XR4 is expected to see the most use throughout the season, although the team has access to the Specialisma and endurance-based Infinito CV, too.
The only equipment change is seen with a move to Shimano Dura-Ace powermeter in place of Pioneer. Pioneer remains as the official head unit supplier, with the team using the new CA600 computer.
Bike pictured: Bianchi Oltre XR4 of Robert Gesink
With a new aero bike and 12-speed electronic shifting, the Lotto-Soudal mechanics were surely busy over the off-season. Team sprinters, such as Caleb Ewan, will spend much of the season on the newly overhauled Noah Fast aero bike, while others will spend more time on the Helium SLX.
The yet-to-be-released Campagnolo Super Record EPS 12-speed is found across all team bikes, with Bora wheels to match. Deda, SRM and Selle Italia continue without change.
Bike pictured: Ridley Helium SLX of Belgium climber Thomas De Ghent.
2019 is simply another number when it comes to Mitchelton-Scott’s bikes. The new colours first seen at last year’s Tour de France continue into 2019, as do all other component selections. The aero Scott Foil and lightweight Addict are the bikes of choice, and the riders tend not to switch between them as often as other teams switch bikes.
This means full Shimano Dura-Ace Di2 groupsets, power meter and wheels remain in use. Syncros provides the finishing components, including saddles. Lastly, Mitchelton-Scott is the only team in the WorldTour on Pirelli rubber.
Bikes pictured: Scott Foil of South African and returning Tour Down Under champion Daryl Impey, and Scott Addict of Australian Lucas Hamilton.
Where Katusha-Alpecin has moved exclusively to discs with its Canyons, Movistar is comparatively conservative in sticking with rim brakes (at least for now).
The lightweight all-rounder Ultimate CF SLX is the common choice with riders, with the Aeroad CF SLX used by select riders for sprint stages.
Much like Lotto-Soudal and UAE Team Emirates, the Movistar bikes feature the new Campagnolo EPS 12-speed components. Power2Max provides team-issue power meters to match the bikes, and Campagnolo does similar to the graphics on the Bora wheels.
Bike pictured: Canyon Ultimate CF SLX of Germany’s Jasha Stterlin.
Along with a new co-title sponsor, the Belgium-registered team is one of the few to move exclusively to disc brakes. The winningest team of 2018 will ride a mix of the Specialized Tarmac and newly-overhauled Venge.
While the team has ridden Shimano components for years, they’re now officially sponsored by the Japanese company, and with that, comes Shimano Dura-Ace powermeters in place of last year’s Specialized/4iiii units. Shimano’s component arm, PRO, provides cockpit components where Specialized integrated pieces aren’t available. And Specialized continues to provide its tyres and Roval wheels.
Lastly, Bryton joins as the GPS head unit provider. A first WorldTour appearance for the budget-friendly GPS company.
A close look will reveal tooled (hex key required for removal) thru-axles. The team uses torqued-limited electric drill drivers for crazily quick wheel installs, with team mechanic Rune Kristenson citing that such a tool allows a front wheel to be changed in just eight seconds, a feat certainly helped by not having lawyer tabs on the fork.
Bikes pictured: Specialized S-Works Tarmac Disc and S-Works Venge belonging to Italian sprint sensation Elia Viviani. The Tarmac tips the scales at 6.9kg, with the Venge just 200g more.
Racing its final year as we know it, Team Sky has started the 2019 season with much the same Pinarello Dogma F10 bike as last year. The only change seen is with a fresh matte black paint which features a rather classy blue fade.
Shimano supplies groupsets, power meters and wheels, while Pinarello’s own component arm, MOST, supplies the cockpits.
We’re told that Sky will likely stick with rim brakes for the foreseeable future, citing that the low weights of rim brakes remain a priority for a team that’s focussed on general-classification results.
Bike pictured: Pinarello Dogma F10 of Germany’s Christian Knees
Almost everything is new for the Sunweb outfit that was previously on Giant bikes. The team perhaps has the most radical bike of the peloton, with the Cervelo S5 and its radical integrated cockpit, disc brakes and external-steerer fork stealing a fair bit of attention. If riders don’t choose the S5, they’ll likely be found riding the lightweight R5 with rim brakes.
Shimano sponsors the team and provides groupsets, power meters, and wheels. While PRO provides saddles and cockpits, at least where Cervelo doesn’t require its own proprietary stuff.
Like so many other teams in the WorldTour, Continental takes care of the rubber, and Sigma makes an appearance by supplying its large but slim ROX 12.0 GPS computers.
Bike pictured: Cervelo S5 of Dutch rider Cees Bol, a bike that weighs exactly 8kg.
Making the swap from Shimano to SRAM for 2019, there’s plenty new for the Trek Segafredo outfit. The team has also moved to disc brakes for 2019, with rim brakes only found on the team’s time trial bikes.
The bikes in use are a mix of the featherweight Emonda SLR Disc and the well-rounded aero Madone SLR Disc. All are fitted with (yet to exist) SRAM Red eTap Hydro 12-speed groupsets and Quarq power meters, which also means we weren’t allowed to photograph them.
Trek’s component company, Bontrager, continues with supplying everything else on the red bikes: including wheels, saddles, cockpits and bidon cages.
Bike pictured: Mixed, with Richie Porte’s Trek Emonda Disc in the stand (no proper photos for this one, thanks to the not-yet-released SRAM drivetrain).
UAE Team Emirates
UAE sticks with what is easily the most Italian bike in the pro peloton for 2019. Names such as Colnago, Campagnolo, Deda, Vittoria and Prologo cover the bikes, with just Look pedals and Stages power meters (new sponsor) spoiling the Italian affair.
Once again, Campagnolo’s Super Record EPS 12-speed groupsets appear on all team bikes.
Much like in 2018, the team will race a mix of the C64 (lugged all-rounder), V2R (lightweight monocoque all-rounder) and Concept (aero). It’s the V2R and Concept that are under most riders at the Santos Tour Down Under.
Bike pictured: Colnago V2R of Portuguese rider Ivo Oliveira.
So if you could take one home, which would it be?