Aside from day one of this year’s Tour de France, Peter Sagan hasn’t worn his standard team kit since 2011 — and even after the first stage, he immediately traded his Bora-Hansgrohe jersey for the green jersey of the current points leader, since stage winner Mike Teunissen (Jumbo-Visma) couldn’t wear that one and the maillot jaune at the same time. As of Monday, he earned the green for real. To say that Sagan has been very successful in recent years would be quite the understatement.
Given his superstar status in the sport, it makes sense that team sponsor Specialized would not only supply him with his own custom-painted machine, but also an entire line of similarly shimmery gear under the Sagan Collection umbrella, which currently consists of two complete bikes, three framesets, shoes, a helmet, a kit and t-shirt, and even tires (tires!).
Sagan’s bike of choice for most stages of this year’s Tour is the Specialized S-Works Venge, which the company just revamped a few months ago. Improved aerodynamic performance over its predecessor was an expected improvement, of course, but the company also claims that it’s lighter, more structurally efficiently, more comfortable, easier to work on, and — dare I say — it looks better, too.
In Sagan’s case, it’s perhaps more important that that relatively deep-section tubes offer a generously sized canvas for paint, and given moves by several other companies in recent months, it’s clear that shape-shifting, ultra-shimmery finishes are very much en vogue.
As has long been the case with Sagan, his positioning is very aggressive. The stem isn’t quite slammed atop the headset, but it measures 150mm center-to-center, and now that Specialized is making Venge-specific stems in his preferred lengths, he no longer has to resort to non-sponsor components here like he had to do before. One other notable detail is that he runs Shimano Dura-Ace pedals with the longer spindle option; narrower Q-factors aren’t universally better for everyone, after all.