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by Mark Zalewski
December 15, 2016
In today’s CyclingTips Daily News Digest: Dutch cycling federation launches investigation into harassment as riders speak out; Cadel’s Race gets curtain-raiser crit on Melbourne’s Albert Park F1 circuit; Peter Sagan considering using disc brakes for 2017 Paris-Roubaix; Tiesj Benoot extends with Lotto Soudal until 2019; Ekimov elected as president of Russian Cycling Federation; Team UniSA-Australia names Tour Down Under first four; Geraint Thomas unable to defend Commonwealth Games title; Rohan Dennis still eyeing hour record; Joe Dombrowski’s uphill hour record; Latour breaks finger during training camp; Amador fined for riding on highway; Thieves use cycling apps to target victims; Movistar’s holiday season video.
There has been controversy and debate about the use of disc brakes in pro cycling, but the rider who is arguably the biggest classics star in the peloton may be set to make the switch. World champion Peter Sagan has been testing a Specialized Roubaix disc-brake bike at the Bora-Hansgrohe training camp in Spain, and is likely to make a decision in the coming weeks about using the machine in Paris-Roubaix.
On Tuesday, the Bora-Hansgrohe team presented its key riders, including Sagan, its new jersey, and its 2017 race bikes at a team camp near Valencia, Spain. Sagan’s bike was on display, and aside from the new team colours, the most striking aspect was the disc-brake rotors adorning the machine. CyclingTips spoke with the squad’s new technical director, Lars Teutenberg, who confirmed that the world road champion is considering the new system in some of the spring races.
“We are allowed to use discs in races again,” Teutenberg said. “It is all new bikes for us, so we have to go through the process, get the riders on the bike and get them confident in using the disc brakes. It is only a question of when the big change will come. So far we are working on both systems in parallel.”
Disc brakes were tested at a small number of events in 2015, and then again in 2016. However a crash during Paris-Roubaix saw Movistar rider Fran Ventoso injured. The Spaniard publicly claimed that the leg laceration he suffered was caused by a disc brake rotor, causing the UCI to abandon the trial use of such equipment. However a forensic study commissioned by the World Federation of the Sporting Goods Industry later concluded that a chainring was more likely the cause of the injury.
With disc brakes returning to the peloton, any decision by Sagan to get on board with this technology would be seen as a major endorsement of the technology. In addition to being a two-time world champion, Sagan is also the defending Tour of Flanders champion, and will be one of the top favourites for every Spring Classic he enters.
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