After the corona postponement of the Ironman in Hawaii in 2021, Utah offered a way out. The 28-year-old Blummenfelt completed the very difficult course in just 7 hours, 49 minutes and 16 seconds.
The Olympic champion did the 180 km cycling on a new prototype bicycle. The most striking thing about this bike is the lack of the top tube, which is reminiscent of the Pinarello Parigina used by Jan Ullrich and Bjarne Riis during the 1997 Tour de France.
In addition, the prototype consists of a wide front fork with a wider fork position. Reminiscent of the Hope x Lotus HB.T track bike, on which the track cyclists of Great Britain shone at the Tokyo Olympics.
This design is intended to break the airflow over the rider’s legs and body in order to reduce rider and bike drag.
And there are still novelties. The bike manufacturer also raised Blummenfelt’s handlebars to a higher incline so that he could almost rest his head between his arms. This provides a huge aerodynamic advantage.
In cycling, the inclination of the aerobars (of the handlebars) may not exceed 15 degrees, as required by the technical regulations of the UCI Cycling Federation.
And the UCI also has stricter rules for the frame. In 2000, the futuristic frame design was banned from all UCI competitions, after which the bicycle frame had to consist of a traditional pattern and thus be built around a main triangle.
Both in terms of handlebars and frame, the Blummenfelt bicycle is therefore not UCI-compliant. This is therefore the main reason why this prototype bike will not immediately be seen in the cycling peloton.
Wout van Aert will therefore never be seen on a similar time trial bike without a top tube in the Tour de France.