In Ribble Pro Cycling’s first participation at the Road World Championships, both Dan Bigham and John Archibald competed for Great Britain in the new Mixed TTT event. Following brilliant riding from the whole team of 6, they exceeded all expectations and placed on the podium, taking GB’s first senior medals at the championship.
Following the event we caught up with rider (and self-declared aero-obsessive) Dan Bigham to find out just how they managed to go so fast.
Congratulations on winning a bronze medal firstly, talk us through the initial emotions, what was it like sitting there on the stage?
Actually really good fun. We had all of the splits coming up and the live coverage. My phone was going wild and the UCI stage manager was going crazy at me for looking at it on stage! The nerves really built as we closed in to the final wave. To pull out the 2nd fastest male time against a stacked world tour field, and snatch the bronze medal by a handful of seconds was awesome!
And the event as a whole, do you think it worked? Are you looking forward to more mixed relays?
I like the dynamic. Time trials can become a delayed inevitable result as typically the fastest hold on to finish fastest, but when half way through the fast may become slow, or the slow may become fast, the race is incredibly exciting. I think yesterday demonstrated that well!
Now the bike, you were involved in the design, tell us a bit about how this came about?
Ribble wanted to iterate and improve on some key aspects on their Ultra TT. We discussed these candidly and worked together on the research, design and testing of each improvement. From a riders perspective, it’s nice to be involved in the process from the off and be allowed to truly influence the perform of the equipment you’re supplied by your partners.
I’m assuming there’s some secret Wattshop tech throughout however, let’s start with those bars?
It’s a component we’ve been developing on the track for nearly 2 years now, and have brought a fully UCI compliant version to the road. Beyond the 7-10w aerodynamic improvement, they are incredibly stiff and supportive which truly inspires confidence to stay planted on the extensions throughout the course.
But it’s not just the bars is it, everything is optimised to go quicker. What else have you added and how much of a difference do you really think it makes?
There are lots of small details that people may spot. Both John and I are running CeramicSpeed throughout the bike: wheel bearings, BB and the oversized pulley wheel system too. I’m running a Pyramid Cycle Design 60T 1x chainring on a SRM Track Science powermeter. Although the course was hilly a 32 cog was all that was required up the steepest bergs! View Speed aero skewers give a little aero and mass improvement. The difference that I really like is Ribble’s commitment to every improvement; supplying us with a super light Ultra TT just for this race. The lightest paint job possible with just Ribble in blue sparkle on the downtube saved us 300 grams.
Thanks Dan for sharing these details with us and from all here at Ribble Pro Cycling we just want to congratulate Dan and John for fantastic rides! We’re sure we’ll see a lot more of these bikes on podiums in the future.