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Record-Breaking Rides

Competing at the highest level of any sport requires absolute dedication and commitment to ensure that every aspect of physical conditioning and mental strength are as prepared as possible and peak at just the right time. For cyclists, hour upon hour of training rides and track laps, gruelling turbo sessions, and a fanatical devotion to nutrition and diet are part of everyday life. This kind of devotion to a goal is something that Dame Sarah Storey is all too familiar with, having recently broken Mike Kenny's record to become the most successful British Paralympian of all time. In doing so, Sarah has won an astounding seventeen gold medals and twenty-eighth medals in total across eight Paralympic Games. Truly unstoppable!

As long-standing supporters of Sarah, we understand how important these preparations are and the role an athlete's equipment plays to achieve their goals. With the dust settling after what was a record-breaking eighth consecutive Paralympic games for Dame Sarah Storey, we take a closer look at the bikes that Sarah rode at the Tokyo games.

Boardman ATT 9.8 - Paralympic C5 Time Trial Gold

Two years after taking gold in the time trial at the 2016 Rio Paralympic games on her Signature TTE, Sarah began preparations for her TT title defence at the Tokyo games. After some exploratory work in the wind tunnel, it was evident that the most significant opportunity for Sarah, given her "non-textbook athlete" aerodynamics, was to refine her position on the bike for more aerodynamic efficiency. For that reason, Sarah opted for the more conventional ATT frameset and T10 fork; with its conventional stem and cable arrangement, it offered more opportunities to adapt and improve Sarah's position on the bike.

Sarah in the Wind Tunnel

Over what was to be three years of development, Sarah and Barney worked closely with the Boardman team to identify the most aerodynamic position that maximised her strengths and was sustainable over distance. The need for a custom cockpit was born out of this investigation. Sarah and Barney then worked with legendary cycling engineer Dimitris Katsanis and the team at Metron Additive Engineering to produce the adjustable 3D printed titanium cockpit that met Sarah's positional requirements and the predefined aerodynamic recommendations, the results of which is unmistakable on the bike.

"When you are riding a machine that feels so good underneath you and feels so balanced, it really is a joy. I'm so delighted that it was that race that took me to the record-equalling sixteenth gold medal and the stepping stone I needed for my the road race." - Dame Sarah Storey.

Frame: ATT 9.8 C10 Carbon - 1250 grams
Fork: T10 C10 Carbon Fork - 370 grams
Groupset: Shimano Dura-Ace Di2
Chainset: InfoCrank Power Meter - 172.5mm
Chainrings: Pyramid Cycling - 54 Tooth
Cassette: Shimano Dura-Ace - 11-28 Tooth
Lube: Pyramid Cycling Chain Wax
Rear Wheel: Revolver Asymm Carbon Rear Disc
Front Wheel: Revolver Kronostok FW55.5 Carbon
Tyres: Schwalbe Pro One TT Tubeless 25mm Clinchers
Saddle: ISM Adamo Attack TT
Cockpit: Metron Bespoke 3D Printed Titanium TT Bars
Weight: 7.5kg

Boardman SLR 9.8 Caliper - Paralympic C4/C5 Road Race Gold

Only two days after the time trial success, Sarah had to decide which bike she would use for the 79.2-kilometre course at the Fuji International raceway. Having both rim and disc versions of the SLR, Sarah opted for her SLR 9.8 caliper as it edged the disc version on weight which would, given the course profile, be more beneficial, and despite the appalling conditions, Sarah was confident in the bike and her ability to take her to the record-breaking win.

"One thing I love about the Boardman range is that there is a bike for every scenario. So for me, I chose to ride the rim brake bike as I wanted the lightest option to get up the climbs, and I was confident about my cornering ability in what was an incredibly wet race." - Dame Sarah Storey.

As with the ATT, Sarah's SLR's have to be adapted to accommodate her impairment, with both the front and rear brake activated through the right-hand lever. After a UCI Belgium cobble race in 2010 on standard bars, Sarah identified the need for some adaptation, initially starting with a simple toe strap over the hood lever acting as a safety belt for her left side. Later, and to allow Sarah to get out of the saddle on the drops, Sarah and Barney worked with a British Cycling engineer to develop a concept that was the blueprint for what that Sarah uses today.

"We really wanted a system that we could use on conventional bars, adapting bars quickly and simply. On the back of the work we have done with Metron Additive Engineering on the TT bars, we are looking to further develop the road bar design for Paris and beyond" - Barney Storey

Frame: SLR 9.8 Caliper C10 Carbon - 790 grams
Fork: SLR C10 Carbon - 370 grams
Groupset: Shimano Dura-Ace Di2
Chainset: Infocrank Power Meter - 172.5mm 
Chainrings: TA Zephyr 53/38 Chainrings
Cassette: Shimano Dura-Ace - 11-28 Tooth
Lube: Pyramid Chain Wax
Wheelset: ZIPP 202 Carbon Tubular
Tyres: Schwalbe One "Sarah Storey" Tubulars 25mm
Stem: Zipp Service Course SL - 140mm
Bars: Zipp SL-70 Aero Handlebar - 380mm
Saddle: Pro Falcon Saddle
Weight: 7.0 kg

Boardman SLR 9.6 Disc 

The most recent edition to Sarah's Boardman fleet is the SLR 9.6 Disc. After overcoming some challenges with the single lever braking requirements for disc brakes (solved with a Clarks cable pull, hydraulic-piston caliper system), Sarah can now take advantage of the improved modulation and stopping power and helping to level the playing field when racing against able-bodied athletes.

"when competing in the women's peloton the disc brake option is incredibly useful for me as groups can often be choppy, slowing or changing direction suddenly and I need to be able to stop or scrub speed quickly on just that one lever." - Dame Sarah Storey

Frame: SLR 9.6 Disc C10 Carbon - 890 grams
Fork: SLR C10 Carbon Disc - 370 grams
Groupset: Shimano Dura-Ace Di2
Chainset: Infocrank Power Meter - 172.5mm 
Chainrings: TA Zephyr 53/38 Chainrings
Cassette: Shimano Dura-Ace - 11-28 Tooth
Brakes: Clarks CHM-8 Hydro-Mechanical
Lube: Pyramid Chain Wax
Wheelset: ZIPP 202 Carbon Disc Clincher
Tyres: Schwalbe Pro One TT Tubeless 25mm
Stem: Zipp Service Course SL - 140mm
Bars: Zipp SL-70 Aero Handlebar - 380mm
Saddle: Pro Falcon Saddle
Weight: 7.7 kg

Boardman is proud to support Sarah in achieving her goals, and we are looking forward to what is still to come.