May 6, 2005 – Gerard Vroomen of CervÃ©lo flies into Reggio di Calabria Friday night to deliver the first prototype of the Soloist Carbon (info below) to Team CSC for the Giro d’Italia.
Some Team CSC riders like Jens Voigt swear by the Soloist, which perfectly suits his riding style of long breakaways. Others like Carlos Sastre, the first ever professional cyclist to ride a prototype R2.5, have a preference for the R2.5.
As early as 2001 Cervelo initiated a project called FM28 whose goal was to create a frame with even better aerodynamics than the Soloist at approximately the weight of the R2.5.
Thanks to the feedback of Team CSC the goals and direction of the FM28 project have somewhat changed over the years, but what has remained is the desire to offer a frame that is too good to be true. Now, at the 2005 Giro d’Italia, CervÃ©lo is ready to show this creation to the world.
While this is still a prototype and a few details in shape and lay-up will likely still change, we have to test the frame in the real-world condition of professional cycling in order to determine those tweaks, and so we can no longer keep it hidden. And so we introduce the result of project FM28, the Soloist Carbon.
While some specifications such as the final weight and stiffness properties are not yet finalized as they depend on how the lay-up is changed after Team CSC’s feedback, the following features are certain to be included:
– New profile downtube — Our work into improving the downtube and headtube on the P3 Carbon has directly benefited the Soloist Carbon.
– Horizontal teardrop-shaped sloping top tube — Since the top tube has a slope to it, the aerodynamics can be improved by giving it the proper airfoil cross-section in the direction of the airflow.
– Stealth aero headtube — While the headtube may look round at the front, this is an optical illusion. The headtube is ultra thin and only 1mm wider than the P3 Carbon headtube. Although the leading edge is kept straight, the sides neck down in the center section, resulting in a very good airfoil shape around the headtube in combination with a classic side profile.
– Oversized bottom bracket area — The increased volume of the bottom bracket area provides even greater bb stiffness so that Jens can continue to power away from the competition. The smooth contours of the BB volume help both for this BB stiffness and also for its strength as the fibers have a much more continuous path to transfer the loads better.
– Wolf seatstays — The seatstays have an asymmetric airfoil design from the Wolf family, designed for optimal airflow around a thin frame member interacting with a spinning wheel.
– Laterally stiffened chainstays — The chainstays feature a new design to further improve the lateral stiffness at the bottom bracket as well as the torsional stiffness of the frame.