Since the original GoFundMe, the ambitious project to independently evaluate the aerodynamics of some of the latest and greatest triathlon bikes (alongside older but proven incumbents) has expanded.
The slate of bikes for this testing -- which will be tested in both rider on and rider on configurations -- is as follows: the Cervelo P5, the Cervelo P5-X, the Ventum One, the Premier Tactical, the Diamondback Andean, and a well-configured (but older design) Felt B series.
The medium remains the A2 Wind Tunnel in North Carolina -- now set for the full day of April 18, 2017 (next Tuesday). The funding for the testing is both crowd-sourced (here, by you) and privately raised. We have obtained equipment provision/support from Dan Kennison of Premier; Jimmy Seear of Ventum; and Dave Luscan of All3Sports Atlanta. Presiding over the protocol are Brian Stover; Heath Dotson; and Geoff (from the A2 tunnel).
Support from manufacturers notwithstanding, this project is by athletes and for athletes. For most of us, the most fundamental question remains: which triathlon bike is fastest?
Beyond that, the ancillary questions are many: How much do these bikes differ from best to worse? Are the differences so small as to be wiped out by individualism? Dollar for dollar, are these aero gains worth our money? Should we choose a mold-breaking, UCI illegal frameset design or a traditional, time-tested double diamond -- and is there any evidence to pick one or the other, from a speed perspective? Do we want rim brakes or disc brakes, and what are the aerodynamic trade offs? Weighing performance and price value, do we buy from a direct-to-consumer provider (Premier) or should we go with a traditional retail distribution product (Cervelo)?
I hope to lend credence to these questions in the output, which will be a detailed report, which will be made available not just to contributors but publicly. This project may be the first of its kind in many ways, given the independent nature, breadth, and relevance of the testing to triathletes, especially those who are considering the purchase of a new, modern superbike; who are contemplating the pros and cons of disc brakes; and/or who are considering a Cervelo, say, from a local bike shop versus a value-loaded option from Premier (or Ventum).
This is an exciting time, and I hope this will be an insightful and informative exercise for the triathlon and cycling communities.
I will do my best to continue using this platform to update supporters (with pictures, etc.)