With its pick of bicycles from the MERIDA range, TEAM BAHRAIN VICTORIOUS is guaranteed to compete on cutting-edge equipment. Now that disc brakes have become the accepted norm in the peloton, the addition of tubeless wheels and tyres, complete cable integration and optimised aerodynamics have added to the versatility and further elevated the performance of whichever MERIDA a rider wishes to choose.
Thanks to their eye-catching colour design in the head tube area, the team bikes of TEAM BAHRAIN VICTORIOUS are easily spotted in the peloton, with red and blue elements also respecting the national colours of the Bahraini kingdom.
After the team switched to disc brakes on the REACTO and SCULTURA models for the 2020 season, the TIME-WARP TT model for time trialling will be the last MERIDA bike to move from rim to disc brakes. More significantly, TEAM BAHRAIN VICTORIOUS has teamed up with wheel supplier Vision and tyre partner Continental to go all-in with tubeless technology.
Built around Shimano’s new, semi-wireless Di2 shifting system, the fifth generation of the SCULTURA won races at the highest levels even before it was officially presented to the public in the late summer of 2021, taking victories at the Criterium du Dauphiné and the Tour de France. The latest version of the REACTO also demonstrated its versatility when Sonny Colbrelli piloted this aero bike to a win in an epic, wet and muddy edition of the Paris-Roubaix classic.
Whether in practice or competition, data acquisition is crucial in modern cycling, and for this TEAM BAHRAIN VICTORIOUS is relying on the latest R9200P generation of Shimano’s power meters. These are neatly built into specifically designed Dura-Ace cranks and deliver more accurate data than ever before. Shimano also supplies the electronic, semi-wireless Dura-Ace Di2 drive train for precise and fast gear changes, plus hydraulic disc brakes for reliable stopping power in all weather conditions.
One significant change for the 2022 season comes with the wheels; while Vision continues to supply TEAM BAHRAIN VICTORIOUS with a choice of either the Metron 45 SL or 60 SL wheelsets, they are now the disc brake, clincher tyre models rather than glued-on tubular tyre versions. The Metron 45 SL wheels are built for all-round performance, blending lightweight and predictable handling with aero advantages. For even greater drag reduction and heaps of stiffness to resist peak loads, sprinters opt for the Metron 60 SL wheels. All wheels used by the team are hand-built and trued in Italy; they spin on low resistance ceramic bearings.
The switch to tubeless builds has been gradual, with the team working closely with tyre supplier Continental and using selected races to see how tubeless technology fares in competition. When Sonny Colbrelli rode tubeless wheels and 32 mm wide Continental GP5000S TR tyres to victory at Paris-Roubaix, this technology passed this final exam with flying colours.
FSA and Vision continue to supply cockpits and seat posts. After an intense testing period, a significant part of the team roster has opted for the one-piece Vision Metron stem/handlebar combinations, which offer superior aerodynamic performance and improve stiffness during sprints. Most climbers will choose the FSA K-Force cockpits for their low weight and incredible stiffness. Vision is also the supplying partner for the one-piece Metron TT cockpits and offers custom 3D-printed handlebar extensions for the team leaders.
Saddles are supplied by Prologo, all with carbon rails and carbon shells. Riders can choose between the PAS system (with central hole) or models with a closed shell; they can also opt for Prologo’s unique CPC anti-friction system. The compact Scratch M5 saddle offers a higher level of comfort and impressive weight at just 140 grams. Prologo also takes care of the other contact point by providing the bar tape.
After winning numerous awards and tests in special-interest magazines, MERIDA’s aero bike, the REACTO TEAM showed its true versatility in 2021’s gruelling Paris-Roubaix classic. Built to slice through the air and transfer every watt of power from the pedals to the ground, the latest iteration of the REACTO TEAM can run tyres up to 30 mm wide. The wider tyres add compliance on rougher roads to the mix – something that aero bikes were not previously known for.
Introduced during the 2021 season and officially launched in September 2021, MERIDA’s fifth-generation SCULTURA blends low weight for climbing performance and perfect cable integration with truncated foil profiles for aerodynamic ability. It now flawlessly incorporates Shimano’s novel, semi-wireless Dura-Ace Di2 groupset too. Apart from its handling and low weight, team riders also praise the SCULTURA TEAM’s endurance-boosting compliance and perfectly balanced handling, making it a proven winner in World Tour races.
New for the 2022 season, the TIME-WARP TT is the final MERIDA team bike of TEAM BAHRAIN VICTORIOUS to switch from rim to disc brakes. While disc brakes will provide reliable stopping power under all weather conditions and can save vital fractions of a second, they also allow tyres of up to 28 mm to be fitted, which further enhances rolling resistance and grip. Despite the higher system weight and necessary changes to the frame and fork, the MERIDA team managed to keep the weight of the TIME-WARP TT constant, giving the riders the full benefit of disc brakes without any weight penalty.
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