BP4 Helps Juan Yapur Win at the Digicell Tour of Belize
Here is a perfect illustration of how adding or changing components can improve performance. Juan Yapur is one such rider who took a look at the BP4 handlebar and knew there had to be something to it. Well Juan, you are a smart and aware man. Juan had only been riding our bars for a couple weeks before he did the Valentine Tour. It is a 5 day stage race in Belize. Now I know this is not the peleton racing in the Tour De France, but it is a multi stage race. Juan was not part of a team like the title sponsor Digicell, but that did not stop him from not only winning the master class, but the overall title at the age of 46.
What Juan does not know is how much stronger he is going to get because of the improved positioning and biomechanics. You see, when you optimize position, you can optimize performance. I know that seems obvious, but let me tell you, the cycling industry at large appears to either ignore this fact or it flew right over their heads. Now Juan won by a slim 9 seconds on the final 90 mile stage and I have to wonder, did riding in an ideal optimized position give him that advantage that he was victorious? Duh, of coarse it is, that was a rhetorical question. We have been riding the BP4 for the last 18 months and every one of us has improved in our power output, especially climbing.
Why you may ask? Well, it’s really quite simple. Let me explain. When all of your body parts are aligned properly you get to maximize your performance. I’ll illustrate with this example; if all runners ran with their toes turned in, they would be at a clear disadvantage to anyone who showed up and ran with the feet straight ahead. What would that show? It would be a glaring example of the handicap of all the other competitors. It is also true with cycling. If your body position is not aligned properly, you are handicapping you performance AND the ability to maximize your performance. The cycling industry as a whole has been spending years, and a ton of money, trying to improve aerodynamics of their components. That is all well and good until you put a human on the bike. What has been missing the most important of the 3 touch points. Yep, you guessed it, it’s you hands. I guess the industry never had the time to bother with bringing your arms, hands and wrists into proper positioning. It’s sad, and quite frankly embarrassing, that the handlebar has un-effectively not been changed in over a 100 years. Are you F*&^ing kidding me? What an oversight! We had the opportunity to bring our bars to one of the big boys (name withheld to protect the clueless) and we showed them our bars and explained the benefits. They then tell us of the wind tunnel and how their bike save X amount of minutes off of a X amount of distance. I look at the bars and all they did was raise them so the rider sat more upright. No improvement in position. In fact, the tops were flattened out with no tape which tells me that they relegated them to “non useful” status. I swear to god, my heads going to explode if one more industry “expert” talks about handlebars being aerodynamic. They are only aerodynamic in the wind tunnel without a rider on it. It’s like putting a fairing on the front of an elephant and claiming improved performance.
We can also claim improved aerodynamics because we proved it on a velodrome using the Alphamantis system. The problem with that is that it loses it’s meaning when the buzz word over the last years has been nothing but that word-aerodynamics. We at BP4 decided to take a different approach to our marketing. We claim to be the worlds first TT bar for climbing. Why did we do that? Quite simply, nobody else can claim a TT bar for climbing. Because of the bend we provide in the bars, the hips are more open)because of the more upright position), the hands and wrists are correctly aligned. Because of the position you can generate more power earlier in the stroke cycle. More power over a longer pedal stroke gives the rider the ability to improve power output.
Do you see where I’m going with is? Back to the example I used about runners. You can only get so fast in a certain position and until that position is corrected, ultimate power and performance will be realized. The fact of the matter is that we more aerodynamic, descend better, and allow you to climb like a mountain goat, but that might appear to be bragging, so until we get a bigger saturation in the market and riders have that “light” go off over their heads that is a better alternative to what has been available, we will hang our hat on the “TT” thing.