Colnago’s latest Prototipo frameset will break cover under the auspices of the UAE Team Emirates this weekend, with riders such as Tadej Pogacar’s debuting the new model before it reaches the market.
The Prototipo features a completely new method of construction for Colnago, comprising a sophisticated fabrication process that combines both monocoque and modular construction processes, allowing the iconic Italian brand to optimize keys areas of the frame.
Specifically, this lends Colnago greater control over the lamination process, resulting in a more accurate application of the carbon fiber in order to fine-tune the handling and ride characteristics of the frame.
So, Colnago will be testing five variants of the Prototipo in-the-field with theUAE Team Emirates before deciding on a final construction.
“To improve the performance of this frame we used a totally new method – that is to collaborate directly with the UAE Team Emirates riders, proposing to race with frames produced with different carbon laminations. The ultimate goal is to achieve the best lamination for a frame that must be as versatile as possible, suited to the needs of sprinters, rouleurs and climbers alike, and to be at the top in the different phases of a race,” explains Davide Fumagalli, Colnago Head of R&D.
“While computer and wind-tunnel tests are important, they have limitations. It is difficult – if not impossible – to replicate the race-specific situations, the irregularities of the course, the stresses of the terrain, the aerodynamic turbulence, the accelerations in the different moments of the competition. At the level of development we have reached, it is becoming increasingly difficult to achieve improvements. In this way, by taking advantage of the experience of those who ride their bicycles for many hours a day, we feel we can make our racing bikes take a further and important step forward,” he adds.
Additionally, the development of the Prototipo involved renown bike designer, Torgny Fjeldskaar, who has designed some of the most iconic bike models of the last 20 years and has unrivaled experience in the world of automotive and industrial design.
“First of all I am very proud to be able to collaborate with one of the most important brands in the world of cycling. The starting point in the development of the Prototipo was to create a totally performance-driven frame; that is, with a design clearly oriented towards obtaining the best technical performance. The objectives we set ourselves with Davide and his team, and on which we worked, involved achieving greater stiffness in the areas where stress is greatest from pedaling plus lower aerodynamic drag against the overall weight of the frame. I think the most important work was to improve aerodynamics through that new head-tube design. This also improved stiffness, which makes it even more responsive,” says Fjeldskaar.
It will be interesting to see what the testing yields, and what design Colnago ultimately arrives at.
In the meantime, we can enjoy watching Pogacar put the Prototipo to task.
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