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OTHER CYCLING : Sundry Items Last Updated: 13 Apr 2022 - 6:01:42 PM

FIFTYONE ANNOUNCES NICOLAS ROCHE AS TEST PILOT
By Press Release
11 Apr 2022,

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FIFTYONE BIKES is excited to announce the appointment of recently retired professional rider Nicolas Roche in a new Factory Test Pilot role and to unveil his new custom road bike.

Roche left the sport at the end of 2021 after a 17-year career which included two Grand Tour stage wins, four national titles and four Olympic appearances.

Beyond these results, Nico was a highly respected road captain for several of the biggest teams in cycling and he has a depth of appreciation for the details of the sport that constitutes something much greater than merely ‘experience’.

TEST PILOT
The role is not an honorary one. It’s about putting hard kilometres on prototypes, not coffee stop photos on Instagram. Nico remains incredibly fit and still trains with current pro friends on the same twisty roads around Monaco and the south of France. It will be a tough test for the next generation of FiftyOne bikes.

To get acquainted with the brand, Nico is riding the new Assassin gravel bike and a very special custom road bike. The latter is outlined below and profiled in detail on the FiftyOne website.

FIFTYONE BIKES FOUNDER AND MD, AIDAN DUFF, COMMENTS:
"We’re really happy to have Nico on board. He brings a level of skill, experience, insight, fitness and enthusiasm that’s notable even among ex-professional riders and certainly can’t be found anywhere else. More than that, he’s a fantastic guy, a friend, and a great representative of the sport and Ireland. I know we can accomplish a lot together.”

NICOLAS ROCHE COMMENTS:
"I am super excited to be joining the team at FiftyOne and putting my long experience to good use. I’ve known Aidan a long time already and I can’t wait to get started on the future projects I’ve heard about."

“It means a lot to be working with an Irish brand and to celebrate it in my new custom bike. I really love it and it has finally fulfilled some things I always wished for but never got from a pro bike. It gives me incredible confidence to ride and real pride to look at.”


NICO’S CUSTOM BIKE
“Nico told us that he didn’t want a pure race bike. He wanted more comfort,” says FiftyOne founder, Aidan Duff. “However, it also had to be a really dynamic bike for him to throw around the descents and it had to be efficient, stiff. He loves riding hard as much as ever.”

“Throughout his career, Nico never had a custom bike, even early on when he was riding aluminium frames with bonded carbon back ends. This was our chance to give him something bespoke at last.”

The feedback from Nico’s first rides confirmed that the bike hit the mark: “I’m really happy,” he reported from Monaco. “I’m surprised how fast it feels for a round-tubed frame. Descending with (pro) friends on aero bikes, it’s right there with them. I’m really loving the handling. On the flat, too, it rolls really well. It’s so nice.”

They are comments that might get framed somewhere at FiftyOne HQ. “His delight at the bike has extra meaning even over our other customers,” says Aidan. “After all, no one else is chasing current pros down the Col de la Madone.”

Overview:
• Unique handling geometry with ultra-short trail and longer chainstays
• Same position as he raced with
• Long stays add comfort and stability
• Short trail creates highly reactive and precise steering
• SRAM Red eTap AXS groupset, 50/37, 10-28
• Zipp 303 Firecrest wheels and SL Carbon components
• Vittoria Corsa 28mm clinchers

THE PAINT
Nico and FiftyOne are both very proud to be Irish, but there’s much more to celebrate than a shared heritage. Nico was four times Irish national champion (road 2009, 2016; time trial 2007, 2016), four times an Olympian (2008, 2012, 2016, 2020), and twice a stage winner at the Vuelta a España. These achievements are commemorated in the motifs on the seat-tube and top-tube.

“Nico was keen to get involved in the paint design,” says Aidan. “After a few consecutive years of boring black bikes recently, this was his chance to put his personality into the design.

“We wanted to showcase our shared Irish heritage, but not in cheesy way. What looks like a bright white also has a pearlescent green lacquer over the top. This means there will always be a subtle metallic green hint to the bike whether it’s parked in the Monaco sunshine or blazing down the Col d’Èze.”

When you look more closely, other details emerge, all with a similar degree of thought behind them. For example, the fork legs and rear triangle feature a pattern made up of the Trinity Knot, or Triquetra, symbol which is popular in Celtic culture. While it has been employed in many ways over centuries, in modern times it is often used to represent the triplicity of past, present and future. As Nico closes the book on his pro career and begins an exciting new chapter, it couldn’t be more appropriate.



About FiftyOne Bikes
Based in Dublin, Ireland, FiftyOne Bikes is a manufacturer of hand-built custom road bikes and factory-built gravel bikes. Every bike is made to our exacting standards and designed to the especially textured understanding we have of the needs of each individual rider.

FiftyOne Bikes was founded in 2016 by former international rider Aidan Duff, in response to the disappearance from top-end race bikes of the custom options that he had always enjoyed during his career.

Website: fiftyonebikes.com / Email: aidan@fiftyonebikes.com

[ External Website / link click here ]

Sundry Items
Latest Headlines
2022 European Championship - Irish Reports
European and Para-Cycling Road World Championships Schedule
Neill Delahaye takes up new position as Cycling Ireland Head Coach
The Cycling Show on TG4 - S1 E4
Dan Henchy appointed to new Cycling Ireland coaching role

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