Wheels for courses
I noticed in yesterdays flat stage most riders were using deeper rimmed wheels compared to the mountain stages. Anyone know what most are using for the mountain stages as well as the flatties? I'm guessing the deeper rims are for aerodynamics on the faster flats, and the shallower ones are used for their lighter weight which helps on the climbs? Thanks
Yes, many riders mix and match among about four sets of wheels during the Tour, trying to match the rims and tires to the needs of the stage. Some of these wheels and tires are NOT provided by their "official sponsors", so sometimes a "magic marker" is used to conceal an offending brand name.
I read that one pair of wheels used in the time trials cost around $3,000 a pair. Yikes.
Not all riders are confident using carbon fibre wheels on fast descents. Some riders avoid dishy wheels in areas of cross-winds because they affect stability.