The Tour de France 2021, the world’s most famous cycling event, kicks off on Saturday 26 June, and we can’t wait. Before the winner pedals down the Champs Elysée, we can look forward to many hours of aerial footage of the peloton cycling through the picturesque French countryside, sneak breakaways, arduous mountain climbs and sprint finishes.
If you‘re a keen cyclist, watching the Tour de France may well inspire you to shop for the gear used by the pro peloton. To help you out, here are 5 things the pros will be using that YOU can actually buy – and without having to remortgage your house, too.
One good thing about pro cycling is that although you might not be able to get the top of the range Pinarello road bike, there are plenty of cycling accoutrements you can actually purchase that’s are being used by cream of the crop pros like Julian Alaphilippe, Geraint Thomas and Mathieu van der Poel. These include cycling sunglasses, turbo trainers and bike computers as well as the actual bikes.
Ready to splash out on some cycling gear? Let’s take a look at the Tour de France 2021 gear used by the pros you can actually buy for yourself.
- The bike and gear used by Mark Cavendish
- The bike and gear used by Chris Froome
- Virgin Galactic x Under Armour Capsule Collection: sci-fi sportswear!
Wahoo Elemnt BOLT bike computer
The Wahoo Elemnt Bolt is sitting at the top of T3’s best bike computer guide, no wonder all the pros use this reliable device for their training. Bora Hansgrohe team members in particular prefer Wahoo computers. The new Wahoo Bolt features a 64-colour display, ambient light sensor, watertight body and automatic rerouting, all in a compact yet resilient body.
Supersapiens Energy Management System
The Supersapiens energy management system is an interesting concept that can help you ‘fuel’ almost with minute precision throughout the day. Although it’s been ruled out for use in the Tour de France competition, many teams, including Jumbo-Visma, uses the Abbott Libre Sensor Glucose Sport Biosensor-powered Supersapiens to get their riders ready for the Tour.
Essentially, after applying the semi-permanent biosensors on your skin, it feeds data back into the Supersapiens app where you can see your blood glucose levels real time. This is a game changer in terms of staying on top of your energy needs all throughout the day but especially during racing. The tech doesn’t come cheap though: see the pricing options at Supersapiens (opens in new tab).
Specialized Tarmac SL7
Another T3 No.1, we think the Specialized Tarmac SL7 is the best road bike. It also won a T3 Award recently, which is way more prestigious than a mere yellow jersey. As we said in our Specialized Tarmac SL7 review, “If you’re a rider who likes speed, efficiency and precise handling, the newly redesigned Specialized S-Works Tarmac SL7 offers race-proven performance and aerodynamic design.” Need we say more? The bike is used by QuickStep on TdF 2021.
Wahoo KICKR Smart Trainer
Team INEOS riders mount their bikes on Wahoo KICKR v5 turbo trainers when they aren’t out on the road. The recently updated KICKR v5 offers a more realistic ride and increased precision without spin down. This amazing turbo trainer also features the new AXIS feet that allow a bike installed onto the trainer to smoothly tilt up to 5 degrees from side-to-side with each pedal stroke, creating a more realistic ride feel.
Of the 184 riders that started the race this year, 169 are on Zwift (opens in new tab). Zwift is a virtual platform where riders from all over the world can compete against each other riding their road bikes mounted on a smart turbo trainer. You can collect virtual badges and attend a lot of different events, a fun way to get fit indoor with cycling.
Many of the TdF pros now use indoor training to supplement their outdoor riding – whether it's because they need to do structured intervals or, like us regular folks, just want to escape the bad weather for a bit.
Cavendish is one of the most popular riders on Zwift and current green jersey wearer. The pros also use Zwift during their recovery from injury. Jake Haig was Bahrain Victorious' leader this year before he crashed out and has since been using Zwift to recover from his injuries.
Read what we think is the best Zwift setup for every budget.
Specialized S-Works Evade w/ ANGI
Best cycling helmet, anyone? The Specialized S-Works Evade w/ANGI (opens in new tab) is used by the Bora-Hansgrohe team to protect the noggins of its riders. Not surprisingly, it’s the same team that uses the BOLT computers as the it’s compatible with ANGI, Specialized’s patented helmet-mounted sensor, that measures the forces transmitted to a helmet during a crash. Let no crash happen to you but even if it does, you can rest assured that your head is well protected. And you can enjoy the great aerodynamic properties of the S-Works Evade as long as you’re on the bike.