Not unlike the cobbles of Northern France, the gravel races of Lowell 50 and Barry-Roubaix offer a chance to test some alterations and improvisations in tech and gear, with riders on the edge of a road bike or the more stable cyclocross bike.
In his big return to racing, Jason Lowetz has already decided that he will stick to his trusted Focus Izalco Max. The bike weighs in at just 15 pounds, and with 5,000 feet of climbing on the course, every ounce tends to add up over the full 62 mile route. At 5'9", Lowetz rides a 54 frame with a 100mm stem paired with a gentleman's spacer or two for comfort on the rougher roads.
He'll stick with a 52-36 Shimano Dura Ace 9000 crankset. Lowetz loves his Di2, which will bounce over the stock 11-28 cassette. Much of the set-up is stock, but on the Tour de France-quailty bike, that's nothing to sniff at. Fizik Cyrano stem and bar, a Prologo saddle and ZIPP SPEED SL seatpost complete the cockpit.
The wheels are even stock, but they are absolute beauties. DT Swiss RC38s are tubeless ready, slightly deeper rims that will be mounted with Challege Eroica Gravel Clinchers in a 30c. That added width is key for both traction and comfort, but the minimal chevron patter lets it clear the frame and keeps it fast for the bunch gallop Lowetz is hoping to take at the finish. He's using TNR to test out the tires and experiment with a lower psi at speed. While most of the race is on gravel, there are a number of stretches of pavement that serve as either rest or platforms to attack, and to position ahead of the next climb.
We'll take a look at Cody's Barry-Roubaix later this week!
Frame: Izalco Max P2T 10 Carbon
Fork: Izalco Max P2T 10 Carbon T4
Brakes: Shimano Dura Ace
Cassette: Shimano Dura Ace
Rear derailleur: Shimano Dura Ace Di2
Shifter: Shimano Dura Ace Di2
Crankset: Shimano Dura Ace
Gear ratiofront: 52/36 rear: 11/28
Handlebar: fi'zi:k Cyrano R3
Stem fi'zi:k: Cyrano R3
Saddle: Prologo C One
Seatpost: ZIPP SL Speed
Wheelset: DT Swiss RC38 Carbon C tubeless ready
Front derailleur: Shimano Dura Ace Di2