What Brands are at the 2022 Tour de France?
12 July 2022
By Dan Duguid
The most prestigious of the Grand Tours, Le Tour de France, is here and Saddleback’s brands are again well represented in the Pro Peloton, including Sportful, Abbey Bike Tools, Castelli, Sidi, HJC and Silca.
Taking place over 3,328km and racing through four countries, Le Tour will be spread over 21 days in July, with the action kicking off in Copenhagen. Le Tour is famed for its mountainous stages and the time trials that test GC riders’ all-round abilities.
When both of these are combined with the rolling stages, such as Stage 6 from Binche to Longwy at 219.9km, Le Tour will push the riders and teams to their limits. Culminating in Paris and finishing along the spectacular Champs-Élysées, the race has already offered its share of surprises and aggressive racing that are set to make this year’s Tour one not to miss.
As with previous editions of the race, several of our brands are in evidence in the peloton, taking care of the world’s best athletes racing at the highest level.
Abbey Bike Tools
Hidden in many team tool boxes, Abbey Bike Tools are the secret weapon of the mechanics on this year’s race, as they have been in previous years. The Crombie Tool was born directly from the demands of pro mechanics, and tools such as the HAG (Hanger Alignment Gauge) and Decade Chain Tool are all in use.
This year’s event has also seen a prototype being tested in the wild, the preHAG, designed to quickly check whether the derailleur hanger alignment is perfect before the HAG is called into service.
This is Castelli’s first Tour de France with Quick-Step Alpha Vinyl, having signed a three-year contract with the team last year. This bold move to “The Wolfpack” has paid off already in this year’s race, with Yves Lampaert taking a surprise win in a wet opening time trial and Fabio Jakobsen backing up that first win in a chaotic sprint finish on Stage 2, while wearing the newly released BTW Suit.
Castelli’s prestigious history is littered with firsts in the pro peloton, with the brand having produced the first aero kit, the first road aero suit, and caused a sensation with the iconic Gabba.
A relative newcomer to the peloton, HJC is being worn in this year’s Tour by Team Israel Premier Tech and the AG2R Citroen Team. Expect to see the Ibex 2.0 worn for the hillier stages, with the Furion 2.0 being the helmet of choice on the flatter stages that demand aero advantages.
The Furion 2.0 was used this year by Simon Clarke, as part of a small breakaway group of four riders, to take a narrow win on Stage 5. In what can only be described as the Tour de France meets the Hell of the North, the route took in 11 sectors of cobbles from the Paris Roubaix course in a stage that will surely stand out as one of the most technically demanding of the race.
Having a lofty history in cycling, it’s no surprise to see Sidi’s shoes adorning the feet of some of the world’s best riders. This year the Italian manufacturer’s shoes are adorning the feet of individual riders including Ineos Grenadiers’ Daniel Martinez, Luke Rowe and Adam Yates, not to mention Rigoberto Uran and Chris Froome.
Silca has made a name for itself based on marginal gains, with its owner, Josh Poertner, having helped riders like Fabian Cancellara win huge monuments such as Paris-Roubaix.
The brand’s understanding of what it takes to win the world’s biggest marques has not gone unnoticed by the pro riders, nor has its years of experience and reputation for building the most accurate pumps in cycling. EF Pro Cycling and Israel Premier Tech both use Silca’s pumps and the TRUTH Pressure Gauge to inflate their tyres.
Keep an eye out, too, for the brand’s 3D printed titanium products appearing on both teams’ bikes.
Worn this year by Team TotalEnergies, the innovative Italian brand has won its fair share of Grand Tour stages in the past. This year it’s already come close to adding another win to this tally, with Edvald Boasson-Hagen attacking at the finale of the cobbled Stage 5, only to be caught in the final 500m after attacking the four-man break.
In the hunt for wins, Peter Sagan has been a regular Top 10 finisher on the sprint stages and his strong desire to take a stage win may just pay off later in the race.