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Five Eurobike gold winning products for your next tour

Alia Parker's picture
Brooks Cambium C17 saddle, gold winner at Eurobike 2013. Cycle Traveller

The Gold Award winners from Eurobike 2013 have been announced and among them are five products for touring cyclists to keep on their radar.

This year's competition attracted 496 entries, of which 10 were awarded gold for outstanding achievement in design and innovation.

"The number of products entered certainly did make the decision difficult,” said judge Christoph Listmann of Bike Magazine.

This year's gold winners were characterised by small improvements in design and efficiency, with no remarkable blow-you-away unveilings, as suggested by judge Peter Barzel from the editorial board of velopress.

“Needless to say, it is difficult to present completely new products or developments every year,” he said. "I think that the mobility-oriented solutions were underrepresented. Many of the entries focused more on sports. However, the products and the technology were on a very high level.”

Five of the awarded products bear some relevance to cycle touring, including  the Cambium C17 saddle by Brooks, the Conti Bicycle Drive Belt System, Adizero SS Jersey by Adidas, the Ortlieb Back-Roller High Visibility Bicycle Bag and the ABUS In-Vizz Bicycle Helmet.

Brooks Cambium C17 Saddle

Brooks leather saddles have been a favourite of touring cyclists for decades, but leather isn't the most weatherproof material. The Cambium saddle is made of vulcanized natural rubber and organic cotton canvas with a thin layer of structured textile. It is waterproof, made with replaceable parts, maintenance-free, comfortable and made to last.

"As a traditional manufacturer, Brooks is blazing new trails with this saddle – and still remains true to its design,” the judges said. “The use of new materials is unique to date – there is no other manufacturer who does anything similar.”

Brooks says the saddle is designed to follow the rider's movements, working like a hammock to make it immediately comfortable while absorbing vibrations and shocks. The Cambium C17 is also available in a C17s model, which is a little shorter and specifically designed for women.

Conti Bicycle Drive Belt System

Conti Belt Drive System, gold winner at Eurobike 2013. Cycle Traveller

This new drive belt system, made by the group that brings you Continental Tyres, is lightweight, smooth and quiet, durable and maintenance-free. Drive belts have been around for some time, but this one comes with a change to the belt's tooth profile. The optimised large-tooth profile permits easier gear-changing at very low tension, a smoother ride, high efficiency and importantly, dry, oil-free operation.

"In this case, the advantages of the belt drive were used in the advanced development and the previous disadvantages eliminated: the change in the tooth shape and the division of the teeth makes it possible to work with a lower belt tension,” the judges said. “The belt runs easily, but still doesn’t come off. This will set the stage for more bikes to use a belt drive. Very well done!”

Belts are an attractive alternative to the common chain, but they have been slow to take off in Australia. They are most commonly used on single speed bikes and bikes with hub gears because they don't work with the conventional deraillure system. Belts have been increasing in popularity in Europe, where low-maintenance hub gears are also more popular. As this technology continues to improve and become cheaper, it will no doubt take off in Australia.

Ortlieb Back-Roller High Visibility pannier bag, gold winner at Eurobike 2013. Cycle Traveller

Ortlieb Back-Roller High Visibility Bicycle Bag

The Ortlieb Back-Roller is already a favourite of cycle tourists, and now it's safer due to interwoven high-visibility yarn. This means that the whole bag reflects, not just a reflective strip. It's a very practical safety innovation that doesn't compromise anything we already love about this durable, waterproof pannier.

"This excellently worked bicycle bag is convincing particularly because of the use of reflecting thread,” the judges said. “It increases the rider’s safety significantly – in the dark, the whole bag becomes one big reflector, which means that cyclists can be seen much more easily and quickly at dusk. All in all, a product that sets new standards.”

The High Visibility pannier retains the design of the standard Back-Roller, including the waterproof PU-coated Cordura fabric, roll closing top, adjustable quick-lock mounting system and tool-free adjustment.

adidas adizero Cycling Jersey

This is one for those who like to keep their gear as light as possible while also enjoying the comfort of a sweat-wicking, performance-fit product. The adizero cycling jersey weighs just 65 grams and provides cyclists with protection against the wind and sun without compromising breathability.

adidas adizero cycling jersey, gold winner at Eurobike 2013. Cycle Traveller

"This shirt stands as a representative for the wave of innovation in jerseys,” the judges said. “When temperatures are high, this jersey is ideal to wear for road racing and mountain biking and is sure to become popular among hobby cyclists in the future as well.”

The jersey is designed to discharge excess moisture from the back and also contains two well-positioned back pockets with a well sized storage space that won't stretch out of shape.

ABUS In-Vizz Bicycle Helmet

This ABUS helmet allows the wearer to easily raise, lower and adjust the front visor – quickly and easily. It's is one of those 'innovations' that you makes you ask why didn't anyone do this earlier, especially given the number of customers that ask for adjustable visors. Having said that, the design is quite clever: the visor retracts into the helmet.

ABUS In-Vizz cycling helmet with visor, gold winner at Eurobike 2013. Cycle Traveller"The visor in the ABUS In-Vizz bicycle helmet is easy to operate with just one hand,” the judges said. “That makes life a lot easier for the cyclist. The function of the helmet is not compromised in any way. It’s amazing that something so easy hasn’t been put on the market before!”

The visor offers riders good protection from the sun, wind, rain and dirt.

Each year since 1991, Baden-Wuerttemberg, Germany has played host to Eurobike, the world's biggest bicycle trade show, where bicycle and cycling product companies gather to reveal the latest developments and set the trends for the coming year. Last year alone, 43,700 trade visitors from 97 countries attended; there were 1,250 exhibitors and 366 new products were launched on the world stage. This year's event runs from August 28-31.

Eurobike Gold Award Winners

The full list of the 10 Gold Award winners is as follows:

1. RIP 9 RDO – Full-suspension mountain Bike by Niner Bikes
2. Factor Vis Vires – Racing bike by Factor Bikes
3. COBOC eCycle – Urban single-speed pedelec electric bike by COBOC
4. blueLABEL Charger – Urban electric bike by riese und müller GmbH
5. adizero ss jersey – Cycling jersey by adidas
6. Cervélo Rca – Racing bike frame set by Cervelo Europe
7. Cambium C17 – Saddle by Brooks
8. Conti drive system – Bicycle drive belt by Benchmark Drives GmbH
9. Back-Roller High Visibility – Bicycle pannier by Ortlieb
10. ABUS In-Vizz – Bicycle helmet by ABUS

Images from top: 1. Brooks Cambium C17 saddle. 2. Conti belt drive system. 3. Ortlieb Back-Roller High Visibility pannier. 4. adidas adizero cycling jersey. 5. ABUS In-Vizz bike helmet.

 

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