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Faster than the strongest wind
Boardman Bicycles, the namesake of Olympic champion and world hour record holder, Chris Boardman, was established in 2004. In the short span of 9 years its sponsored athletes have received numerous accolades, including a Triathlon Championship in the '12 games by Alistair Brownlee and a bronze by his brother Jonathan. As WTC triathlon does not allow time trial bikes, rather than riding the AiR TT 9.8, both were won on the world-class AiR 9.8 bike.
It's no surprise that every tube on the Elite 9.8 AiR was meticulously examined and tested to be the most efficient possible. Because actual race conditions rarely mimic the clean wind of an air tunnel, Boardman carefully designed the AiR 9.8's tubes with shapes that not only efficiently handle head-on winds, but also those less-than-ideal crosswinds that are encountered in racing situations. These wind-tunnel-tested tubes feature a fairly slender width profile throughout, which creates the optimal balance between vertical compliance and aerodynamics. The top tube remains fairly round, while the down tube, seat tube, and integrated seatpost have been shaped to maximize airflow and reduce wind-resistance. The material selected for the AiR 9.8's frame is a high-modulus, unidirectional carbon fiber, constructed with a full monocoque design. Similarly, the fork was built out of the same predictable, race-tested, and ultralight carbon fiber.
The Elite 9.8 AiR's fork was designed to be exceptionally stable, comfortable, and to efficiently handle variable wind conditions. Boardman factored in that both the proximity and spinning of the front wheel also affect the fork's ability to reduce wind-resistance. Its blades were computer modeled to manage that challenging local flow condition. Because of this, Boardman flattened the insides of the blades and curved the outside surfaces for an enhanced airflow interaction between the fork and wheel. This same principle is also true for the seatstays, which is why they feature a similar profile. The frame was built with full internal cable routing, furthering airflow enhancement and a clean overall appearance.
The Elite 9.8's AiR mold incorporates a one-piece, PF30 bottom bracket and oversized box section chainstays, which, with a steep taper design at the dropouts, maximize power transfer and strength at the rear junction. Along these lines, the full carbon fork was built with a 1-1/2 to 1-1/8in tapered steerer for increased stiffness and steering precision.
Given all the attention to details of the frame design, it's no surprise that the AiR 9.8 has been outfitted with an equally impressive component package. To start, the entire drivetrain is SRAM Red 22. This eleven-speed gruppo is the cream of the crop of mechanical road systems. The AiR 9.8 rolls on a Zipp Carbon 60 wheelset with Continental GP4000 tires. The seatpost is a proprietary Boardman AiR Carbon with 4 position clamp and a Fi'zi:k Arione Titanium Saddle rests upon it. To finish the cockpit, the AiR 9.8 features a Zipp Service Course Handlebar and stem.
The listed weight of the complete bike is 15.65lbs. It is available in 5 sizes from X-Small to X-Large and in the color Carbon.