Events Pro Gear: Wildflower Pro Transition Area Aaron HershMay 3, 2014 A look at the gear the pros rode at Saturday's Wildflower Long Course Triathlon. Pro Gear: WildflowerJesse Thomas has been riding Rolf Prima wheels since the very beginning of his pro triathlon career. His rear is an Ares rim with a plastic disc cover over a PowerTap power meter hub. Disc covers have been shown to be similar in aerodynamic performance to the more expensive solid foam core versions. They’re much, much more affordable.Thomas uses a storage container designed by Specialized specifically to fill the gap at the bottom of the frame triangle. Behind his saddle, Thomas has a canister of Vittoria Pitstop taped to a rear-facing cage in case of a flat. The cage itself is zip tied to his saddle.The first guy off the bike at Wildflower was Andrerw Starykowicz. Unfortunately he was foiled by a loose seatpost collar and didn’t earn his typical commanding lead. Starykowicz put a strip of tape over the opening on the top of his Lazer Tardiz helmet.Starkykowicz uses the TriRig Omega front brake, which fits almost completely in front of the head tube. Starykowicz is one of the few professionals to race the Vision Metron drivetrain. He has found it to be very durable, and these oversized derailleur pulleys are designed to reduce bearing friction slightly by allowing the pulleys to turn more slowly. The big American’s Vision shifters.Starykowicz races with Torhans hydration accessories, including the VR Bottle on his downtube.James Hadley rode this 70mm Enve SES rim, converted into a disc using a plastic cover. Like Thomas’ setup, this cover can greatly reduce aero drag at a fraction the cost of buying a dedicated disc.It’s the year 2014, and some athletes still opt to press their nutrition against their top tube.Caroline Gregory used a Speedfil Z4 cage as her front hydration system. This cage was zip tied to the aerobar extensions through the pre-cut slots. She mounted a Garmin 500 computer to the top of the bottle in plain view.With a bottle between his elbows and nutrition taped to his extensions, Thomas’ bars are set to position his forearms in front of his face. He tucks his head behind whenever possible, a position he’s tested in the wind tunnel.Heather Jackson is racing the same Cannondale Slice frameset that has carrier her to two earlier Wildflower championships.One modification to Jackson’s Slice is her derailleur pulleys. These neon green wheels do more than match her color scheme–they have been shown by third party testing to turn with little friction.Trish Deim raced this custom painted Trek Speed Concept built with Shimano Ultegra 11-speed and Zipp 808/Super-9 wheels to 14th pace. Deim overlooked no detail in her color scheme. She used a X-Lab Torpedo System BTA bottle for her front hydration system.Matt Lieto’s Speed Concept 9 Series built with Campagnolo EPS components. The only helmet bold enough to match Matt Lieto’s personality. Lieto postions a water bottle, gels and a Five Hour Energy tube on his aerobars. He had two bottles mounted to his extensions at Ironman 70.3 Oceanside in March, but returned to a more typical setup for this race. Suspending a cycling shoe with a rubber band makes for an easier flying mount. Beaker Concepts rear hydration system allows enough space for a flat repair kit. Seeing a Blue on the pro transition rack is a rare sight these days. The company went out of business briefly, but is back in operation for 2014. Matthew Russell mounted an aero bottle to the bosses on the top tube of his Trek Speed Concept. Although manufacturers don’t advertise it, most bikes with bosses in this location can carry a bottle on the top tube.Sue Huse took full advantage of the space on her top tube to haul extras–nutrition and flat repair. Many of the pros including Stephen Kilshaw opted for a semi-aero helmet such as this Specialized Evade on this abnormally hot day in central California. Elizabeth Noey’s Mavic Cosmic Carbone Ultimates.Kathy Rakel’s BH Aerolight with Hed Jet 6/9 wheels.The Slice RS, Cannondale’s newest aero bike, hasn’t exactly exploded in popularity in triathlon, but it still appears in the pro racks. Karl Bordine raced Nathan’s new fbar-mounted hydration system. Nicholas Chase stuck an array of salt tablets to a fold of duct tape on his aerobar extensions. A running watch face may not be the most elegant bike computer, but it can serve some of the functions.Javelin has faded from the scene, but Justin Daerr proved it’s still competitive by riding this Lugano to 5th place. Extremely expensive and incredibly comfortable, this Dash saddle was on Andrew Drobeck’s bike with an X-Lab rear hydration system, maybe the Mini Wing, mounted on the back. The Pro Textreme Carbon Disc uses a special kind of ultra-expensive carbon that is stiffer and more brittle than most. This wheel weighs in at 975 grams, very low for a disc.Why change a tube or tire when you can do the job with a flat-seal canister? Vittoria Pitstop is a must-have for everyone who rides tubulars.Ian Mikelson raced a Mavic Comete disc with a Continental GP 4000 tubular tire. Dustin McLarty raced a Felt IA, the brand new tri bike from the California-base bike maker. While he typically starts the ride in first, the 2-mile run to the bikes cost the super swimmer his typical advantage.Scott Defilippis has his Cervélo P5 assembled with a significant spacer stack.