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Because Specialized designed its latest release specifically for Kona conditions, there was no other place they’d consider unveiling their new S-Works Shiv Disc. The bike was presented with great fanfare at a pre-party for the Ironman World Championship, where pros like Lucy Charles, Javier Gomez, Braden Currie, Tim Don, Sarah True, and Ben Hoffman sang its praises. Charles, Gomez, Currie, Don, and True, who have been training on the bike for the past seven weeks, will race with the Shiv Disc this weekend; mere mortals will have to wait until April to get their own. What to know about the $14,000 bike Specialized is calling “Kona-Optimized”:
It’s made for Kona crosswinds.
Compared to Specialized’s fastest 2011 Shiv setup, the Shiv Disc is nearly a minute faster over the Kona course. The traditional Shiv reduced drag from front to back using design elements like slammed bars, hidden cable routing; the Shiv Disc takes it one step further by optimizing the nose cone, fork, and seat tube for crosswinds. “In a sidewind, it feels like the bike slices through like a disc wheel,” says Hoffman.
Hidden compartments abound.
Triathletes won’t have to sacrifice nutrition for aerodynamics, thanks to a sleek “fuel cell” design that stores hydration in the seat tube. The hydration fuel cell holds up to 50 ounces of fluid, which is transported to the athlete through a hose that integrates into the cockpit. A nutrition fuel cell is built into the down tube and can hold up to 12 gels.
Anyone who has wrestled with a bike box will appreciate the Shiv Disc’s “pack mode.” Instead of removing the cockpit entirely, the bike folds down by loosening only five bolts: two at the base bar, two at the tower, and one at the seatpost. After landing, the bike quickly reassembles to race-ready position by tightening those same five bolts. The bike comes with a custom travel case as well.
Specialized worked with Retül Fit to compile thousands of datasets from riders around the world, identifying patterns in sizing to create the measurements for the four available Shiv sizes. For an even more personalized experience, a super-adjustable front end allows for tweaks to stack and reach without compromising fit or control.
It’s Zwift-ready, too.
As of today, Zwift riders can mount a (virtual) Shiv Disc. To get the bike IRL, however, they’ll need to order through Specialized’s website.