Endura and Drag2Zero have launched the new Endura D2Z Aero Collection, which contains advanced aero clothing and a helmet developed by the Scottish cycle wear experts in cooperation with leading aerodynamicist Simon Smart of Drag2Zero at the Mercedes-AMG Petronas F1 wind tunnel in Brackley, Northamptonshire.
Endura‘s relationship with former F1 aerodynamicist is long-established. Their earlier collaborations helped Alex Dowsett to break the World Hour Record in 2015, and Movistar Team to claim numerous victories in professional cycling’s elite UCI WorldTour. Their latest project is a collection includes aerodynamic suits, jerseys, and bibshorts, and an aero helmet.
Smart’s partnership with Endura has rendered impressive results. His work at Mercedes F1, a combination of scientific calculation and engineering intuition, is rendered in fabric some 350 miles away in Livingston, Scotland.
“You have to specialize in the thing that you’re good at,” Smart explains. “Ours is aerodynamics, so it made sense to partner with Endura, who are so far down the road with textiles, having built up an amazing resource in Scotland with their prototyping and manufacturing facility, which seems second to none.”
Rapid prototyping, in a real sense, rather than 3D printing, has underpinned the speed of development. “That seemed to be the big difference with Endura, compared to a lot of brands,” Smart explains. “They are so agile and able to turn around prototypes really quickly. We’ve just been able to chip away at the development process by making garments and testing them on a regular basis.”
The union underpins the step change in the approach to fabrics and aero efficiency. The industry has traditionally focused upon construction, notably the use of trip seams. Endura’s new Drag2Zero aero collection embraces surface textures, including silicone applications.
Endura’s founder and managing director Jim McFarlane describes Endura’s embrace of silicone as “binary.” It’s a step change that perhaps only Endura, with its in-house production facilities in Scotland, and partnerships with the likes of Dowsett and his Movistar Team colleagues, and, of course, with Smart, could realize.
Silicone printing is no easy task, but Endura has people to match its technical resource: experts capable of managing processes like 3D scanning, 3D to 2D rendering, digital printing and ceramic cutting, but equipped with traditional skills like pattern cutting. “It’s that mix between old school craftsmanship – attention to detail, completely understanding what you’re doing – and then being completely open to using the latest tools to do it,” McFarlane explains.
Endura Drag2Zero Aero Methods
While most brands test at one single speed, Endura Drag2Zero looked at the critical variations in aerodynamic efficiency at different speeds and in different riding positions. A suit optimized for a TT rider, averaging 50kph in an aggressive aero positon is not necessarily the fastest suit for a rider on a road bike, chasing a sportive personal best averaging 35kph. Developing the Endura D2Z range around this broader philosophy has resulted in products which are finely tuned to the requirements of the target rider, not only faster than the competition at one selected data point but across a range of speeds.
Endura Drag2Zero have produced over 80 different variations in the quest for the ideal aero suit for Movistar riders to use in WorldTour Time Trials. While improving performance on your last model is critical to gaining seconds, benchmarking against the competition is essential in the pursuit of being the best. Throughout its development the Endura D2Z collection has been scientifically tested against those claiming to be the best on the market.
D2Z Encapsulator Suit
The halo piece of the Endura D2Z collection, the award-winning Encapsulator Suit, represents Endura’s pinnacle of aerodynamic apparel technology for the rider who is obsessed with speed. Endura D2Z’s technology has been proven on the road with multiple UCI WorldTour and UCI Women’s WorldTour podiums for Movistar Team and Cervélo Bigla Pro Cycling Team, and on the track by Dowsett and Bridie O’Donnell in successful attempts on the UCI Hour Records.
Over 80 different suits have been created, tested and remastered to reach the point where Endura are finally content to release it to the wider market. Optimized for speeds over 45kph and in a TT position, the Encapsulator Suit is the go-to piece for any serious time trial rider looking for the fastest suit in the world.
The Endura D2Z Encapsulator Suit uses STT (Silicone Surface Topography) technology. This patent pending technology has been developed by Endura in close collaboration with Smart of Drag2Zero and validated by the world’s top road riders on the UCI WorldTour. SST is the result of years of R&D, studying airflow in wind tunnel in conjunction with the development of new production methods to bring theoretical ideas to real world riding. Strategically positioned 3D chevrons positively affect airflow around the body, reducing drag at the speeds relevant to the target rider.
The suit is equipped with the 1000 SERIES Aero Pad which is specially shaped to suit to the more aggressive riding position. The 1000 series Italian stretch pad features Continuously Variable Profile (CVP) technology and is sculpted from a single block of foam. Unlike traditional layered pads, this avoids clunky steps in pad thickness. TRS perforated foam “dermis” layer positioned under the face for improved blood flow and dryness especially on longer rides. The BioCeramic high stretch, fast wicking face fabric incorporates a permanent antibacterial finish, completing one of the most advanced pads in existence.
Providing a simple solution to the challenge of neatly attaching a race number, the Encapsulator pocket also protects the delicate fabrics from the damage caused by pins. Initially banned, then accepted, by the UCI the Encapsulator pocket has had a short, but controversial life. The super fine, translucent mesh allows race numbers to be clearly visible while retaining the breathability of the pocket area around the number.
Endura’s experience of garment construction and rigorous pursuit of “faster” fabrics comes together in the D2Z apparel collection. The Encapsulator Suit and Roadsuit deploy 5 different fabrics in combination to meet the demands of fit, comfort, durability and aerodynamic efficiency.
For the passionate rider looking to gain extra seconds on the local race circuit, hit ambitious targets on a big Gran Fondo, set new PB’s on every Strava segment or just beat their mates on the club run the Endura D2Z Roadsuit provides the perfect fit. The heavily textured sleeve and flank panels and SST leg prints maximize aerodynamic efficiency through a wide range of speeds while the one piece construction ensures a close, race fit and minimal bulk. Optimized for road racing position and a speed range of 32-50kph, the suit boasts the 1000 Series Aero Pad and three rear pockets with bonded, windproof spoiler cover to retain a smooth, clean profile along the back of the Roadsuit even when the pockets are full, while still allowing easy access.
D2Z Bibshort and Jersey
The Endura D2Z Short Sleeve Jersey and Bibshort provide the same aero advantage as the Roadsuit for the rider looking for the versatility of a 2 piece outfit. A lightweight internal hem elastic with silicone gripper hold the jersey in place while the full front zip allows quick venting when the temperature rises. Shorts feature a high wicking, lightweight mesh bib for comfortable support with SST technology taking care of airflow.
D2Z Aeroswitch Helmet
Developed with the clear goal of being the fastest in the world, testing of the Aeroswitch helmet against its rivals show incredibly positive results. Extensive CFD modelling, wind tunnel prototype testing and a vast knowledge of experience in the field have helped determine a profile which is not only exceptionally aerodynamic in direct airflow but also minimizes the
negative effects experienced as yaw angles increase. The full Koroyd core provides market leading impact absorption. Koroyd’s tubular construction also keeps weight to a minimum and improves cooling over traditional aero helmets.
A deep visor provides eye protection and the magnetic attachment allowing it to be easily flipped up out the way with one hand when not required. The Aeroswitch’s name hints at its hidden feature of a patent pending* detachable aero tail which clips off to create a shorter, more open road aero helmet, ideal for longer rides on the road bike. Large front vents achieve an increased airflow, while the one-hand micro-adjustment fit system lets you adjust the fit easily. Antibacterial fast wicking, spacer fabric padding and the included EVA carry case and helmet bag round off the impressive list of features. Last but not least, the D2Z Aeroswitch Helmet is covered by Endura’s Crash Replacement Policy and certified to CE standard EN1078:2012 + A1:2012 The combination of speed, versatility and safety sets the Aeroswitch apart from the competition.
To learn more head to www.endurasport.com.