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Team Tom's
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Discussion Starter · #1 ·
I've looked but have not seen any...

Why is that, can they just not compete with the qualities of carbon???
 

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It could be many things ....

The ability to furnish a pro team with road bikes and TT bikes can be a cost burden on a company like Litespeed (which is not owned by ... ABG? Is that the acronym?)
 

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corning my own beef
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There have been a few "stealth" (re-badged) Litespeeds ridden by a few guys in the past, but I'm not aware of any now. I could be wrong.

Yeah, bike sponsorship of a ProTour team is mondo expensive. With at least two (or three?) road bike models, TT bikes, etc...

I don't know of any Ti bike manufacturer who has a big enough chunk of the market share to be able to take on sponsorship.
 

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Team Tom's
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Discussion Starter · #4 ·
Ahh, didn't realize that... I was just curious because they seem like a popular bike and I seem numerous out here where I ride.

Anyone know how much the Archon weighs?

Oh and I just found the Litespeed forum here... So I'll research them there... Thanks!
 

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Lightspeed sponsored the lotto team in 2002.

It's hard to tell if the reason that they don't sponsor a team now is financial or that carbon is so much better.... but given that all the frames in the TdF are carbon now, it could well be the latter.
 

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corning my own beef
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ericm979 said:
Lightspeed sponsored the lotto team in 2002.

It's hard to tell if the reason that they don't sponsor a team now is financial or that carbon is so much better.... but given that all the frames in the TdF are carbon now, it could well be the latter.
One major (?) factor: I think the (ride characteristics:weight) ratio is probably superior for carbon. That's coming from a guy who rides Ti. But I think the carbon frames allow them such a low overall weight that the teams get to ADD equipment like SRM power meters, etc. and still be right at the UCI weight limit.
 

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Come on, there are million of dollars at stake. In rides like tdf, they ride the bikes that they are paid to ride. Small companies cant compete with that sort of price. On the other hand, if they had a choice they would be riding carbon.
 

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Carbon Fiber = Explode!
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Remember, the Pros are racing since it's their job. You can't complain about sponsors at all.

Most should be happy they're allowed to pick their pedals.
 

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Steaming piles of opinion
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MaddSkillz said:
I've looked but have not seen any...

Why is that, can they just not compete with the qualities of carbon???
No. Given UCI weight limits, a Ti bike is fully competitive with carbon. Remember that professional sports are studies in marketing, and the larger manufacturers have the coin to sponsor teams, which is a sizeable expense beyond supplying all the bikes.

Litespeed does sponsor at lower levels - or at least they have recently. Financial conditions being what they are, my info may be out of date.
 

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Satanic Watch Winder
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Kestrel finally made it after 23 years.
 

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Carbon Fiber = Explode!
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oily666 said:
Kestrel finally made it after 23 years.
Yeah, good thing they got bought out by the BIG BOYS.
 

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As said, they have sponsored teams in the past, I think most recently Team DFL in 2006 or so all road the Siena (which I can vouch is a great bike). Not sure where Litespeed has gone the last couple years? Prior to that, I know Lance once used Litespeed for TT in the TDF and McEwan used to ride a LS. Haven't seen any pros recently on a LS though. I don't believe it is a weight issue either, my Siena with carbon clinchers, ultegra brakes (heavy!), computer and DA pedals weighs in at 15.6 pounds. Throw some tubulars and lighter brakes on my bike and it is sub 15 (below uci limit). I'd guess the issue to be money, and the fact carbon bikes have really advanced in recent years.
 

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As stated above, Litespeed did sponsor a team in 2002.
Lemond also sponsored the Saturn team, with Chris Horner BTW, on Ti bikes in 2002 and 2003 (2003 the bikes were ti and carbon).
The money can't be that big an issue. Parlee is now supporting a continental team and Parlee is a tiny company.

I think it's just a hard sell for the team management to sign enough riders with a bike that might be heavier and/or less stiff. It could be done, but they would have to shell out some serious cash to turn the riders into believers. They don't need the press that bad.
 

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Jimbolaya said:
The money can't be that big an issue. Parlee is now supporting a continental team and Parlee is a tiny company.

I think it's just a hard sell for the team management to sign enough riders with a bike that might be heavier and/or less stiff. It could be done, but they would have to shell out some serious cash to turn the riders into believers. They don't need the press that bad.
Different levels of competition have drastically different levels of sponsorship costs. And by looking at rider movements over the years, it seems obvious that sponsored bikes are way down the list of things worried about. Pretending that one high-level bike is meaningfully different from another in absolute performance is the stuff of marketing and lousy magazines.
 

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Also of note... Robbie McEwen won the 2002 TDF Green Jersey competition while riding for Lotto; he rode an Ultimate on sprint stages. Most of the rest of the team rode Vortexes (Vortices?). I understand that feedback from Lotto after a season of racing led to a significant redesign of the Vortex.

More recently (2006), Sean Kelly Racing raced on Merlins.
 

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Team Tom's
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Discussion Starter · #16 ·
Well, its apparent that Ti frames can compete both in the weight and in competition... So it's gotta be cost or something else like a lack of interest in the part of the manufacturer... Hmmm
 

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Possibly bike companies make more money on a carbon bike than they do on a Ti bike? If this is the case, then they would want their team riding carbon bikes as an incentive for the public to buy carbon.
 

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Carbon bikes are not better than titanium. They are just MARKETED BETTER. The ability of an artist to change tube shapes annually and then have somebody dream up ad copy to justify the change to promote sales is the greatest advantage of carbon. Most of the carbon tubes today looked like they should be flowing inside a lava lamp. This is not so easily done with titanium.
 

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monkey with flamethrower
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Titanium bicycles are significantly more expensive to produce than a carbon bicycle. For a small company like Litespeed furnishing a large pro-caliber team is a massive financial investment. They had the funds at one point, they probably don't now mostly due to the fact that Ti isn't the 'in' material right now.
 

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Mid 1990s ...several of the "Eddy Merckx" and "Caloi" labeled bikes that Motorola rode were Litespeeds (including the Blade that lance rode in '99 and also in '96)
 
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