Tom Boonen is having quite the year, winning the overall at the Tour of Qatar, E3 Harelbeke, Gent-Wevelgem, Tour of Flanders, and his 4th victory at Paris-Roubaix. Making him the first ever cyclist to ever win the Flemish cobblestone quadruple. After an incredible spring classics campaign, Boonen is returning to racing at this week's Amgen Tour of California.
Boonen has won this year on three different Specialized bikes, the Roubaix, Tarmac, and Venge. For the Tour of California, Tom has brought both a Tarmac SL4 and McLaren Venge for normal road duties, with a Specialized Shiv for the TT in Bakersfield.
"Tom is pretty much going to ride most the stages this week on the Venge as his chosen bike," said Sean Estes, Specialized's public relations manager, "Given Tom's body style and the type of riding being featured at the Tour of California, it's the perfect bike. Highly aerodynamic, highly stiff, it's perfect for the sprints."
Boonen's bike is equipped with mostly new 2012 SRAM RED, he has chosen to run an older SRAM TT chainring on the crank to make the minimum UCI weight limit and for it's added stiffness. Speaking of stiffness, a special collaboration between McLaren and Specialized has resulted in a special layup schedule that results in the McLaren Venge frameset being both stiffer and lighter by 150 grams than a normal Venge. Boonen will ride Zipp 404's for most stages, but has the full range of ZIpp wheels to choose from. The only part on his bike that isn't off the shelf is a one off Zipp stem, in a 140mm size, a size they don't normally offer.
Sean Estes of Specialized shows us Tom Boonen's race bike...
[youtube width="600" height="361"]httpv://www.youtube.com/watch?v=5mPC3vIfL38
Tom Boonen's McLaren Venge and Specialized SL4 Tarmac Photo Gallery below-