As you might expect, Ironman World Champion Craig Alexander is somewhere on the forefront of technological advances these days. In fact, given the speed that these things happen, there’s a jolly good chance that this review may already be out of date. However, we thought we’d take a look at Crowie’s Orbea Ordu TDR.
Written By: Jay Prasuhn
Shimano has been making Craig Alexander its top flight guinea pig in creating a groupset that has true physiological benefit, and the Di2 on his Ordu may have helped him take his second Ironman World Championship title. The battery-rechargeable electronic shifting unit has push-button shifters at both the aerobar extension ends and inboard of the brake levers. The benefit is that there are no shift cables to physically pull. “I tested it in all conditions over the past few months,” Alexander said. “You have shifting capability in the aero position as well as near the brake levers. They’re the best advancement in bike technology that I’ve seen.”
Of quieter interest on his Hawaii Ironman-winning machine was the use of prototype Shimano C75 rear and C50 front tubular wheels. Shimano tells us that we’ll see more of these on pros’ bikes this season.
Alexander does his own fit, and confirms it with Retul Fitting, Boulder, Colorado. “In his preparation for a repeat, he went to the Boulder studio to have Mat [Steinmetz] take another recording so he could confirm that his position was the same as the one he used previously,” said Retul’s Todd Carver. “That’s very powerful stuff for an elite athlete and is probably the main reason they like to come to us for fittings—we can actually give them real, objective data that is very useful for them as they transition from year to year, and between bikes and equipment.”