A few months after its return to the cycling world, Pirelli has signed its first technical collaboration agreement with a professional cycling team, and it does so with Irish Pro Continental team Aqua Blue Sport.
The official event to mark the comeback of Pirelli tyres to professional bike racing will be the forthcoming edition of the Amstel Gold Race, the tough one-day Ardennes classic on Sunday 15 April 2018.
A release from Pirelli notes that ‘innovation and vision are, in fact, two traits that Pirelli has in common with Aqua Blue Sport, the only team at professional road cycling level to use a 1x group-set on their 3T Strada bikes, a choice that has managed to amaze and almost defy the cycling world.’
With the Aqua Blue Sport team Pirelli has entered into an agreement that is meant to serve first and foremost as an opportunity for growth and R&D work on the company’s products. Pirelli adds that its role in sports partnerships, in fact, does not consist solely of providing branded tyres, ‘it entails genuine technical collaboration and an on-going exchange of feedback with the teams, leading to the development of specific and unique tyre solutions.’
For Aqua Blue Sport, Pirelli has developed a new, specific tubular tyre, which the team has been testing in recent months, in various contexts and on-road tests. It is a 28 mm tyre, specially developed to maximise the aerodynamic characteristics of the 3T Strada. When training, the Aqua Blue Sport team riders use the 28 mm PZero Velo tyres already available on the market.
Like the PZero Velo clinchers, the new Pirelli tubulars for Aqua Blue Sport have been developed with the aid of a proprietary technology, and the compounds are produced by Pirelli in its Slatina plant, in Romania, where the tyres for F1 single-seaters are also made.
“Pirelli’s comeback to racing bikes is the natural consequence of the company’s return to the world of cycling,” points out Antonella Lauriola, COO of Velo Pirelli Business Unit; “and we are happy to be back with Aqua Blue Sport as our partner. They are a team with great personality and technical preparation, with whom we share values and vision. We have undertaken a joint R&D program that is highly constructive and, we hope, will lead to new wins for the team and quality improvements for the consumer tyres we are going to launch in the near future.”
“We are proud to forge this new and exciting partnership with Pirelli, a brand that stands for the highest standard of quality in the tyre manufacturing universe,” said Stephen Moore, General Manager at team Aqua Blue Sport.
“As we strive to continue to blaze a path in technical innovation in professional cycling, this new collaboration brings further momentum to our vision and hopefully pave the way to great results on the road.”