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Greg LeMond is many things: pioneering Tour de France champion, sports commentator and, most certainly, a passionate bicycle manufacturer. From his first self-produced bikes in the late-1980s, to his long-running partnership with Trek, to his most recent collaboration with Time, LeMond has continually promoted top-end performance bikes that emphasize stability and comfort.
James Startt/Yuzuru Sunada
“You have to remember that the pros today ride what sponsors give them. But if you talk to them, most want more of a gran fondo bike because they have a better geometry,” LeMond says. Entering into conversation about bikes with LeMond will never be short-winded, because even today, more than 20 years after he retired from racing, LeMond is constantly analyzing the bike and its relationship with the rider. And although he rarely rides for more than two hours at a time, when he is riding, it is through the eyes of an experienced pro.
His current collaboration with Time is clearly a starting point and one he plans to expand upon. For the moment, LeMond boasts an elegant steel frame, the Washoe, as well as three limited-edition carbon models: the 1986 TDF Ltd, the 1989 TDF Ltd and the 1990 TDF Ltd. Promoting LeMond Geometry, the bikes have a slightly relaxed seat angle, a longer top tube, a slightly relaxed head tube and a slightly longer wheelbase.
“Stability is key,” LeMond says. “In recent years, we’ve moved to shorter and shorter wheelbases and there is no foundation for it. There is no reason to have such a short seat stay in the back, unless you’re a sprinter on the track, starting from a standstill. But a road racer needs longer stays because it descends better, it handles better and it’s more comfortable. I’ve descended on different wheelbases. I know. If your wheel is right underneath you when you are descending, you just don’t have the grip, tracking and stability in the corners.” LeMond insists, “My geometries are not radical.” Instead, he prefers to call them “sensible.”