The 808 changed perceptions about deep-section wheels. At first, its 82mm-deep profile appeared only in time trials and triathlons. And sure enough, its early incarnations netted numerous Grand Tour stage wins and Ironman world championship at Kona. Still, it didn’t take long before Zipp riders discovered that the 808’s light weight, responsiveness, and solid handing are ideally suited to hilly bike legs, criteriums, field sprints and long days off the front of the peloton.
Now, with the new Firecrest rim shape, the 808 has improved in almost every metric. In fact, the 808 Firecrest is the fastest front wheel we’ve ever tested. Its 27.5mm-wide profile is 15 seconds faster than before over 40km, and now equals or exceeds the performance of any 90mm-deep rim on the market as well as many discs. At high wind angles, the 808’s aero advantage is even greater, yet Firecrest also makes the 808 remarkably stable.
Essentially, the 808 Firecrest provides the speed of a much deeper rim with the handling of a much shallower one. On windy non-disc-legal course like Kona, that counts for a lot. And in Firecrest’s first crack at elite-level competition, Chris “Macca” McCormack rode it to a win on the Big Island in 2010.
With its wider profile, the latest 808 Firecrest Tubular also shows improved lateral stiffness for efficient power transfer and crisp acceleration, yet offers greater comfort and impact resistance than its predecessor.
New for 2014, the 808 Firecrest Tubular is built with a the latest iteration of our 188 rear hub, the V9, along with new spoke-lacing pattern for the rear wheel - refinements that result in improved stiffness and durability. The new hub was developed in cooperation of superstar sprinter Mark Cavendish of the Omega Pharma – Quick-Step Cycling Team and is in use by other top pro cyclists and triathletes including Pete Jacobs and Mirinda Carfrae.
Cavendish received early hub prototypes in January 2013 and logged 13,000 kilometres (8,078 miles) on continually refined variants, including his stage victories at the Giro d’Italia and the 2013 Tour de France. His feedback helped optimize the hub’s flange geometry, stiffness and weight.
The new 188/V9 hub has larger precision Swiss steel bearings for increased durability. Our new “virtual 3 cross” lacing on both sides of rear wheel improves stiffness, achieving 3 cross stiffness in a 2 cross pattern with a new spoke geometry. The 188/V9 has 25 percent more torsional stiffness than a leading competitive hub. This measure of stiffness is crucial for the direct power transfer to the rear wheel for out-of-the saddle sprints and climbs. The new hub also is laterally (side-to-side) stiffer that its rival or predecessor.
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