Team Sky defends using Vortex dimple speed suits in Tour de France TT

Posted on: July 2nd, 2017

Vortex dimple Team Sky Tour de France

Geraint Thomas and other three Team Sky men in the Tour de France TT top 10 all used the vortex dimpled fabric in their speed suits.


Team Sky Vortex dimple speed suits at Tour de France TT


Team has defended using Vortex dimple speed suits in the Tour de France stage 1 TT in Dusseldorf yesterday.

The British World Tour outfit took the yellow jersey with stage winner Geraint Thomas.

Four of its nine-rider roster were in the top 10 yesterday making it an incredible opening stage.

Vasil Kiryienka was 3rd in the 14km tests, surviving a slip on the wet roads to finished just 7 seconds behind Thomas.

Christopher Froome was 6th at 12 seconds and Michal Kwiatkowski was 8th at 15 seconds.

The only other team to have more than one rider in the top 10 was QuickStep Flooring; Matteo Trentin in 5th and Marcel Kittle in 9th.

Somewhat inevitably given the controversy surrounding the team for the last year, and the sheer scale of its success down the years, the team performance has been questioned.

But this time it’s the usual suspects of doping or hidden motors in the news, its clothing.

Specifically, Team Sky’s use of Vortex dimples in the speed suits they wore in the Dusseldorf tests.

The riders used the Castelli Body Paint 4.0 Speed Suits. And Castelli produces other jerseys available to buy with the Vortex dimples included.

Frederic Grappe, a sports performance professor working with rival WorldTour team FDJ, has questioned Team Sky using the speed suits

He said each of the riders would have gained between 18 and 25 seconds using the tiny Vortex dimples all over the fabric of their jerseys because it is so aerodynamic.

Grappe also questioned if the use of the aero Vortex dimples in the clothing was permitted under UCI.

However, Team Sky has said because the Vortex dimples are a feature in the material, rather than added to the jersey, they were permitted.

Team Sky sport director Nicolas Portal dismissed the issue in an interview with the Agence France-Presse (AFP) news agency.

“Everything is legal and the equipment was validated by the race commission,” he said.

“We wouldn’t have taken the risk of losing the Tour from the first stage by cheating, we haven’t cheated.

“Other teams use this material but we’re the ones being attacked.

“We’re not infringing the rules because the Vortex isn’t added to the jersey; it’s part of it, that’s different.”