Boonen’s Two-Stage-Winning Eddy Merckx Bike

The two best-known stars of Belgian cycling have come together at Quick Step this year. Eddy Merckx bicycles returned to the top echelon of cycling again with the sponsorship of the Belgian ProTour team of Belgian national champion Tom Boonen.


For 2010, Quick Step switched from Specialized to Eddy Merckx bikes. Boonen rides the EMX-5. This year Eddy Merckx, the man, will be 65, and Eddy Merckx the bicycle brand will be 30 years old. At the Tour of Qatar, Eddy Merckx, the man, often rode the mornings before the stages.


Boonen’s frameset is custom in its geometry, but similar in construction to the stock EMX-5 with 46HM 3K carbon fiber. “It only took one month,” Boonen said of the custom process.


Deda Zero100 bars and stem, in aluminum, of course. Saddle maker Prologo also provides the team with handlebar tape.


Quick Step rides wheels from Fast Forward, a Dutch company. These F5C wheels are built with DT Swiss 240s hubs, DT Aerolite spokes and DT brass nipples.


Fast Forward like most wheel companies has a full range of rim depths. The F5C comes in a 50mm height. The set weighs 1,450 grams.


Boonen is on Look’s new Keo Blade, which uses a carbon leaf spring instead of a standard metal coil spring to keep the cleat clipped in. These ti spindle models weigh 195 grams for the set. Tension isn’t adjustable per se, but you can switch out the carbon leaf to increase or decrease tension.


After years of loyally riding the Selle San Marco Regal, Boonen is on Prologo this year. However, he chose a wider model (145mm) than the rest of his teammates, who ride the standard Prologo Scratch Pro in a 134mm width. “I have wider hips so I need a wider saddle,” he said. “After 10 years of racing I know the position I like, and I’m not going to change.”


BBB provides helmets, sunglasses and basic computers, such as this BCP-32W. While many riders now race with power meters, Boonen says he prefers to race on instinct and feel. “You can have this computer,” he said. The top speed recorded on it in Qatar was 72.8kph.


Boonen chats about his Look Keo Blade pedals with Team Sky’s Scott Sunderland and Steven De Jongh.

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