“Everything old is new again.” A lot of the time, people say that with a touch of disdain or incredulity, as if to say that recycling ideas from the past is just a lazy way to try to move into the future. But every once in a while, reviving an old idea pays off. Take, for instance, the new Cadex Tri Frameset. The triathlon-specific bike harkens back to the days of monocoque frames in the 1990s but with a new twist that will leave the competition in the dust.
Beyond just looking good, the new bike comes with a seriously impressive pedigree. According to the brand, Cadex brought in World and Olympic triathlon champion Kristian Blummenfelt to help create the new Tri Frameset, and the result is nothing short of spectacular. Using CFD—computational fluid dynamics—and a liberal amount of wind tunnel testing, they created a bike that Blummenfelt has already used to win the 2021 Ironman World Championship (the race had been delayed to May 7, 2022). Blummenfelt recored the first sub seven-hour Ironman triathlon a month later in June. In addition to the monocoque carbon frame, Cadex has also announced trial and triathlon-specific wheels, which include a full-carbon rear disc wheel and four-spoke carbon wheels.
“Triathletes are constantly looking for ways to improve aerodynamics, pedalling efficiency and of course comfort,” Blummenfelt said. “Over the course of 180km, small changes add up. Sometimes what feels or tests fast in the wind tunnel doesn’t work as well out on the road. Having the ability to make these adjustments quickly and easily is a game – changer when you’re trying to optimize your riding position and fit.”
The bike features a double-crown, wide-leg fork, and is missing the top tube, which makes it a perfect fit for triathlon athletes as it makes getting on and off the bike easier. The down tube of the bike also features an internal bladder for fluids, which is accessed via a straw that runs internally through the frame and comes out between the armrests of the front of the bike. In effect, the rider can get a drink without coming out of the aero position.
There’s also a removable bento box and a toolbox. Cadex also took into consideration that athletes have to travel to compete, and they worked to minimize “the amount of disassembly and reassembly needed.” The frameset has its own dedicated case made in collaboration with Topeak. The case features a mounting system that protects the bike in transit, but can also be removed and used as a “mini work stand.” Cadex took out all the stops on this bike, and it has already been proven to give an edge to the rider. Of course, that edge comes at a cost—though perhaps not as much as you might think. The Cadex Tri Frameset is priced at AUD$8,999, and that encompasses a travelling case, wide-stance fork, aero cockpit, and monocoque frame.