Desire: Pinarello’s latest thoroughbred
The Pinarello Dogma has been an icon among premium road bikes since its initial introduction but truly made its mark after its first big win – the 2012 Tour de France under Team Sky’s Sir Bradley Wiggins. As breakthrough moments go, the first Brit to win cycling’s biggest race, onboard your flagship bike, is not a bad endorsement. For the UK market particularly, the Dogma 65.1 Think 2 (catchy name, we know) became THE bike to own. With its instantly-recognisable frame shapes, particularly that flowing fork, the Dogma cut a unique silhouette in the pro peloton at the time and that legacy remains, seven years on.
Hotfoot into 2019 and the Pinarello Dogma is the most successful Tour de France bicycle of the last decade, winning 7 out of the last 10 laps of France under Team Sky, most recently with Team Ineos’ young Colombian talent, Egan Bernal.
Though elements of Wiggins’ Dogma 65.1 are recognisable in the latest iteration, the Dogma F12, the frame platform has come an awful long way in 7 years. Looking briefly at the family free, The 65.1 Think 2 saw another victory in 2013 under Chris Froome before being retired to make way for the Dogma F8. That frame, which won two Tours and ushered in a fresh, hugely aerodynamic platform, also set the benchmark for stiffness at the time. The F10 swiftly followed and shared in the successes of its brethren and marked Pinarello’s bi-yearly product cycle.
That frame shape is certainly recognisable with the Dogma F12, but Pinarello has turned the aero dial-up several notches and made the first significant changes to the model since the F8 was introduced.
The sweeping downtube, curved to make way for the bidons. That flowing, bowed fork proving to be hugely beneficial in the wind. And a brand-new integrated Most Talon handlebar and stem combo, tucking the majority of the cables out of sight. The disc iteration actually hides all the cables, so if rim brakes aren’t your thing, the Italians have you covered.
That whistle-stop tour brings us to 2019 and the introduction to the brand-new thoroughbred, the Pinarello F12.
As with most new bikes and especially those at the top of the sport, the new Dogma was developed with pro-riders in mind. What cannot be disregarded though, is the consumer demand for optimum braking performance, aka, the disc brake. Hence, despite Fausto Pinarello’s initial reservations, the F12 comes in both rim and disc brake iterations, designed together, yet apart, to maintain the super-bike characteristics we have come to expect of Pinarello’s flagship frames regardless of the braking system.
Pinarello is somewhat unique amongst manufacturers – even its fellow Italians – in that it doesn’t produce multiple top-end road platforms for different applications. Team Ineos will ride the Dogma F12 all season round, regardless of the terrain (time trials notwithstanding) with only changes to their Shimano gearing or (controversially) their Lightweight wheels. Perhaps this is Fausto sticking to his guns and saying that the F12 – and the F8 and F10 before it – are the ultimate all-rounders. After all, it’s difficult to argue with him, just take a look at the last five Tour de France General Classification listings.
Super-bikes are super-bikes, they’re light, stiff and aero, this we know and this needs no further embellishment. Instead, though I would rather celebrate the F12’s individuality. In a world of very similar-looking semi-aero bikes, the Dogma manages to retain its feeling of exclusivity, playfulness and desirability. Supported obviously by it’s impressive Grand Tour pedigree and the heritage of its namesake, the Dogma is also completely iconic. The organic curves, brave lines and striking colours make it a bike difficult to ignore, even if your wallet may complain rather loudly. Still, that’s something to take up with Fausto Pinarello himself as he joins us on stage at the Rouleur Classic as one of our Innovators.
The Pinarello Dogma F12 is naturally available in some very exceptional builds. The bike we borrowed for issue 19.5 of Desire was this stunning red and black model, shod with Shimano Dura-Ace throughout, rim brakes and hoops from Fulcrum.
We have it on good authority that the SRAM eTap AXS version comes in some truly ostentatious colours too if you’re after something a little more wireless or a little less subtle.
Pinarello will be exhibiting at the 2019 Rouleur Classic, for tickets or more information, head over to rouleurclassic.cc
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