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Build Kit


S-Works Tarmac SL8


Shimano Dura-Ace 11-30 / 52x36 172.5 Crank Set


ENVE 4.5 SES + Chris King R45 Disc Black Hubs


Pirelli P Zero Tubeless 700x28c


Specialized Roval Rapide Carbon Integrated

Finishing Kit

Specialized Power S-Works Saddle

Ceramic Speed BSA Coated BB Bottom Bracket

Arundel Oil Slick Carbon Bottle Cages

This week we’re featuring an extremely clean, all black S-Works Tarmac SL8, built for Michael.

Originally coming to us for a service and tune-up of his 2015 Cervélo S5, Michael soon reached out for a new bike project. A competitive rider who used to often race his S5 in NYC events, Michael has recently found less time for competitive riding, something which often happens after two kids and a busy schedule! He decided it was time for a modern road bike, with disk brakes and electronic components that would suit his current road riding.

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After fitting and reviewing his current bike position, we had all the information to order him a new bike. There are a wide range of bikes that would suit Michael's needs, but it was the newly released S-Works Tarmac SL8 that caught his eye, the bike's aerodynamic and performance optimization on the SL7 making it a clear favourite for him.

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The SL8 is very much the new kid on the block, taking the place of the SL7 at the top of the S-Works food chain. Already tested on the world stage by Soudal-Quick-Step and SD Worx, the aim of this bike was to improve weight and aerodynamics without sacrificing ride feel, combining the best of the Venge and Aethos models to create the fastest road bike possible. If this Rouleur review is anything to go off, it looks like they achieved that with flying colours.

With performance that might rival his Cervélo S5, and 32mm tire clearance enough to fit capable gravel tires, this is a bike that can really do it all.

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For all these reasons, and with all the hype surrounding this new release, demand for the frame was extremely high, and getting it built would be difficult. Thankfully, we have a few industry insiders that were able to help us get Michael’s dream bike made. Our thanks go to Kevin, our inside rep at Specialized for getting us the precious cockpit allocation, and for directing us to the right local shop, Long Island’s Rotations Bike Center, for the frame transfer. Friends at Chris King USA then helped us to secure the custom ENVE wheels with their R45 hubs, and with the rest of the components available in house, we were able to turn the bike around in less than 4 weeks.

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The final bike is a sharp, minimal matte black road machine. With the range of colours that Specialized offer, and the unlimited choice that custom frame painting provides, there’s something special about an all black bike. Like the BMC Timemachine SLR01 Mpc, or Luis’ FiftyOne Assassin, these focused bikes keep all the focus on performance, a stealthy look flying under the radar in the coolest way possible.

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Our thanks go to all of our friends and partners in being able to deliver Michael his dream road bike. While we like to do as much as we can in house, sometimes knowing when to reach out to others in the industry can make the difference when delivering truly special bike. We’re can’t wait to see Michael on the road, using this bike for what it was built for.