Paris-Roubaix podium bike gallery: Stefan Küng had 12-speed rings on his 11-speed Shimano counter
Shimano sponsors 13 of the 18 men’s WorldTour teams, and while all 18 teams race on the latest 12-speed Dura-Ace groupset, virtually none of the riders use the 12-speed cranks. Instead, most riders have an 11-speed power meter crank.
In Paris-Roubaix, Stefan Küng (Groupama-FDJ) finished third aboard this Lapierre Xelius SL with a different solution: the 9100 series crankset but with 9200 series chainrings. This gives him chainrings designed specifically for the chain. narrower 12-speed instead of the wider 11-speed design.
For the most part, WorldTour riders with the mixed 9100/9200 setup ran without issue, but there were definitely some strings dropped. Kasper Asgreen coming to rest on the Koppenberg as he attempted to defend his Tour of Flanders title was the most notable example. Was it all down to the 11-speed crank with a 12-speed group? It’s hard to say.
Shimano attributed the shortage to limited availability. At the classics, each team seemed to only have one or two 9200 cranks, and of course each team needs multiple groups for each rider.
While other teams may put 12-speed rings on an 11-speed counter, Küng’s bike was the first we spotted this on.
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