America’s World Cups give us a unique opportunity to see Euro bikes up close. While the domestic UCI calendar does include several C1 events whose requirements include a multinational start list, most races in the United States are decidedly North American.
Early season World Cup races attract the best Europe has to offer, allowing American fans and media alike to see the equipment of Euro teams and riders such as U23 World Champion Inge van der Heijden.
Van Der Heijden rides for CCC-Liv, whose title sponsor provides bikes and equipment. Liv is a subsidiary of Giant Bicycles, and the brand encompasses the company’s female-focused catalog.
Van Der Heijden’s bike bears a strong resemblance to Giant’s TCX carbon cyclocross bike. Teammate Marianne Vos rode a similar Liv frame last season after January 1 and has previously used Giant-branded bikes. Currently, Liv does not offer a carbon cyclocross frame to the public—its two complete bikes are based on an aluminum frame.
The TCX is a long-standing bike in Giant’s catalog and has been ridden to championship victories by riders such as Joris Nieuwenhuis. Made using Advanced-Grade Composite, the frame has a traditional cyclocross geometry with its 60mm of bottom bracket drop. It is also fairly long, with 43mm chainstays and 50mm of rake.
Van Der Heijden’s bike was built with a SRAM 1x Red 1 eTap AXS drivetrain that included a 170mm Red 1 AXS Power Meter crankset with a 40t X-Sync 2 direct-mount chain ring.
In the back, she ran the Red eTap AXS derailleur with a 12-speed 10-33t cassette. Launched officially earlier this year, the worst kept secret in cycling ushered in the 12-speed era in cyclocross, provided a 1x electric option for SRAM riders and brought electronic shifting to the Force level.
Van Der Heijden’s wheels were relatively deep Giant-branded carbon tubulars with Centerlock hubs to which SRAM 160mm rotors—somewhat surprising given the size of the rider—were mounted. She used 700c x 33mm Dugast Typhoon tubulars in Iowa City.
Giant, as a company is, well, giant, and it is one of a few companies capable of supplying a complete bike, save the drivetrain. Van Der Heijden’s not-a-TCX is built using cockpit components from the Taiwanese company, with a connect SL handlebar and a rather stout looking carbon stem. The TCX, like most carbon frames in Giant’s catalog, uses an asymmetric D-Fuse seatpost designed to provide comfort in the form of tube splay.
Van Der Heijden's bike did depart from sponsor equipment in a few notable ways. Her pedals were Shimano SPD, marked prototype, and she used a Specialized Ruby saddle.
For more on Van der Heijden's bike, see the photo gallery and specs below.