Loic Bruni has been running a set of protoype Formula brakes on his bike for the last two World Cup races, brakes that use a four piston caliper instead of the two piston setup
we saw him experimenting with earlier in the season at Crankworx Rotorua. There are currently only two sets in existence, and they're numbered 000 and 001 accordingly.
One set is installed on his race bike, and the other is on a Specialized Demo that's bristling with wires - it's been outfitted with a data acquisition device that can detect everything from suspension movement to how often Loic is using his brakes. Jack Roure, Loic's mechanic, said that after analyzing the data they found that Loic usually has his lever ever-so-slightly pulled, but with the new model he's braking less, and getting quicker times.
Loic said that he's been happy with the performance of the brakes; after all, they survived the sustained steepness of Vallnord without any fading, but he's not completely satisfied with his own riding. “My main problem this year is because I'm looking for my pace – I go too fast, brake too late; it's more my problem than the brakes. When I brake it's all good, but I wish, like, in Andorra, the last corner, the last hard one, I was like a little bit scared, and I braked a lot. I saw that that was my riding mistake. I need to work on that, and obviously here it's a little bit harder, but it's ok.”
At the moment there aren't any set plans for the brakes to go into production - for now Formula are concentrating on helping one of the fastest riders on the planet to go even faster.
Data acquisition is becoming more and more common, but Loic and his mechanic Jack Roure aren't newcomers to the technology - they've been working with it for multiple seasons.