In April 2010, the 303 Tubular proved once and for all that carbon wheels can do more than just survive on the fearsome cobblestones of Paris-Roubaix and the Tour of Flanders. They can dominate. But Fabian Cancellara’s crushing victories for Team Saxo Bank - the first for any type of carbon wheels in the Cobbled Classics - were far from the whole story. Cervélo TestTeam’s Thor Hushovd and Roger Hammond finished 2nd and 4th at the Roubaix Velodrome, and all eight of Cervélo’s riders completed “The Hell of the North” without a single wheel incident on the same, stock 303s available through any Zipp retailer. Those successes marked the culmination of an impressive run for the latest version of the versatile 303. At 1171g per wheelset, the 303 is even lighter than certain dedicated “climbing wheels” that sacrifice ride quality, durability, and aerodynamics in the name of light weight. Amazingly, the 303 optimizes all four metrics - with the results to match. The 303 owes its toughness to a 27.5mm-wide rim profile designed to absorb bumps by flexing like a leaf spring. This improves on the already superb impact resistance of Zipp’s Carbon Bridge technology while offering a comfortable, forgiving radial compliance. At the same time, the wide rim increases the 303’s lateral stiffness for sprinting, cornering, and accelerations. Especially with 23-25mm tires, the 303’s width also provides a significant aerodynamic advantage over narrower rims - even ones with much deeper profiles. With a fully toroidal aero shape, the 303 did its part to help Fabian ride solo for 40 windy miles at Flanders and Roubaix and build up a combined margin of victory of more than 3 minutes, including the victory celebrations. Despite its aero performance, the 45-mm rim depth and ABLC dimples keep the 303 stable in crosswinds, even for smaller riders like Snowsill. Meanwhile, the 303’s tire bed has been designed to protect against tire damage and pinch flats at low pressure, and for more precise mounting of tubulars. In poor weather, riders will appreciate the improved brake modulation and stopping power of the angled brake track.
Rim Type: Tubular (285v4 rim)
Rim finish: Dimpled
Hub Spec 88/188
Weight Front: 519g, Rear 652g
Aerodynamics - time and watt savings over 40K for 303 wheelset: 72 seconds / 24 watts.
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