Always interesting to cast your mind to some of the background minutiae of life with a pro cycling team. Have you ever considered, for example, just how all that kit gets washed day to day during a Grand Tour? No nor had Cyclo, but from Saturday June 30 The Rabobank Cycling Team’s DAF CF materials truck, which houses two washing machines for both kit and the riders’ personal clothing, will be powered by seven solar panels to add a dash of environmental credential. The panels will provide 100% of the power needed not only for the washers but also the refrigerator and freezer used for sandwiches and food for the feed bags.
The new truck, which made its pre-solar debut at the Tour de Suisse, is the result of a collaboration between a number of companies; it was designed by Elenbaas, had the custom chassis (which required space under the loading platform for a series of storage batteries) built by De Rijke, whilst Victron Energy provided the solar panels themselves. Finally, Stork Technical Services prepared the truck to enable it to stow the 35 bicycles and extra wheel sets destined for the Tour de France.