Patrice's Victoire Bellevue
Patrice's Victoire Bellevue
Patrice comes from Auvergne and is fond of long-distance trips. He has heard about Victoire thanks to his friends Jean-Paul and Agnès, owners of the first Victoire Tandem. We met him for the first time because he wanted us to create his dynamo front wheel for the Paris - Brest - Paris 2015 edition. Then, we made together a part of the Love Tour 200 stage between Clermont-Ferrand and Aurillac last summer. A short time afterwards, he placed an order for a bespoke bicycle.
The desire of a custom hand-made steel bike
For a long time he thought about having a bike totally tailored to his needs. Patrice is actually tall and he has never really found any bike adapted to his size. Moreover, being able to follow the progress of the manufacturing of his bicycle was very important to him. As human contact was important to him he hoped to come to the workshop and to exchange with us freely all along the production. It is also an essential element for us because exchange and dialogue represent the basis to build a bespoke bicycle. In this way, we can understand our customer's needs and create a bike which perfectly meets his requirement .
At the beginning, Patrice wanted a sportive road bike like our Véloce model in order to ride for his weekly club rides. The waiting time has allowed him to think more over his project. He treated himself to this custom steel bike for his retirement. As a retired person, he would have more time to make long-distance trips. The desire of roaming travels during several days or of diagonales specific to touring spirit have made Patrice change his mind. He finally chose a comfortable and adjustable bike (eyelts for rack, mudguards and lights) made for long rides. That's why we designed a Bellevue model.
Developpement of the bike
We chose Columbus Life tubing Max profile. This biaxially-ovalised profile enables to get bigger diameters on the areas where constraints are more important, like the headtube or the bottom-bracket. As we have said before, the one-meter eighty-eight man is very tall, that is why he needs a stiff frame, especially when he rides with his club during the week.
The tube Max profile are a good compromise between the standard round tubes and the HSS hydroformed ones in 44mm diameter. In this way we get a very good balance between comfort and rigidity. Thus we put the larger diameters of these tubes in the key areas (headtube, bottom-bracket) in order to increase the welding area. The rear triangle was conceived in the same spirit with seatstays of big diameters and HSS chainstays for more reactivity. For more comfort, we used a 28,6mm-seatpost and a 36mm-headtube.
The headtube is in stainless, with a double laminated tube totally handcrafted in our workshop. The steel fork is also tailor-made, with all the eyelets: lights, fenders and racks. The bended blades increase the comfort.
At last, the stem is handcrafted to adjust the best Patrice's position, and avoid to use some spacers. This enables us to get a drop height adapted to long distance.
Patrice took his bike from our workshop three weeks ago, and he has already ridden about 1000K with it. For his first ride, he went from Montpellier to Clermont-Ferrand in two stages: 450K and 6800m of elevation. The route was chosen according to the villages he wanted to visit.
" The bike is very comfortable, and very safe in downhill. On the flat roads, it is easy to keep the speed. Thanks to the fitting, I am very well positionned on the bike during long rides. I feel a great improving compared to my previous bike. I am currently studying what king of luggage I will use for my long trips. There are the eyelets for the racks, I just have to choose!"
Now Patrice is freshly retired, he will be able to enjoy fully his Bellevue. He will prefer to use his bike instead of his car for his trips. He plans to go to Britanny where lives a part of his family .
Passionate by photography, he likes to tell his adventures on his blog www.alagomme.blogspot.fr .
Update of September 2016 :
Discover the feedback of Patrice after already 5000K on the following link : http://victoire-cycles.com/en/news/victoire-randonneur-bikes-road.html
He also took part with us to the Tour du Vaucluse Historique : http://victoire-cycles.com/en/news/tour-du-vaucluse-historique-2016.html