A closer look at Bahrain Victorious' 2024 pro bike: Matej Mohorič’s Merida Reacto

The team’s Merida bikes are sporting a new colour but the components remain the same

Clock11:39, Thursday 14th December 2023
Bahrain Victorious' Merida Reacto


Bahrain Victorious' Merida Reacto for 2024

It’s that time of the year when the next road season is fast approaching and, in preparation, teams are drip-feeding their new kits and bikes.

While some teams only make minor changes, others completely revamp their look, like Bahrain Victorious who have ditched their now-traditional red colours for a white ensemble. It’s not a completely new appearance, having been used at the 2023 Tour de France, but will take a little getting used to, as is always the case at the beginning of a new season.

Alongside the new kit, the team’s Merida bikes have also undergone a makeover and we managed to get our hands on Matej Mohorič’s Reacto bike at a recent training camp to get a closer look.

Red out, white in

Mastering a bike’s design is a fine art and for their 2024 bikes Bahrain Victorious have erred more towards the subtle end of the scale. Closely matching the team’s kit, a white colourway dominates the majority of the bike, but it’s accented on the top tube by a pale blue and gold design. Apart from sponsor logos, the fork is the only other area of the bike where the bike’s white theme is broken up, once again with a pale blue zig-zag design.

It’s unlikely to tickle the fancy of those who prefer an in-your-face design, but we think it’s a great look - although that may change once we’ve seen one at the finish of Paris-Roubaix where the white design is unlikely to stand up to the rigours of French farm roads.

The new design is a far cry from the more vibrant red colours that the team have used since their inception, although it’s not totally new as a similar design was first debuted at the 2023 Tour de France. Labelled as ‘pearl white’, that kit was designed to symbolise pearl fishing in Bahrain and the theme has been revived for 2024.

Reacto: all-out aero bike

As is given away by the bike’s aero silhouette with deep, bulky tube profiles, the Reacto is Merida’s aerodynamic offering and sits alongside the brand’s pure climbing bike, the Scultura.

First released in 2011, the Reacto has been a regular fixture in the WorldTour peloton for multiple years now and has been within Bahrain-Victorious’ arsenal since their inception in 2017. Before that it was used by Lampre-Merida, who the Taiwanese brand sponsored for four seasons.

In line with modern trends, the latest version has dropped seatstays and chunky chainstays, while the deep tube profiles are something that we’ve become accustomed to.

Shimano’s WorldTour dominance continues

Shimano has been the dominant groupset brand at WorldTour level for a number of seasons now and that shows no signs of abating in 2024. As of our last count, the Japanese brand can count 15 teams on its rosters, up from 14 in 2023 after AG2R Citroën jumped ship from Campagnolo - that was bleak news for the historic Italian brand which won’t sponsor any teams at cycling’s highest level in 2024. That number is likely to return to 14 teams, though, as Bora-Hansgrohe were recently spotted using SRAM equipment.

Either way, 14 out of 18 teams is an impressive tally and Bahrain Victorious are one of the teams who contribute towards the figure. Their riders will once again use the Dura-Ace groupset which, by our count, was a 54/40t set-up on Mohorič’s bike. Riders will change their cranksets according to a race to optimise their set-ups for the given parcours, so this will change throughout the season.

Vision components

Bahrain Victorious are also partnered with Vision which provides both the wheels and handlebars.

The Metron 60 SL wheels have rim depths to match their names and are on the more aero side of the scale - unsurprisingly on an aero bike. There are shallower options in Vision’s line-up for days in the mountain, but they’ll usually accompany the Scultura instead of the Reacto.

Up front, the Vision Metron handlebars provide a sleek look with no cables in sight. That’s the norm rather than the exception and you’ll struggle to find any cables splaying out of bikes in the modern WorldTour peloton. This, of course, is due to aerodynamics and even a small cable adds extra drag, which could cost watts. When races are sometimes won by the width of a tyre, every watt counts.

Completing the bike, Bahrain Victorious uses the Continental Grand Prix 5000 tyres. We didn’t get official confirmation of the width on Mohorič’s bike, but we’d guess 28mm which is by far the most popular option in the modern peloton. A Prologo Scratch M5 saddle sits atop the Merida seatpost.

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