Tim Van Berkel grew up watching the Kona Ironman race. It’s the event that inspired him to give the sport of triathlon a try at age 17. At the time Van Berkel was an Australian rules football player, and he saw triathlon as a good way to stay fit.
It didn’t take long for the young Aussie to get hooked on triathlon. At 21, Van Berkel turned pro, and three years later he won Ironman West Australia. He knew then that he had what it took to focus on the long-distance events.
Last year Van Berkel realized a lifelong goal when he competed at the Ironman World Championships in Hawaii for the first time. He took the triathlon world by storm when he battled his way to the front of the action, running his way up to fourth place before succumbing to leg cramps and eventually finishing seventh. That top-10 finish at his first trip to Kona was an impressive debut to say the least.
This year Van Berkel is back, and he has a special new Giant bike that he helped develop over the last year. The all-new Trinity Advanced Pro is engineered to be the world’s fastest triathlon bike in real-world racing conditions. It features Giant’s AeroSystem Shaping Technology and a number of innovative triathlon-specific features including the AeroVault integrated hydration and storage system to give triathletes a built-in advantage on race day.
Using extensive Computational Fluid Dynamics (CFD) analysis and dynamic wind-tunnel testing, more than 250 frame configurations were developed and tested before the design was finalized.
Van Berkel, who lives and trains in Boulder, Colorado, has been riding pre-production versions of the new Trinity Advanced Pro for the past few months. In September he won the Sunshine Coast 70.3 in Australia riding the new bike, and since then he has been preparing for Kona.
Here’s a detailed look at the bike that Van Berkel is racing at the 2015 Ironman World Championships.