At the age of 42, Movistar's Alejandro Valverde will be hanging up is wheels at the end of the 2022 season. El Bala will be hoping to go out with a bang after 18 years on the Spanish team, and this year's Giro d'Italia will be the final one of his glittering career.
While Valverde has admitted he won't be targeting the general classification, he'll be gunning for stage wins aboard his Canyon Aeroad. We got a closer look at the four-time Liège-Bastogne-Liège winner's Giro d'Italia bike.
In a fetching blue and black paintwork, Valverde's Canyon Aeroad is a bike that looks fast. As the name suggests, the bike focusses on aerodynamics but also maintains a low weight, meaning it can be used across both flat and hillier parcours. At 5'8ft, Valverde rides a relatively small frame.
The bike is equipped with a 12-speed SRAM Red ETAP AXS groupsets and Valverde was riding 52/39T chainrings.
Movistar use SRAM's premium groupset offering as opposed to Shimano's, both of which are likely the most technologically advanced groupsets on the market today. Unlike Shimano, the SRAM groupset operates on a one-button-per-lever operation and is neater as it is without any electrical cables. SRAM is also cheaper and currently has better availability.
Valverde's bike had Zipp 454 NSW wheels, equipped with new Continental GP 5000 tubeless tyres.
Valverde's bike had relatively narrow handlebars and he's kept his shifters straight, not succumbing to the current trend of inward facing hoods to allow riders to get in to a more aerodynamic position. As the Movistar rider will likely be targeting the hillier stages, straight levers provide a more comfortable position for longer climbs.
Valverde uses a carbon braided Fizik Anteres 00 saddle, a lightweight road saddle weighing just 140 grams.
A sticker on the top tube of the Aeroad promotes Bala's thriving Twitter account. Valverde is close to reaching half a million followers, so we understand the bit of self-promo.