In 1996 production began in Australia on a bicycle with many
new features to increase its speed. The Superbike, which features
a special lightweight frame, was designed by a project team
headed by Lachlan Thompson from the Royal Melbourne Institute
of Technology (RMIT) and members of the Australian Institute
of Sport (AIS).
conventional tubular frame has been replaced by an aerodynamically
designed monocoque (single shell) made of carbon fibrepolymer
composite. This material is used widely in space programmes
and Formula One motor racing. Carbon fibrepolymer composite
reduces aerodynamic drag because it can be:
high strength-to-weight ratio.
broken with Superbike
Designed and manufactured in Australia, the Superbike has
re-written the records in cycle racing, achieving 23 world
championships and three world records in four years.
The Australian-designed Superbike helped cyclists win:
Games (Victoria BC, Canada)
Junior Track Championships (Italy)
Track Championships (Bogota, Colombia)
Olympic Games (Atlanta)
World Track Championships (Manchester, England).
The development of the Superbike through the collaboration
of athletes and researchers at high-tech research facilities
is an example of the emergence of sports technology as an
industry in Australia. Unlike most equipment used by elite
athletes, the Superbike was also designed for low-cost, high-volume
manufacture, for the road as well as the track.
Superbike was manufactured in Melbourne by the company Bike
Technologies, headed by former Olympic cyclist Sal Sansonetti.
The advanced racing bicycle manufactured by Bike Technologies
was the first bicycle manufactured in Australia since Pacific
Dunlop moved Malvern Star production to Taiwan in 1990. It
is an example of scientific research and engineering development
applied to competitive sport.