Ask any collection of triathletes or time trialists about the best wheelset for their events, and you'll mostly likely hear an emphatic chorus of "808" in return. Long-proven as a speed-demon time trial and road race wheel and followed by claims of being the fastest wheel in the world, the Zipp 808 Firecrest Carbon Clincher Road Wheel brings together top-level aerodynamic design and outstanding crosswind handling to roar towards the line.
Make no bones about it, the 808 is aggressively designed to slice through the wind. Zipp uses an updated version of its signature Aerodynamic Boundary Layer Control (ABLC) dimpling with strategically placed and sized dimples across the rim surface to reduce drag and smooth airflow, allowing the wheel to swoop through the air with the confidence and grace of a diving peregrine falcon. ABLC boasts aerodynamic advantages at real-world yaw angles of ten to 20 degrees, which compares favorably to many wheels that feature minimum drag numbers at yaw angles of just five to ten degrees — conditions that occur much less frequently outside of a wind tunnel. In non-techy talk, these wheels go faster and handle better than the competition in the actual conditions you'll experience on the road.
In addition to blazing speed on the flats, the 808's modest weight means it won't hamstring you on the climbs of a hilly route. For the concurrent descents, or in the event of a technical TT course, Zipp makes sure to address the oft-encountered issue of carbon rims overheating under prolonged braking. By using a special, heat-resistant resin in the carbon layup, Zipp succeeds in increasing heat dissipation and reducing the potential for rim failure. Zipp claims that use of this resin has led to an unbeatable record of zero heat-related rim failures in its carbon rims, so you can ride those big descents and twisty courses with confidence that these rims will get you safely through.
In the middle of it all, Zipp uses its updated 77 hub on the front wheel and 177 hub on the rear for a silky smooth, friction-free ride that stays stiff while accelerating back up to speed out of corners. Featuring a new platform and graphics for 2016, these hubs boast increased bearing protection over their predecessors and are ready to roll without any pre-load adjustment.
The rear hub is compatible with a separately sold XD driver body, giving riders options for a wider cassette range of up to 10-42t to accommodate the needs of Zipp's sister-company SRAM's one-by drivetrains. As an added bonus, driver bodies can be swapped out without having to re-dish the wheel. Each wheel includes an updated quick-release skewer with a wider handle than previous models for better leverage while installing the wheel and a lower profile when closed.
Each Zipp 808 Firecrest Carbon Clincher Road Wheel comes with a set of Tangente Platinum Pro Evo brake pads, a Zipp Integrated Valve Extender with valve-core wrench, rim tape, and a quick-release skewer. The rear wheel is available with either a Shimano/SRAM or Campagnolo 11-speed compatible freehub body. Please note that the Tangente Platinum Pro Evo brake pads are designed specifically for use with Zipp's carbon rims. Zipp also recommends a maximum rider weight of 250lb for these wheels.