"My Race Day Setup" will be a series where we review the race setups for many of our A2 team athletes (pros & amateurs) and review why these athletes made the choices they did.
Name: Megan Tuncer
Professional or Age Grouper: Age grouper
Number of Years Racing: 9 years
A2 Bike Size: Small (I often ride XS in other brands, but my reach is long compared to leg length, so a small worked well for me for A2.)
. . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .
I switched to riding A2 after riding a Liv Avow for many years. I was having a few issues with the cockpit of my Avow being hard to adjust and often requiring me purchasing a lot of new hardware every time I wanted to adjust reach or aerobar angle. The particular frame that I had as well offered few spaces for extra storage and hydration, so while I had gotten good at getting creative with zip ties and pockets, I knew that would be a must when getting a new bike.
I'm very lucky to work at A2, so it was a bit easier to bother Brandon for help when choosing my bike setup (thank you, Brandon!).
ShiftingMy first and biggest decision was what kind of shifting I wanted. I opted to go with 12 spd SRAM Rival for a few reasons.
- 12 spd: That's really the way the industry is going, and I didn't want to have to replace a bunch of equipment yet again in a year. This did require me to change the cassette/setup on my Wahoo smart trainer, but it was a pretty simple swap.
- SRAM Rival: Switching to wireless electronic shifting was probably the change that I was the most excited for. Not only is electronic shifting easier and far more fun -- I mean, that little noise that the derailleur makes while shifting is pretty sweet -- but I also think it makes for a safer race experience. It's hard to shift when you're descending because it's safer to have your hands on the base bars, and to shift into a harder gear you have to figure out when the least unsafe time is to remove your hand(s). With the option to shift from the base bars, I don't have to do any of that thinking anymore. It's also great when you're climbing, but you're going a lot slower when climbing.
SRAM vs Shimano: The great debate! I can only tell you why I chose SRAM, although I received a lot of advice and opinions from many people. Ultimately, I liked the fact that it was wireless, it could be adjusted and checked via an app, and it was easy to charge with removable batteries. I'm not the most tech-savvy, so having something that felt easy was huge for my peace of mind.
Pictured above (photo from SRAM) is the SRAM app, which lets you check batteries, adjust indexing and more -- even when you're without service (which I sometimes am on more backcountry Oregon roads!). Learn more at https://www.sram.com/en/sram/road/collections/etap-axs
WheelsMy wheel choice was a combination of budget, handling confidence, race conditions and need for speed (lol). I know I have fairly good bike handling, so while I had never ridden a wheel this deep in the front before, I knew I could handle it with a bit of practice. I ended up getting the Vision 81 set, but I was extremely lucky and was able to borrow a disc in the back for IRONMAN Coeur d'Alene. I knew my next big race would be Kona, and discs aren't allowed, so I'd rather have a wheelset that I could ride at every race.
StorageBecause I only race middle and long distance triathlons, having storage is a MUST. I have the Profile Design BTA FC25 front hydration, XLAB Stealth Pocket for food, and the Bontrager Draft Box in the rear for a flat kit. I don't like to stop at special needs unless I have to, so I try to carry everything I need on me during a long race.
SaddleI swapped out the standard saddle for one of my own just because I'm INCREDIBLY picky. I really only ride COBB because I prefer a firmer saddle that's nice and narrow. I discovered that I actually need a narrow saddle after working with a bike fitter who did a proper saddle fitting, and I've never looked back. Often times it may take some trial and error for you to figure out what works best for you!
BrakesI was SO EXCITED to finally have disc/hydraulic brakes! While I do agree that disc brakes are often less important in triathlon as they are in traditional bike racing, I do enjoy descending fairly aggressively and had quite a few hilly races in 2023. The hydraulic brakes also are simply better in terms of performance and upkeep -- there's really not much that you need to do once it's set up. Just bring it into your local shop during your offseason/preseason tune ups and include it as part of the once-over.
This was really another peace of mind thing, and there have been a few times that I've been happy for the brakes!
The Important PartUnfortunately the only thing I DON'T have for this bike yet is...a name. If you're not into the whole "naming your bike" thing, feel free to scroll past. But this bike deserves a good name. Anyone have any ideas? Want to send me your bike's name for inspiration?
Send it my way at @a2.bikes on Instagram!