Mike Burrows’s blueprint for the future of bike frames Photo: Graham Watson Mike Burrows’s contribution to the design of the modern road bike cannot be overstated. If the British engineer hadn’t come up with the Total Compact Road — aka TCR — for Giant in the mid-1990s we might still be measuring ourselves up for a frame by straddling the crossbar and yanking it upwards.
Burrows, having spent years in cycle design’s hinterlands with his monoblade forks, micro lo-pros and blobby monocoque frames, all regarded as too eccentric for the conservative world of road cycling, finally received mainstream recognition after Chris Boardman won the individual pursuit
at the Barcelona Olympics in 1992 on the Lotus bike that Burrows had originally created .
With his vision validated, Burrows found himself in demand and was snapped up by Taiwanese brand Giant, already by the mid-Nineties one of the world’s largest bike manufacturers.
It was a smart move on Giant’s part as before the advent of the TCR, road bike frames came in at least 10 sizes.
Get your saddle height right
Burrows looked to the mountain bike boom, where most of the innovation in bike design was taking place and where frames with sloping […]