This year’s season has got off to a great start, with Olympic Champion Lizzy Yarnold kicking things off with bronze in the opening World Cup race in Lake Placid.
tesa, a global market leader in the manufacturer and supply of adhesive tapes, has been providing its tesa® 4651 tape for many years to optimise the performance of the sleds used by the British Skeleton team.
Athletes competing in the skeleton reach speeds of up to 140kmph and experience G-forces up to 5G whilst lying face down on what appears to many to be little more than a high-tech tea tray. The premium acrylic coated cloth tape offers high adhesion and excellent tensile strength and is used on the handles of the special grade mild steel saddle, providing a reliable grip on various surfaces ranging from powder coated polymer, zinc or spray paint finishes.
The tape is also used to fasten different types of foam padding on the top of the saddle where the athlete lies. On the bellypan, typically made from carbon fibre sheet or GRP and finished in gel-coat, lacquer or paint, it is used to optimise air flow and speed in general, by covering the holes where the runner fits. It also assists in the ‘push’ start which requires a 20 to 30 metre sprint before the competitor loads on board.
To enhance the aerodynamics further, most of the British athletes apply the tape along the edges of the sled where the bellypan meets the padding.
“Delivering a performance platform to push on from was the mandate for the opening weeks of the season and the last few days delivered that almost perfectly," said GB Skeleton's head of performance, Danny Holdcroft.
Jeremy Smith, marketing manager for tesa UK, said “We are proud to know that tesa products play an important part in helping the team to deliver such a sizzling start to the season and we hope it sets and scene for future successes.”
Will joined Fastener + Fixing Magazine in 2007 and over the last 10 years has experienced every facet of the fastener sector – interviewing key figures within the industry and visiting leading companies and exhibitions around the globe. Will manages the content strategy across all platforms and is the guardian for the high editorial standards that the brand is renowned.