All of the previous frame buliders were able to give Stybar a carbon fiber frameset.....
I think prior to QuickStep changing from Merx to Specialized, Stybar had been riding Ridley X-Night's rebadged in Merx colors.
This is how it went:
Merckx cycles was informed in January that Stybar signed with Quick Step. They didn't have a crossbike in their range so they started developing one. At the beginning of the season Stybar rode a rebadged Ridley X-Night. In Ruddervoorde (Oct. 9) the new Merckx CMX frame was ready so Stybar used it. During the Koppenbergcross (Nov. 1) he switched back to the rebadged Ridleys which he used till the end of December. In January he started with the Specialized for the first time.
Nice season for the mechanics
The Specialized "Bunny Hopper" is indeed aluminium. This makes perfect sense, Specialized don't have a carbon crossbike in their range.
Things were different in 2007. Quick Step changed from Time to Specialized and Tom Boonen had back problems because he didn't fit the geometry of the Specialized carbon bikes. After weeks of struggling Boonen used a custom-made aluminium Specialized in 'Dwars door Vlaanderen' and won the race. He even thanked the bike when he crossed the finish line:http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=6u8HLuyQ1Zo