After what seems like eons (it’s not) in the bike industry, rarely does a new release of anything do *anything* for me. I remember the halcyon days of scouring new catalogs, dissecting the minutiae of each brand’s offering. It turns out everything’s just rehashed, incrementally altered crap from the year before. However, I’ll admit there are still some real game-changing products out there. Yet, how are they presented? A rep who sat a company meeting ingesting the latest marketing buzzwords regurgitates it at you at the shop level, leaves a catalog, sees you in a few months. It’s the same as it’s always been.
Rapha, on the other hand, has me foaming at the mouth, considering parting company with monetary denominations I do not have. And yes, some of the products are rehashed versions of previous years product sporting on fresh colorways. But it’s the presentation, man; the presentation.
Below are some of my favorites from Rapha’s Spring/Summer 2013 lineup.
Blue and red. Other companies offer solid primary colored jerseys, but they don’t have this cut, they don’t have the stripe, and they don’t have the lore. The red and blue additions look as though they always been there. The coordinated color accent on the armwarmers is a nice touch.
Link: Rapha Classic Jersey
Pro Team Jersey
I got to test the first release of the Pro Team jersey a few years back. The fit and feel are distinctly different than their Classic offering. This line has progressed and improved since then and the color blasts for this year are fantastic.
Link: Rapha Pro Team Jersey
Women’s Souplesse Jersey
A testament to Rapha’s design sense is creating a jerseys for women that men are jealous of. That dark and light blue are so strong.
Link: Women’s Souplesse Jersey
Pro Team Bib Shorts
I destroyed the first version of the Pro Team bibs testing them a few years ago. Just like their jersey namesake, they’ve gotten better each successive year. And just like this year’s jerseys, these colors rock. Looks like Rapha’s figured out they can push the PT line aesthetically, more so than the Classics.
Pro Team Race Cape
Baller style. A strong, balanced look making you want to wear it. Again, the Pro Tour line allowing for some some aesthetic leeway.
Link: Rapha Pro Team Race Cape