With the Giro d’Italia just ended, and the Tour de France looming over the horizon, we bikers (or this biker, anyway) start to pay more attention to the pro teams.
I like to see whether their team kit, to use the veddy British expression, has changed at all since last season. Some of the redesigns are forced because of sponsor changes — CSC to Saxo Bank, for example — and some are changed just to have a new look, like Columbia Highroad. They’re pretty spiffy, but would you ever deck yourself out in team kit?
A lot of bikers seem to think that dressing like a pro makes you a poseur — a wannabe — since we recreational cyclists can’t hope to match the performance of the pro tour riders.
But others say there’s nothing wrong with it. If it feels good, do it, etc. The comparison is often made to NASCAR fans who wear racing jackets covered with flashy sponsor logos. They don’t race, and probably couldn’t match the ability of a pro driver if they tried. Then there are fans of U.S. pro football, who wear replica team jerseys with the number of their favorite player. For some reason, no one seems to knock folks who do that.
Besides, a lot of the cycling team jerseys are pretty eye-catching. They’re generally made by prominent manufacturers, so you’re getting good quality items. I especially like oddball ones from defunct teams — they look the part, but maybe I’m less of a poser because the team is no longer active?
Ramon H. says
I was thinking about this the other as I went to the (3) local bike shops: each has their own “team kit” which they sell at full price. So let me get this straight, I will be doing advertising for your store all around town and I still have to pay full price? What is wrong with this picture? Anyways, just about every charity ride that I done tends to have their own “team kit” as well. Now, if you believe in that particular cause, then I guess it is a good thing to wear. Another good one is to wear the “team kit” of your local riding group. So far, I have been wearing fairly generic or solid color jerseys.
The team kits can be very high quality, and the jerseys you get at charity rides sometimes are too. You’re supporting the team if you buy them, just like when you buy the high dollar team clothing for your favorite NCAA, NBA, NFL, MLB, MLS, Premier League, etc. team. Buy ’em if you want ’em…
I think I’d feel foolish getting dropped in a Caisse d’Epargne getup. Jelly Belly, not so much.
I’d feel pretty much better reading this blog if without that photo. Simply because I can’t concentrate on what I am reading because I keep on laughing everytime I take a glimpse on that photo.
Sine Botchen says
I’ve often wondered what the etiquette was on wearing “team” jerseys. If you’re tooling along in an Astana kit and Lance happens to roll up would he threaten you with physical violence and make you take the jersey off right there on the spot? I certainly hope not, but probably wouldn’t blame him if he did…
I’ve often lusted after a few of the pro team jerseys – especially Discovery Channel since I loved the white and blue – but just can’t bring myself to wear one. I am, however, getting pretty bored with my current kit of blue, bluer, and bluest. I also agree on the bike shop jerseys. I like the design of one of my local shops, but can’t see paying that much money to advertise for them. Why didn’t I get one free with the $1300 bike I bought?
I am on the fence when it comes to team jerseys. I own one Discovery jersey my wife bought me and I have to say that the quality is far superior to any other jersey I own. But, I can’t get myself to purchase any myself because of the price they want.
Not too long ago while riding along the beach I stopped for water and here was this very overweight man wearing a polka-dot jersey (I know not a team jersey)
The visual was, well, to be friendly: ridiculous. However, I struck up a conversation with him and learned that his inspiration of getting into shape came from watching the mountain stages in the TDF and him wearing this jersey reminds him of what he needs to do to get healthier- pedal a stroke at a time.
I might be wrong, but I believe that many are inspired by their heros and teams and wearing their colors might help them, help themselves.