What if every team kit was more like EF’s Giro d’Italia outfit?

What if every team kit was more like EF’s Giro d’Italia outfit?


It’s safe to say that EF Pro Racing’s bonkers Giro d’Italia kit ruffled some feathers. A design collaboration between Rapha and the London skate brand Palace, the kit features … well, just about everything. There’s a mottled purple and red polka dot motif. There’s some dude on the right arm. There’s some other dude, this one with a beard and a hat, lurking near the left armpit. In pride of place in the middle of the chest is a duck, wings outstretched, playing the word ‘PALACE’ like an accordion.

As polarising as the kit is, it was like a shot of adrenaline to the chest of the sometimes stuffy world of professional cycling. The UCI’s decision to impose a fine on EF for it only served to heighten the attention paid to all brands involved, gaining coverage not just across cycling media but mainstream outlets like the Wall Street Journal as well.

When the ultra-limited kit and associated merch went up for sale on the Rapha website, it sold out within minutes during the RCC members-only exclusive period. The general public didn’t even get to peck at the crumbs. Almost immediately, the Rapha x Palace collection was being flipped on eBay for inflated prices – single bidons for £80 (US$105 / AU$140), hoodies for £200 (US$260 / AU$360), bib knicks for £350 (US$456 / AU$640) – leaving a trail of frustrated fans, some of whom had signed up to RCC for the privilege. FOMO aside, however, it was a marketing coup – gone as suddenly as it arrived.

Now imagine: what if every team kit was like that?

Haute categorie/haute couture

Stijn Dossche, a cycling fan from Gent, Belgium, wasn’t content to idly ponder that question. Instead, he set to work reimagining the kits of the professional peloton, reinterpreted as collaborations with other fashion, lifestyle and streetwear brands. It’s a glimpse of what could be if other WorldTour teams untapped the marketing potential of non-cycling brands.

“With Palace they reach a wider audience than just cycling fans,” Dossche said. “And as we know, the cycling world is sometimes stuck or is behind on modernizing – look at the fines UCI gave EF; it got the whole world talking about cycling

“It’s a well executed marketing stunt. And the design of the jersey, bikes, cars … is something the cycling world needs, I think. I personally love it, but the fact that they push those boundaries is the most important factor.”

Three things are striking about Dossche’s designs. Firstly: most of them look fantastic. Secondly: many of them are better than the original. Thirdly: Dossche has an incredibly sharp eye. Little wonder that his little design project is a viral Twitter thread on the verge of blowing up.

Scroll on down for the full thread. And be sure to check out Dossche’s Instagram page where he’s got plenty more of his great kit designs.

What collaborations would you want to see? Which would you wear? Where, for the love of god, is the B&B Hotels x Fubu jersey? Let us know the answer to any and all of the above in the comments below.





Source link