Ability in British bike racing is split into categories. From elite, where the finest racers thrash each other for the chance at World Tour glory, to Category Four, where the legions of committed riders compete for more modest acclaim. In the Lake District on the latest Rapha Cycling Club shoot, our wear testers swapped their racing categories for weather fronts, pedalling through a category five storm. Under dark skies and amidst the floods, we put the latest Autumn/Winter club kit through the wringer.
Lakes of Grey
The new Rapha Cycling Club kit14 November 2017
Rated by the Guardian as “the king of climbs and arguably the hardest road in the land”, Hardknott Pass is 2.2km and 15-odd minutes of gut wrenching effort up switchbacks veering upwards of 30%.
NEW RCC EYEWEAR
Rutted roads and cattle grids tested the new Pro Team Arenberg Glasses – now available in RCC club colours. Our latest performance eyewear features a full frame and high-grip rubber pads on the nose and along the frame arms to keep them secure, however bumpy the ride.
WARMTH WITHOUT WEIGHT
A highlight for the new RCC collection is the Pro Team Insulated Jacket, an extraordinary piece of cold-weather clothing. The jacket, which regulates your temperature during hard efforts by using active insulation, was well-received by the riders during the bracing weather and steep climbs of the Lakes.
THE ULTIMATE COLLABORATION
RCCLDN’s Ben Chatfield was one of the lucky members able to ride the new RCC x Canyon Ultimate CF SLX 9.0 Aero ahead of its launch. His verdict? "Felt every bit as good as it looks. Point it at things and it wants to go after them. I absolutely loved it." Only 50 of the bikes have been made, so move quickly if you’re tempted.
Thermals and Current
The new RCC Souplesse Thermal Jersey is designed for women who like their kit close-fitting and ready for racing. Made of a warm, breathable fabric, it’s the finest solution for cold temperatures and high tempos.
LATEST IN THE LIVERY
New season RCC highlights
RCC TRAINING JACKET
For the winter club run. Combines the comfort of a jersey and the performance of a jacket.
RCC CLASSIC LONG SLEEVE JERSEY
A ‘Sunday best’ jersey made of a beautiful merino wool for the utmost on-bike comfort. Based on the bestselling Classic Jersey II.
RCC PRO TEAM LONG SLEEVE JERSEY
The club race jersey for cold weather competition. Cut close for a streamlined fit, the rear pockets have buttons to secure your race number.
RCC WINTER TIGHTS WITH PAD
Technical tights with a DWR protective coating to keep you warm and dry on cold rides.
RCC SOUPLESSE TRAINING JACKET
Built for warmth in uncertain weather. An excellent option for the winter weekend club ride.
RCC SOUPLESSE THERMAL JERSEY
A close-fitting performance jersey that wicks sweat away. Designed for high-tempo rides.
RCC WOMEN’S BREVET GILET
Windproof, hi-visibility gilet, with reflective stripes and breathable mesh side panels.
RCC SOUPLESSE WINTER TIGHTS
Smart performance leggings for cold rides – weather protective and flattering.
THE RCCLDN SEVEN
All of the riders you see here – as well as the photographer – are London chapter members. Meet them below.
Chris Martin | #9529
A dedicated RCCLDN chapter member, and often ride partner of Freddie, Chris also races for the club. A designer by trade, it’s no surprise he rides a beautiful Rourke frame.
Ben Chatfield | #2878
Ben runs the Bravo Charlie Mike Hotel creative design agency and leads club rides into Kent most weekends. You might recognise him from our RCC photoshoot in the Catskills earlier this year.
Aleda Fitzpatrick | #218
The first ever RCC coordinator, or ‘concierge’ as it was back then, Aleda is the beating heart of the London chapter. Enthusiastic, cultured, and a stylish bike rider.
Freddie Checketts | #9384
You’ll often see Freddie in the hunt for the podium at London’s cyclocross races. Away from the bike, Mr. Checketts is an art dealer.
Cat Forrest | #2372
A longtime friend of Rapha, brand manager Cat was an elite high jumper before taking to riding bikes. You can find her leading club rides out into the Surrey hills.
Anneleen Bosma | #13574
Despite only starting to ride properly a couple of years ago, Anneleen is already a Cat 2 racer. An employee for a fitness brand, the Dutchwoman has lived in London for ten years.
Dan Glasser | #150
Our man behind the camera was Dan, an all-round nice guy who specialises in architectural photography. A dedicated and much-loved club member, he also regularly leads club rides.