Changing Seasons Brings Rapha Windfall – Get Ready

Cooler temperatures wait just up the road, but as we enjoy the temperate end of another brilliant summer, thoughts turn to layers and a little more variety from the cycling wardrobe. I miss wearing my Rapha Jackets, particularly the brilliant red Lightweight Softshell I fell in love with last year. The Stowaways, misty blue, orange and black, sit patiently waiting in the garage for their turn in the rotation (I wore one for the first time in months last week). And the caps are already back at work under my helmet daily. It's good to be home.

For many of us the change of seasons brings with it the anticipation of what's new from our favorite cycling clothier. I'm pleased to report we're going to have a bumper crop of new Rapha kit to choose from this fall and winter, including: full-length trousers (amen); a rain jacket (in 2 colors); overshoes; legwarmers; a series of gentlemen's caps; and many more surprises. You've probably already seen the Rapha blog post but here's the link in case you missed it.

Your intrepid reporter and admitted all-round lucky bastard is fortunate to have several of the pieces in the closet already. I'll be doing a little riding in them and getting some images together so you've got something else to read while you're waiting for Fedex to deliver yours the day after they launch ;-). Of course Brian at twmp will have the full lineup of gear too. Between us we'll get you through those difficult first few days, as you decide what to buy and then wait for it to arrive. If you haven't been saving for this day, stop eating out, and start making sandwiches, you can't afford not to.

Around here September is going to be a heady month for Velodramatic. Interbike, CrossVegas and one spectacular shooting assignment that you'll hear plenty about in a couple of weeks. October will open with Levi's Granfondo and if I survive Coleman Valley Road at mile 80, I'll finally get a chance to put down the cameras and get to work on a photo book compiling the best of 2009. I hope you'll all come along for the ride.

13 Responses to Changing Seasons Brings Rapha Windfall – Get Ready

  1. Glad to hear you’ll be at Levi’s Gran Fondo. I’m doing the Media Fondo but can’t wait to see the event through your lens.

    • Kurt,

      I’m actually riding the Granfondo and suffering. Hope to get a few images but I’m not shooting it proper. Wish I could do both well at the same time ;-)


  2. Jon Moss says:

    Hey Michael,

    I’m also looking forward to wearing some new gear. Over here (in the UK) we do have one problem though.

    The wetness of our Autumn.

    Now don’t get me wrong, I’ll cycle in the rain, but wet, damp and downright English Autumn weather is no fun. I don’t mind cold, but I do mind the drizzle which seems to be a perpetual feature of October / November / December.

    Re. the new Rapha A/W range, I hope the caps are suitably cut so as to be able to wear them off the bike, and I do need some winter gloves, hopefully with no QC issues.



  3. kurt says:

    The leg warmers are a welcome addition.

    I am still on the look out for the soignuer’s bag. Hefty price tag but I am a bit of a luggage nut. The dimensions seem to be the just right for a days worth of gear and it will fit perfectly into the low section of the TT’s “trunk” space.

    It’s almost time to give up the test bike. Will they have to pry it from your cold, dead hands?

    • Kurt,

      Like many others commenting on the Rapha blog… I’ll pretty much be getting “1 of everything” when the AW stuff becomes available.

      I love that soigneur’s bag too. Could be a good item to add to my Christmas wish list (are you reading this Juli).

      Yes, I’ll be sad to see the Tarmac SL3 go but I think I’m good for another week. I haven’t been able to take any glamor shots of her yet, but will before she goes back. I think Specialized was even OK with me riding it for an upcoming century (Best Buddies) down the Pacific Coast Highway on the 12th. Unfortunately these legs of mine can’t climb those hills with only 39/25; I need my compact.


  4. Malk says:

    For Gods sake hurry up.
    I am checking this website every 30 mins so I can see some pictures of this stuff…the pics on the Rapha website are useless. Rapha is my life man…it’s like waiting for a baby to be born.
    Hi Jon, I like you have to put up with the English weather so it is pretty annoying to here Michael talk about “another brilliant summer”, when was the last time we had a brilliant summer here, 1995?

    • OK, I don’t want you to burst a blood vessel in frustration. Afraid I won’t have any preemptive pics here before the actual product launch, but will have some alternative shots here immediately thereafter. Plus you can see what the kit looks like on a normal guy.

      Apologies for the brilliant summer reference… we’re so spoiled here in Northern California, I don’t even look at the forecast any more. I’ve forgotten firecracker summer thunderstorms and slushy winters in Toronto.

  5. Don says:

    I’ll be wearing my $39 Zoic bright yellow jacket for the fourth winter season and saving the money for a proper bike fit. Priorities.
    See ya at the Gran Fondo…go Levi!

    • Don,
      4 winters for $39. That’s definitely getting your money’s worth. Good call on the bike fit, nothing more important. What size are you?


  6. Dan R says:

    Michael: As the fall season begins ( a little earlier here in northern Virginia than in northern California, I’m sure), let me join others in thanking you for your incredibly helpful reviews and photos of riding gear over the past year. You summed it up best above: “. . . you can see what the kit looks like on a normal guy.” Since you set such a high standard with your stowaway articles and photos (both in terms of performance and style in all three colors no less!), I’m especially looking forward to your experience with the forthcoming Rapha rain jacket and how it measures up to the best from Showers Pass.

    Dan R

    • thank you for that Dan. I’m very excited about the new kit and looking forward to giving everyone my take on the new stuff as it becomes available. The comparison to Shower’s pass is an interesting one though I doubt Northern California will cooperate with Rain before November… I might just have to make a trip up to Portland to get some rain.


  7. Don says:

    Bike, I’m a 60 cm seattube.
    Fancy Euro clothes, sadly I’m between L and XL so it’s always a crapshoot if what’s in the bag will fit the body.

  8. BR says:

    !looC ?sdrawkcaB