You know the person that is incapable of riding 20 metres down the road without getting oil on their white jersey, always has a hole somewhere on their clothing, and tends to have a sticky exploded gel in at least one jersey pocket? That’s me!
I avoid white kit, as a rule, because I do not trust myself to keep it clean. It is therefore unfortunate that my cycling club have a fair amount of white in their kit design. However, you have to make an exception for club kit because riding in it is about representing the guys and girls who support you.
My club cheer me on when they can, celebrate with me when it goes well, are kind to me when I’m injured and wingey, and they’re great at organising off-season get togethers, too.
Our club colours used to come out of the Endura factory, but recently a minor mutiny amongst the racers resulted in the appointment of a new supplier: Castelli.
I was pretty excited when the kit arrived – so much so that I resorted to the age old art of ‘the selfie’ to share my glee on Facebook…
The bibs are based in the Castelli ‘Free’ bibs and they are my favourite, with a quality chamois, leg grippers that don’t give me sausage thighs, and classy bright colours.
The jersey is the Team Edition in Medium – it’s a bit roomy and I’d rather it fitted like my much loved Castelli Perla jersey which I also have in Medium, but the matching set is still awesome. Now I wear the kit to ride as often as I can keep it clean.
Obviously, shorts and jersey aren’t going to keep me warm all winter – so I team them with my favourite warmers – my 2XU compression base layer, 2XU compression tights, matching Endura arm warmers (that I bought off a friend from the club for a bargain price), and Castelli Diluvio overshoes.
The 2XU items have been favourites for a long time. So much so that most of the silver pattern has peeled off, and the tights have a hole in the knee where I crashed one wet, dark winter morning at 30 miles per hour.
The overshoes were purchased after a ride to work which ended in me standing in the shower pointing the jet of hot water directly at my toes, trying to make them a normal colour. I bought them for the journey home, and they really do transform my feet into happy little radiators on the ends of my ankles.
There we go. My favourite kit is about warmth, functionality – and finally – flying the flag for my team.
Michelle Arthurs is a Total Women’s Cycling contributor who generally rides on the road and races time trials, but likes the odd off-road jaunt. She blogs about riding and everything bike related at ridewriterepeat.com.