For many of the riders contesting the 2013 Tour de France, the stages along the Cote d’Azur will have felt like coming home.
Chris Froome and Geraint Thomas are just two of the riders resident in the south of France, and as such are neighbours of Café du Cycliste, a clothing brand based on the French Riviera.
With the Tour de France dominating our thoughts, it seemed a good time to put some of their garments to the test.
The Lucienne jersey is the most appropriate for our current temperatures, which rival those of the south of France. There’s the usual mix of polyester and polymide in the weave, but 20 per cent of it is merino wool, a material not usually encountered in summer wear, but our first choice for winter. We’ll be keen to see how it performs.
The fit in the body is best described as relaxed. The small size is similar to the medium of other brands we’ve tested, and so should provide a comfortable fit for riders who haven’t quite obtained a Froome-like physique (a fair proportion of the world’s cycling population).
It’s a different story in the sleeves, where the deep and beautifully tailored cuff offers a soft but fitted feel. The very light panel in the centre of the back is also used beneath the arms, and so in areas most susceptible to sweat. We won’t lack temperatures in which to test their effectiveness.
On a practical front, the Lucienne contains all of the features required of a jersey for serious riding. The full-length zip should offer further ventilation and there’s a classic three pocket configuration on the rear. The left hand pocket has an opening through which a headphone cable can be threaded inside the jersey (the left hand shoulder has a corresponding slot), and on the outside of the right hand pocket, there’s a zipped compartment, which looks about the right size for a credit a card, keys, or bank notes.
The elasticated hem at the bottom of the jersey is lined on the inside with an unbroken silicone band, and at the other end of the garment, there’s a simple, folded collar, neither high or especially low. It’s a nicely finished piece, with subtle branding on the chest and on the left-hand, rear pocket.
We’ll be out and about in the Lucienne jersey in the weeks ahead. Check back soon for a full review.
Website: Cafe du Cycliste
Sizes: XS, S, M, L, XL