Le Col clothing launched

First look at the latest UK clothing brand

Launched by former professional cyclist Yanto Barker, Le Col is a new UK clothing company. Before retiring, Barker competed at a high level, racing on the continent and finishing 9th in the 2005 Tour of Britain. With his time away from racing he decided to develop his own clothing brand.

Le Col has been 18 months in development and draws on Barker’s many years as a professional cyclist, and as Barker says “was a way of putting every mile I ever raced to good use with the technical aspect of cycling clothing.”

We asked Barker if being a professional cyclist helped him when it came to designing his own clothing. “Yes! You quickly realise you can’t reinvent the wheel so the fit and look are the main areas you can develop a garment. I have developed everything with a serious aero fit.”

It’s clearly intended to offer a high performance fit, but isn’t focused solely at racing cyclists, as Barker points out: “It’s not really aimed at competitive cyclists, but has quite a strong race feel. Being a racer I didn’t want to design a compromised piece of kit so what you have is aerodynamic and efficient at its job, I think those qualities can be appreciated by all cyclists at every level. At the end of the day it does what cycling kit should do and well. I have always ridden with this philosophy, if you look good, you feel good if you feel good you give more to what you’re doing and if you give more you get more out!”

The clothing is all designed in the UK and manufactured in Italy, and Baker has put the development time to good use. “Every garment has been refined and tailored, nothing has come ‘off the peg’ its all been changed,” says Barker. “Although I didn’t realise at the time I have always paid attention to the clothing we wear as pro’s so I could look back and use the experiences of the 250,000 miles I have ridden as a full time pro around the world.”

The range includes understated short sleeve and long sleeve jerseys, a winter jacket, winter gilet, baselayers, bib short and bib tights, and bolder Le Col branded jerseys and shorts. There are also accessories such as socks, caps, overshoes and more.

While it all sounds good on paper, we’ll be putting some of it through a thorough test to find out just how well it performs. Watch this space…

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