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Apparel - RCUK 100 2016

Apparel

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Introduction

Poor clothing choices have left many a cyclist shivering under a tree during a downpour, being unable to pull the brake levers in the winter or committing the cardinal sin of riding topless in the summer.

There are so many clothing brands out there now it’s hard to know where to start, especially when they all have reasons to claim they’re the best. But there are some manufacturers with legitimate claims to the throne, whether that’s because they’re value for money, super high tech, have a long and storied history in cycling or, frankly, just look damn good.

And protection from the elements has come on leaps and bounds in the last few years too. Jackets like the Gabba have seen manufacturers’ realise keeping out the wind and rain doesn’t have to come at the expense of fit, and there’s a lot of seriously good kit on the market. We’ve used the 100 as an opportunity to pick out clothing from nine of the best brands out there.

Apparel doesn’t just mean clothing either. It’s shoes, sunglasses and helmets, too. A good pair of shoes are a cyclist’s best friend and despite what you might be told, it’s not vital you buy the set with the stiffest soles on the market. Sunglasses, meanwhile, are another key item in any cyclist’s wardrobe, not just for style but also safety and comfort.

And helmets, when did helmets become so complicated? There’s a whole new category now – aero road – which is what happens when a normal helmet runs into a TT lid at high speed, and some of the designs have to be seen to be believed. They all look so fast.

Clothing

RCUK100 - Pactimo clothing

Pactimo

The US brand have some fantastic kit in their range, and here are a few of our favourites

Pactimo
RCUK100 - Castelli clothing

Castelli

Some of the best offerings from Italy's most iconic clothing brand

Castelli
RCUK100 - POC clothing

POC

Cycling's most en vogue brand keeps things simple, and does so in style

POC
RCUK100 - Ale clothing

Alé

The name might be new, but Alé's quality and experience are tried and tested

Alé
RCUK100 - X-bionic clothing

X-Bionic

By far the most technically advanced kit on the market today comes from this Swiss brand

X-Bionic
RCUK100 - Sportful clothing

Sportful

Fiandre range built to cope with the changeable conditions of Flanders

Sportful
RCUK100 - Rapha clothing

Rapha

The British brand have nailed down some bright colour choices for next summer's kit

Rapha
RCUK100 - Endura clothing

Endura

WorldTour-tested Scottish brand offer quality kit at sensible prices

Endura
RCUK100 - Morvelo clothing

Morvélo

They're a byword for understated class and progressive designs, and their new range looks better than ever

Morvélo

Sunglasses

RCUK100 - Oakley Jawbreaker sunglasses

Oakley Jawbreaker

If they're good enough for Cav...

Oakley Jawbreaker
RCUK100 - Rapha Sunglasses

Rapha sunglasses

Aviator-style shades for your mid-ride coffee stop

Rapha sunglasses
RCUK100 - POC Do Blade Raceday sunglasses

POC DO Blade Raceday

Fashionable, popular and functional sunglasses from on-fleek brand

POC DO Blade Raceday

Helmets

RCUK100 - Mavic CXR Ultimate helmet

Mavic CXR Ultimate

Lightweight, extensively-tested aero road helmet

Mavic CXR Ultimate
RCUK100 - Bontrager Ballista helmet

Bontrager Ballista

'Aero finally got cool'

Bontrager Ballista
RCUK100 - Giro Synthe, helmet

Giro Synthe

The aero road helmet that's already a firm favourite in the pro peloton

Giro Synthe
RCUK100 - Lazer Blade helmet

Lazer Blade

Mid-range price tag, top-end performance

Lazer Blade
RCUK100 - Kask Protone helmet

Kask Protone

Team Sky's helmet of choice strikes the perfect balance between aerodynamics and comfort

Kask Protone

Shoes

RCUK100 - Specialized S-Works 6 Shoes

Specialized S-Works 6

These are the lightest, stiffest shoes the Californian company have ever made

Specialized S-Works 6
RCUK100 - Mavic CXR road shoes

Mavic CXR

Mavic's new aero shoes might be the fastest-looking product on the market today

Mavic CXR
RCUK100 - Shimano RP9 road shoes

Shimano RP9

New high-end shoes from Shimano that cater for the day to day rider

Shimano RP9
RCUK100 -Fizik R1B shoes

Fizik R1B Uomo

Out with the old and in with the new as Fizik ditch the ratchets for dials

Fizik R1B Uomo
RCUK100 - Bontrager Classique road shoes

Bontrager Classique

Classic-look kicks from Bontrager that match style with substance

Bontrager Classique
RCUK100 - Sidi Vernice Wire Carbon shoes

Sidi Carbon Wire

The Italian giants are back with a new top flight shoe that'll set pulses racing

Sidi Carbon Wire

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