I think its pretty damn fair to say the two most important races in the cycling calendar are the Giro d’Italia and the Tour de France, who both this year have something to shout about. Firstly, the Giro, which will be marking their 96th edition, which began in 1909, This year the events organisers, RCS Sport Cycling, have invited Sir Paul Smith, to design the leaders jerseys.
The four jerseys are, the Maglia Rosa is the jersey worn by the leader of the time general classification. The Red Jersey is worn by the leader of the points general classification. The Blue Jersey, is the symbol of the King of the Mountain classification leader and finally the White Jersey is worn by the best young rider in the general classification.
In addition to the British designer’s signature on the jerseys’ collar, the left sleeves will bear the iconic Paul Smith stripes as the hallmark of his work. The race started on 4th May with the Grand Departure in Naples. The riders will then face 21 stages finishing up on May 26th in Brescia. Paul said recently of this collaboration;
“I started cycling at the age of 12 and raced until I was 18. A bad crash put me in hospital for several months, after which I discovered the world of creativity, design and fashion and started my career, which luckily has progressed to what it is today.
During that period I have always followed cycling and have been privileged to meet many key riders, building friendships with Bradley Wiggins, Mark Cavendish, David Millar and many more. I also have a huge collection of jerseys from the 70s right up to current times, often signed by the riders.
With all this in mind, it was an absolute honour and delight to be asked to design the four jerseys for the Giro and I hope that the simple approach that I’ve made is acceptable to you all; putting red piping with the pink, cleaning all of the jerseys up to keep them as simple as possible and adding a little drawing of a cyclist by myself onto the jerseys.”
Then, we have the other European cycling powerhouse, The Tour de France, this year celebrating its centenary year and French Sports brand Le Coq Sportif have designed a unique jersey specifically for the 100th year of the tour. The 2013 yellow jersey or Maillot Jaune – is a symbol of this great, now international, bike race – brings innovation to the fore. The ever symbolic yellow of the jersey, even brighter this year, features a translucent « Moor’s Head » imprint on the main body of the jersey. This is a first, in recognition of the island – Corsica – which is to host the Grand Départ of the 100th Tour on 29th June.
Another special feature of this year’s race is the grand finish, which is to take place, for the first time, at night, inspiring le coq sportif to incorporate an array of reflective detail in the golden tunic.