Rapha release long sleeve Country Jerseys

New long sleeve Italy, France and Belgium jerseys added to range for first time

by David Arthur   September 12, 2012  

Rapha has revealed long sleeve versions of their popular Country Jersey today. So now you can honour the great cycling nations of Italy, Belgium and France and pay homage to the likes of Roger de Vlaeminck, Fausto Coppi or Louison Bobet.

They're based on the short sleeve jerseys with a central tricolour chest band, but use a heavier grade of Sportwool to provide good insulation as the temperature begins its gradual slide towards winter.

Three rear pockets described are as 'spacious' for carrying all your essentials on long training rides. The zip is, like the short sleeve jersey, quarter-length. There's a reflective tab on rear pocket and country embroidery on rear pocket and cuffs

Rapha only this week announced details of their autumn/winter range but decided to launch the Country jersey separately. Perhaps because they're available right now through Rapha's website for £140. Choose from six sizes.

24 user comments

Oldest firstNewest firstBest rated

Ooh, I'm first, I'm first...

Here goes...

How much?

posted by Mountainboy [74 posts]
12th September 2012 - 17:32

1 Like

Why not just spin the French one upside down and call it the "British" on. To match the national champ's jersey.......But they get GTF with their prices

Gkam84's picture

posted by Gkam84 [9006 posts]
12th September 2012 - 18:06

2 Likes

according to their website a mere £140. think i will get one of each Surprise

posted by fretters [30 posts]
12th September 2012 - 18:25

1 Like

SERIOUS question here:
How many of the RaphaCynics out there have ever bought and used one of their Jerseys? My black Classic Jersey (short sleeve with arm warmers) is now 6 years old and has around 15,000 miles of sweat and commuting abuse lodged in it's fibres. It has bronzed a bit over the shoulders but is still going very strong. Holding it's shape. Not badly worn anywhere. Really soft and comfortable. Layer it appropriately and it suits all seasons.

Overall then, pretty exceptional value for money, and still going.

I know they keep producing some outrageous items (keeps getting them in the news I suppose) but the basics are seriously good long term value for money - you get what you pay for. Why do people have such a problem with that?? Seriously. If it's not for you then fair enough but the moaning is getting predictably dull isn't it?

PS: No, I dont work for them. I don't have an overpaid job in finance. Yes I make all my bike related purchases very carefully and have to make every penny count. Buy yourself one in their sample sale for Altura money (I wont tell anyone you did it).

posted by herohirst [59 posts]
12th September 2012 - 18:59

1 Like

...but I've got jerseys from 10 and 15 years ago, all still perfectly functional that even in those heady days cost far far less.

Using 'value for money' in defence of a company who use high price as a way of positioning themselves in the market is a wee bit silly in my opinion.

Along with many others, my problem with Rapha is related to the appropriation of cycling history in an attempt to sell clothes. They pretend to be part of it to sell stuff. It's classic, it's extremely successful, but it's still pretending. They are a fashion brand, just like all the 'established in 1870' logos splashed across the high street.

posted by crikey [262 posts]
12th September 2012 - 19:15

2 Likes

Herohirst +1
Assos is even more, and is a bit too much for me, but I don't deride people who wear it. I do use Rapha kit, but think I've only paid full price for one item. I bought a shedload of gear from a sample sale, and am waiting patiently for the weather to cool before I can use some of it. The long sleeve jersey is great, so comfortable and versatile. Paired with a base layer, it worked down to pretty cold temps in the winter, and still looks new.

Loving the Belgian version.

Last night I would have considered trading a very loud baby for a really nice bike.

posted by notfastenough [3419 posts]
12th September 2012 - 19:21

2 Likes

I like them. I think I'll buy one. I don't give two steaming plops what anyone thinks as a result. It's a Veblen product, how about you get over it, carry on cycling in your Aldi or whatever and stop complaining bout how other people spend their money.

posted by Nick T [838 posts]
12th September 2012 - 19:32

2 Likes

Nice - but I shalln;t be buying one.
I suspect they'd sell more than twice as many at half the price and make more than twice the profit.

andybwhite's picture

posted by andybwhite [206 posts]
12th September 2012 - 19:33

1 Like

Nice one Nick T! I use some Aldi clothing stuff or whatever I can get cheap...and a 4 year old ali bike. I also count my pennies and I'm fine with that. If I had the money I would probably splash out on stuff and not give two flying fcuks about what people think!

Blue skies all!

Comrade's picture

posted by Comrade [161 posts]
12th September 2012 - 20:16

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crikey wrote:
...but I've got jerseys from 10 and 15 years ago, all still perfectly functional that even in those heady days cost far far less.

Using 'value for money' in defence of a company who use high price as a way of positioning themselves in the market is a wee bit silly in my opinion.

Along with many others, my problem with Rapha is related to the appropriation of cycling history in an attempt to sell clothes. They pretend to be part of it to sell stuff. It's classic, it's extremely successful, but it's still pretending. They are a fashion brand, just like all the 'established in 1870' logos splashed across the high street.


I'm inclined to agree.

I have no problem with what you wish to buy, be it a £140 jersey, £3,000 bicycle or an expensive wristwatch from a brand connected with motorsport. If you enjoy it then that's what matters, but I don't think anyone can successfully defend a jersey like this as good value. 140 pound coins is a lot for a mass produced part-wool jumper probably made in a Chinese or Eastern European factory/sweatshop. You can't argue that the premium is for UK manufacture or for organic or fairtrade raw materials. I would say exactly the same about Fred Perry's overpriced Wiggins range.

If Rapha want to market their stuff with this retro style Euro cycling imagery that's fine too. Every company in the world uses branding to sell dreams. I think Rapha carry it off well, and I admit I'm a sucker for nice b&w imagery (for a bit of history see the original rapha). But I am more likely to give my money to companies like Howies and Patagonia who wear their hearts on their sleeves and might get up your nose as a result; but at least they are up front and we know what they stand for.

I'm not jealous, I just think they're overpriced. As for longevity, I have found that the care taken by the owner far outweighs any other factors in how long an item of clothing lasts.

Simon E's picture

posted by Simon E [2029 posts]
12th September 2012 - 20:18

2 Likes

As a newbie who didn't know whether cycling was just a passing fad for me I didn't feel justified in buying 'proper' kit, so most of what I wear on the bike comes from Aldi - mixed in with kit from my distance running days.

Is a Rapha jersey really more than 10 times better than an Aldi product?

Crosshouses's picture

posted by Crosshouses [210 posts]
12th September 2012 - 21:16

1 Like

They look great, especially the light blue, but a little too expensive although I have to admit I am tempted. At 5'9 and 145 pounds, would I be looking at a medium?

posted by paulfg42 [379 posts]
12th September 2012 - 22:49

2 Likes

I'd go small Paul. It's no hassle to change anyway if it's wrong, they've got great customer service.

Crosshouses - probably not, laws of finishing returns and all that. It is good though. The fit is spot on for me, I like the styling of a lot of their stuff and they do the job they're advertised for. I've only got 2 or 3 bits of theirs mixed in my collection but I will be getting more here and there - I find Sportwool too warm for summer anyway.

posted by Nick T [838 posts]
13th September 2012 - 6:09

2 Likes

Rapha's long sleeve jersey and the Country jersey both have full length zips, so I'm surprised they made this without one.

posted by iamelectron [112 posts]
13th September 2012 - 7:25

2 Likes

From experience unless your built like Brad and have shoulders I find these half zippers hard to get on and off.
That's why anything Rapha I buy has to have a full length zip I'm afraid.

Brummmie's picture

posted by Brummmie [56 posts]
13th September 2012 - 9:50

2 Likes

im not going to lie, i will be buying the french one, looks stunning! why the hell not.

posted by russyparkin [579 posts]
13th September 2012 - 16:58

2 Likes

I love how people reluctantly justify why they are going to buy Rapha stuff. They know it is incredibly pretentious, but they just can't resist the quality!

Team JVA put it perfectly for me:

http://internationale.teamjva.com/

posted by anonymous2011 [1 posts]
14th September 2012 - 15:40

2 Likes

I'm firmly in the camp where I am happy to pay the premium because time and again it has proved a worthy investment. I've used Rapha kit for sportives, bunch rides, solo training, and triathlon up to a half ironman. I've stayed warm, dry, and very comfortable each and every time (alright, towards the end of a 90k TT I wasn't THAT comfortable). The choice is of course yours but I've loved their stuff and I'd like to add the long sleeved jersey to my kit. Paired with a thermal under shirt and a softshell gilet it'll keep the weather off nicely.

davecochrane's picture

posted by davecochrane [103 posts]
14th September 2012 - 22:45

2 Likes

notfastenough +1

but i he brought the belgian top i keep bidding on s/s versions on Big Grin but all top end brands are in any field sport, industry, electronic etc

i like the fit of rapha jersey's i have others but do enjoy wearing the rapha tops.

Pain is weekness leaving the body

road ronin's picture

posted by road ronin [57 posts]
15th September 2012 - 6:20

3 Likes

Each to their own I guess...

Rapha are VERY, VERY GOOD at marketing, I think the head guy comes from a Branding background, they know their onions .. but the ddomsayers should realise that they do put an awful lot back into cycling and British cycling in particular..

I never pay full price for Rapha as I simply cannae justify that expense.

What I will say though as someone who owns quite a few pieces (Long Sleeve Jersey, Short Sleeve Jersey, Knee Warmers, Cap, Gilet, 2 pairs Touring Shorts, 1 pair 3/4 Fixed shorts, Essentials Wallet, Socks - Jesus, I just realised I sound like a fanboy now ...) is that most of it is VERY GOOD quality, I'd question how on earth they justify the Gilet price though TBH. Most of that was purchased for around a 1/3rd or retail price at Sample Sales.

The Touring Shorts are lovely and my LS Jersey (picked up at Sample Sale in Manny for just £35) is pure quality.

Seriously, comparing ALDI/LIDL kit (I have a LIDL gilet which is quite nice actually) is ridiculous ... It's chalk and cheese.

For anyone who balks at the price, get thee to a sample sale, you will pick up some REAL bargains.

I've said it before as well, TORM make some very good quality Sportswool jerseys, I have their stuff also, I'd recommend it to anyone.

As others have said, I have other kit too, but am very happy with my Rapha gear, buy what you like, buy what you can afford..

PS - I don't work for them ... although if they have jobs for unemployable Graphic Designers I'd be more than happy to .. Smile

Me, Myself and I

posted by phax71 [301 posts]
15th September 2012 - 8:33

2 Likes

Anita Roddick of Body Shop fame said it IIRC - "Every product we make has a story - people love stories."

I have a few bits of Rapha kit - bought years ago before bikes and clothes became so horribly expensive. I bought them because of the quality and the way they looked. I didn't want to look like a Discovery Team wannaby. I was neither young enough or thin enough to look like a neo-pro. Classic, understated, discrete, well-made and good quality suits me down to the ground.

My lightweight softshell jacket; I've twice had this repaired - free of charge - due to two crashes, I wore to work this morning. It still performed very well indeed, thankyou.

My long-sleeve jersey has needed a tiny bit of stitching done - still looks as good as it ever has. My arm and knee warmers are still going strong - both items 5yrs old.

Most of the kit Rapha make is high quality - a few pieces are the very best money can buy.

I'm not sold on nostalia, but I do appreciate performance, quality and customer service. Don't complain about it because you can't afford it or you don't like the marketing. Cycling has a heritage but most folks know shag all about it, me included. I don't pretend to know it either, I just enjoy the romantic stories for what they are - romantic stories. I also continue to enjoy the purchases I was lucky enough to make.

Why waste your time hating a clothing brand?

Cake?

posted by 515 [16 posts]
15th September 2012 - 22:04

1 Like

If I was going to stump up that kind of cash, and given our current exceptional talent - I want to wear British colours - in a discreet and tasteful way. Not another nations.

posted by diggersailing [14 posts]
17th September 2012 - 9:07

3 Likes

phax71 wrote:
...if they have jobs for unemployable Graphic Designers I'd be more than happy to .. Smile

I received an email from them recently and they are hiring - check the website - don't recall any graphic designers, although there were web devs.

Last night I would have considered trading a very loud baby for a really nice bike.

posted by notfastenough [3419 posts]
17th September 2012 - 11:07

1 Like

Road.cc I do love it when you feature Rapha - my entertainment for a Monday morning sorted....

jezza

posted by jelder [11 posts]
17th September 2012 - 12:06

1 Like