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Remember Chris Froome's see through jersey at the Tour? We slip in to a Rapha prototype top that was clearly inspired by it

There's plenty of prototypes to see at Eurobike, but here's one we got to wear - a new Rapha prototype jersey that we reckon owes a fair bit to the top worn by Chris Froome in the mountain stages of this year's Tour de France.

Keen observers will have noticed the extremely lightweight and almost transparent team jersey Chris Froome was wearing on the mountain stages in the Tour de France this year. That was a specially produced jersey for Team Sky, but the prototype jersey that Rapha let us have a sneak peek (and brief ride in) clearly looks to take inspiration from it.

 

The most distinctive thing about the jersey is the see-through appearance of the lightweight mesh fabric. There's a close knit weave on the front panels and around the back, and a larger more open mesh fabric on the side panels. We had a quick spin in it while testing a Pinarello Dogma Hydro, but the ride was too short to really assess its performance. What we can say is that the the mesh panels are a very fine weave - imagine airtex woven from the finest Himalayan cotton by shaolin monks…  but more technical sort of a thing. It's also very obviously an extreme conditions jersey in the same vein as the one Froome wore in those hot mountain stages. We haven't tested the latest version of the Lightweight hot conditions jersey in the Rapha range, but Jo who wore it does have one of the original Lightweight jerseys and he reckons this is roughly half its weight. So light then.

And that's about all we know - they were relunctant to share any more details with us. One final observation is the new colourway, with the very subtle grey arm band which goies very nicely with the white or looks a bit boring - depending on your point of view. We're guessing this is one of the the colours the final jersey will be - the original Rapha.Lightweight Jersey was white too when it first came out. Oh, and one final, final observation - look out for a lot of grey in 2015, just giving  you an early heads up/warning.

David has worked on the road.cc tech team since July 2012. Previously he was editor of Bikemagic.com and before that staff writer at RCUK. He's a seasoned cyclist of all disciplines, from road to mountain biking, touring to cyclo-cross, he only wishes he had time to ride them all. He's mildly competitive, though he'll never admit it, and is a frequent road racer but is too lazy to do really well. He currently resides in the Cotswolds.

11 comments

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Nick T [913 posts] 2 years ago
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That's a properly early warning for the 2015 colour schemes.

I've got a current super-lightweight jersey, it's very very fine fabric. Too fine I reckon, to be honest. It snags really easily, and it's a bit too featherweight in comparison to the zip - the jersey conforms to the bunching of the zip rather than the other way around if you catch my drift. An even lighter one would be a nightmare.

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crikey [1252 posts] 2 years ago
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It would appear to be a jersey made of thinner than usual material. Forgive me for being underwhelmed, but even the ladies in the office choose thinner material for their shirts in the summer time...  37

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Mike_B [26 posts] 2 years ago
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I would rather be ever so slightly too hot than wear a see through jersey

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badback [302 posts] 2 years ago
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So lets get this right.In 2014/15 it's going to be blacker than black bikes, grey shirts and fluorescent shoes.

Well it's going to be easy to date photo's in 10 years time isn't it ?  36

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Leviathan [1980 posts] 2 years ago
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Surely they should have the tech to make a light meshy jersey without it being so see through. Some people must like to show of their bibs as some kind of techno fetish.

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Dr. Ko [181 posts] 2 years ago
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badback wrote:

So lets get this right.In 2014/15 it's going to be blacker than black bikes, grey shirts and fluorescent shoes.
Well it's going to be easy to date photo's in 10 years time isn't it ?  36

Yes, indeed my friend, grey will be the new Sky blue, which is more fitting anyway. So for 2014 P. S. will add vibrant flou stripes to the Rapha shoes, which will be uprated from 300 to 450 quid. He has to, I was underwhelmed and definitely not touched by his latest stuff.

Of course conservative minds can combine their flou shoes with Assos clothing:
http://innercitymobility.blogspot.de/2013/08/a-like-abc-assos-bike-cloth...

In that case the bike may contain some silver/grey accents.

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notfastenough [3682 posts] 2 years ago
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Not a bad looking jersey given that the change in colour stops it from looking quite like lingerie anymore...

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giff77 [1251 posts] 2 years ago
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Gives for an interesting tan if my memory of airtex shirts is anything to go by....

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Fixie Girl [125 posts] 2 years ago
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Nick T wrote:

That's a properly early warning for the 2015 colour schemes.

I've got a current super-lightweight jersey, it's very very fine fabric. Too fine I reckon, to be honest. It snags really easily, and it's a bit too featherweight in comparison to the zip - the jersey conforms to the bunching of the zip rather than the other way around if you catch my drift. An even lighter one would be a nightmare.

I have the womens one in the sportwool, its a bit flappy and it snags like a bitch!

I have to wear a base layer or sports bra to keep things decent which makes for a hotter ride than a standard jersey!

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cycle_physio [37 posts] 2 years ago
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I have the white and black super lightweight jersey, this looks no different. Good jersey all the same, easy snagging aside

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WolfieSmith [1323 posts] 2 years ago
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I ordered the new Rapha 'Emperors' light weight jersey this summer. It seemed to be an empty bag when it arrived - but Rapha assured me the jersey was in there and only the most special riders could see and feel it.

I've worn it out but my mates have said they can't see anything. I reckon they're just jealous.

I'm not keen on risking the "Emperors' shorts though....