Now a valued part of Europe’s gigantic Accell Group, the future is looking rosy for Nottingham’s finest at Raleigh. But with this year marking the firm’s 125th anniversary, it’s also a fine time to reflect on the brand’s history – and this is the fruit of that retrospection.
The TI-Raleigh Team Replica is based on the early Eighties trade team bikes of the glorious TI-Raleigh squad, run by legendary manager Peter Post and ridden to Tour de France victory in 1980 by Joop Zoetemelk.
However, this is a modern product that invokes the spirit of the age while addressing practical issues with modern components. The classic steel frame is made of Reynolds 525 tubing, and there’s also a chromoly fork. Meanwhile, pleasing details like a classic Cinelli quill stem and bars, a San Marco Concor Super Corsa saddle and leather toe straps provide period charm.
Stopping and moving, though, comes courtesy of Campagnolo’s current catalogue. Nobody really wants 30-year-old brakes, so the Athena calipers offer modern efficiency, while a Veloce gearset handles drivetrain duties.
One word about the polished alloy chainset – while it looks the part, we reckon the hardmen of TI-Raleigh would have balked at the idea of using a compact. Finally, wheels are Mavic Open Pro rims on Record hubs.
In terms of cold, hard specification, the £2,000 retail price might seem enough but, as with the Holdsworth replica bike brought out by Falcon last year, you’re getting not just a bike, but an official slice of retro wonderment.
Also, the fact that production is limited to 125 examples – so you genuinely will have a very rare machine – actually makes it look really rather reasonable. Just factor in an extra £49.95 to buy the matching jersey from Prendas.
Raleigh 125 years £25
The potted history of the best-known British bike brand, with a focus on the successful reign of TI-Raleigh race team between 1974 to1983.
The coffee table book is full of fantastic photos that’ll keep you engrossed for hours with just enough snippets of information to allow you to sound like an expert on the next club run.
This article was first published in the January 3 issue of Cycling Weekly. You can also read our magazines on Zinio and download from the Apple store.