By Simon Smythe
Le Col and Sir Bradley Wiggins have launched a new summer collection that celebrates the latter’s career-defining 2012, in which he won the Tour de France and Olympic gold.
Wiggins, who is becoming as well known for his fashion sense off the bike as his achievements on it, has brought his "bold style" to "the technical construction and professional insight that goes into each and every piece of Le Col clothing," according to Le Col.
The collection is split across three designs - Planche, Arc and Pursuit. Perhaps you'd expect a design commemorating the Olympic time trial victory, but that seems to have been overlooked - surely a missed opportunity since the 2020 Olympics opening ceremony takes place today in Tokyo on the same day as the Le Col by Wiggins clothing launch.
‘Planche’ of course refers to the Planche des Belles Filles in the Vosges mountains, where Wiggins first took the yellow jersey from Fabian Cancellara after finishing third on the summit. The stage was won by his Sky team-mate and eventual rival Chris Froome in a sign of things to come.
The design also pays homage to the polka-dot mountain classification jersey (taken by Froome that day).
The Arc jersey is designed, according to Le Col, to "emulate the winning sensations of those who have earned the maillot jaune with an image of the Arc de Triomphe subtly presented across the range."
As with the Planche jersey, the main element of the design is on the rear pocket - a streak of yellow (or gold) encircling the Arc de Triomphe, set in polka-dot cobbles.
Intended as a tribute to Wiggins's origins as a track rider, learning his trade at Herne Hill velodrome in south London, the Pursuit collection's design is a stylised representation of the painted lines on the track - the black datum line, the red sprinter's line and the blue stayer's line.
The pattern repeats across the rear pockets, as with the other jerseys.
The Arc and Planche collections include a Pro Aero Jersey, Sport II Jersey, socks, cap and a T-shirt, while the Pursuit collection includes a Pro Air Jersey, Sport Lightweight Jersey, socks, cap and a T-shirt. All are available in men’s and women’s sizes.
The Pro Aero jersey is priced at £145, the Pro Air jersey at £120 and the Sport II jersey at £95, while the Pro bib shorts will retail at £160, the Pro Lightweight bib shorts also at £160 and the Sport bib shorts at £130. The women's waist shorts will cost £90.
The collection is available as of today, July 23, via Le Col's website.
Simon Smythe is Cycling Weekly's senior tech writer and has been in various roles at CW since 2003. His first job was as a sub editor on the magazine following an MA in online journalism (yes, it was just after the dot-com bubble burst).
In his cycling career Simon has mostly focused on time trialling with a national medal, a few open wins and his club's 30-mile record in his palmares. These days he spends a bit more time testing road bikes, or on a tandem doing the school run with his younger son.
What's in the stable? There's a Colnago Master Olympic, a Hotta TT700, an ex-Castorama lo-pro that was ridden in the 1993 Tour de France, a Pinarello Montello, an Independent Fabrication Club Racer, a Shorter fixed winter bike and a renovated Roberts with a modern Campag groupset.
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