CHPT3, the brainchild of former pro cyclist David Millar, has collaborated with Garmin to create a limited edition kit, produced "for women, by women."
CHPT3's Biarritz collection was conjured up by the brand's head of design, Ella Tomkins, and it says that the range is "ready to prove that cycling kit can be femininely stylish, technical and sustainable."
The range - comprising of women's cycling shorts (non bib), a cycling jersey and two base layers - is named after the Basque country town in France, which the brand says is "a unique town with style, attitude and made famous by royalty and the elite."
At Cycling Weekly, we do wonder if the jersey's construction will be equally selective about who it fits, especially since chest sizes don't always increase uniformly in line with the rest of the upper body.
For me, the design is slightly reminiscent of those very cute camisole tops and summer dresses that look great on the hanger but only suit women who have exactly the right ratio of 'chest to rest', with proportinally larger busts tending to fail to be encapsualted in the 'boob pocket'. However, I did note in the editorial for our recent women's issue that female cyclists are not a homogenous group; we wouldn't expect a range of men's kit to appeal to all male cyclists, either.
CHPT3 sent us images of the kit on a range of body shapes, and commenting in the fit, Tomkins told us: "We have tried and tested this kit on different body shapes, they all looked really great."
The product marketing images (above) are, arguably, reminiscent of male gaze influenced approaches used elsewhere in women's fashion, which many brands - Assos being a prime example - have moved away from. However, there are some more on-the-bike focused images, too (below).
Describing the range, CHTP3's press release says that the kit aims to "inspire, empower and motivate" riders, stating: "The paradigm of sportswear is changing. Slowly but surely, more female voices are emerging, trailblazing what it means to excel in a world that has been to this point a male dominated space. Our Head of Design, Ella Tomkins, is one of them. This 3-piece capsule is a material manifestation of her belief that cycling kit can be more."
Aiming to channel "femininity... not in stereotypical colours or patterns," the collection uses "beautiful materials, the finest trims and carefully chosen accessories... woven together in Italy to create something that does not compromise style for performance, or vice versa."
The range, CHPT3 says, uses "stripes creating the effect of a ‘cinching waist’ without changing the cut of the jersey or shorts."
The waist shorts (£149/$205) come with a 60mm wide hem panel with a silicone gripper print and women's Elastic Interface pad, and use a wide waistband inspired by yoga apparel, with 65% of the material coming from Recycled Polyamide (PA) and 35% Elastane (EA).
The jersey (£149/$205) is made from 85% recycled PA and 15% EA and comes with UV protection, it weighs 115g and comes with three pockets.
There are two base layer designs (£55/$75), and both come with a "sanitized antimicrobial finish to eliminate odour."
Sizes range from XS to XXL, you can see the kit here. (opens in new tab)
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Michelle Arthurs-Brennan is a traditional journalist by trade, having begun her career working for a local newspaper, where highlights included interviewing a very irate Freddie Star (and an even more irate theatre owner), as well as 'the one about the stolen chickens'.
Previous to joining the Cycling Weekly team, Michelle was Editor at Total Women's Cycling. She joined CW as an 'SEO Analyst', but couldn't keep her nose out of journalism and in the spreadsheets, eventually taking on the role of Tech Editor before her latest appointment as Digital Editor.
Michelle is a road racer who also enjoys track riding and the occasional time trial, though dabbles in off-road riding too (either on a mountain bike, or a 'gravel bike'). She is passionate about supporting grassroots women's racing and founded the women's road race team 1904rt.
Michelle is on maternity leave from July 8 2022, until April 2023.
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