Tech round up: Beeline Velo 2 computer, Rapha Pro Team Crit and Gravel jerseys, Adidas Road Shoe BOA and two pairs of Salice sunglasses
From a fuss-free computer designed to get you from A to B to a road shoe made with recycled materials, we look at the week's most interesting product releases
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A simple cycle computer that focuses on navigation over training metrics sounds like it could have a pretty solid fan base. Beeline is hoping this is the case, and our round up starts with the UK brand's new Velo 2, a computer created for those who are less concerned with the numbers and more interested on getting to their destination on time.
The following three products are for all the clothes horses out there. We look at the latest additions to Rapha's Pro Team range, in the form of dedicated crit and gravel racing jerseys as well Adidas' latest road shoe offering, complete with a BOA fit system. Last but not least are two new pairs of shades from Italian brand Salice.
Beeline launches Velo 2 computer with the promise of "fuss-free" navigation
It’s fair to say that the best cycling computers (opens in new tab) have become pretty complex these days. The all singing, all dancing head units now include a host of performance and training features, alongside the usual metrics and navigation. If you yearn for simpler times then Beeline's Velo 2 computer might just be a good fit.
Supported by a Kickstarter campaign and focussed on “fundamental navigation” the Velo 2 is an update of the UK brand’s original model. Beeline says it now includes a “brand new navigation interface, a larger display screen and an enhanced app-based route planner”.
The circular unit is created to deliver what Beeline calls “fuss-free navigation”; type in your destination and the Velo 2 will give your three options: a fast route, a quiet route or a blend of the two. You can also choose your own route, using the computer’s ‘compass mode’. The Velo 2’s display also provides data such as speed, live ride stats and an ETA and “integrates seamlessly” with Strava according to Beeline, as well as connecting to both phone and the cloud.
Beeline says the Velo 2 is both waterproof and shockproof and it attaches to a bike’s bar or stem via a ‘twist-lock’ mounting system. Charging comes courtesy of a USB port with a claimed 10+ hours of battery life.
The Velo 2 is available now priced at £79.99. For more information visit beeline.co (opens in new tab)
We have one on test so keep an eye out for our review.
Rapha releases dedicated crit and gravel racing jerseys
Given the continued rise in popularity in both crit and gravel racing, it’s perhaps unsurprising that Rapha has decided to produce a dedicated race jersey for each discipline.
Launched as part of its Pro Team collection, which features race fit clothing designed for competitive use and hard training, the Crit and Gravel jerseys are created with performance in mind and are offered in both men's and women's versions.
The Pro Team Crit jersey (opens in new tab) has been developed with the L39ION of Los Angeles (opens in new tab) team in mind and builds on Rapha’s existing Pro Team Aero jersey. “We had the Aero Jersey,” says Harry Osborne, Rapha designer. “But we wanted to elevate it one step further and really target the high intensity of crit racing where muscle support, moisture management and aerodynamics are all really important. It was all about creating the fastest possible jersey for this very specific type of racing.”
To achieve this it’s made using aerodynamic fabrics with bonded seams, with the combination reducing overall drag as well as aiding airflow, according to Rapha. The woven fabric is also chosen for its “moisture management” properties too. Combined with a full-length zip this should make the jersey well-suited to summer riding. And while crit races are short in duration and don't require them, the jersey does have rear pockets, which should broaden its appeal.
It comes in a men's version (opens in new tab) and there's a women's Pro Team Crit jersey (opens in new tab) too.
Like the Crit Jersey, the Pro Team Gravel Jersey is also designed with elite racing in mind but with a different remit. Gravel races are often long, self-supported affairs so Rapha needed to offer plenty of storage while still allowing the jersey to deliver in hot and demanding conditions.
“Athletes wanted to be able to store everything – nutrition, tools, even tubeless repair kits – in a jersey that is aerodynamic but can be unzipped for added ventilation when racing on the hottest days,” says Osborn.
With this conundrum in mind, the jersey uses woven air-permeable fabrics in the front and under arm of the jersey, which Rapha says, allows for “efficient temperature regulation”. However, to provide support for loaded pockets - the jersey has five pockets in total - it designed a new waistband that it says delivers “pocket stability.” Other details include a ¾ zip on the men's jersey and full zip on the women's.
Both jerseys retail at £200/US$275 and are available in a range of colours. The Pro Team Crit jersey is available now and the Pro Team Gravel jersey goes on sale on June 21. For more information visit rapha.cc (opens in new tab).
Adidas creates road shoe with BOA closure and recycled materials
BOA dials have become synonymous with cycling shoes. Easy to use with the ability to fine-tune your fit mid-ride there’s plenty to like. Adidas seems to think so too, with the launch of its Parley Road Cycling BOA shoe - the first of its cycling shoes to feature a dial.
The shoe blends a sock-like fabric upper with a fiberglass-reinforced midsole to create a shoe that Adidas claims will provide “all-day comfort”. The synthetic ripstop upper is made with 50% Parley Ocean Plastic and 50% recycled polyester, while the pull-on sock is made using the brand’s Primeknit material.
“The Parley Road Shoe BOA is one of the most exciting moments in our history in cycling,” says Matthew Fielding, Adidas Director of Global Brands. “It represents our connection to cycling communities across the world, and our shared ambition to help end plastic waste.” The shoe is released as part of a Parley capsule collection that also includes a jersey and bib shorts.
The Parley Road Shoe is available in what Adidas describes as Hazy Emerald / Cloud White / Utility Green. Fans of the brand’s iconic three stripes will be glad to know that feature prominently on the shoe.
The Adidas Parley Road Shoe is priced at £170/180 euro. For more detail visit adidas.co.uk (opens in new tab)
Salice welcomes summer with two new pairs of sunglasses
Italian brand Salice makes helmets and eyewear and has released two new pairs of sunglasses for the summer months: the 026 and the 027.
We're already big fans of the Salice 022 and you can read about it in our guide to the best cycling glasses (opens in new tab).
Described by Salice as “technical and modern yet extremely versatile”, the 026 boasts a contemporary looking shape that should provide plenty of coverage against both the sun, debris and insects. Salice says that the shape has also been designed to offer full panoramic vision as well as enabling “perfect air flow to avoid annoying fogging”.
The frames are made from an impact resistant fabric called Grilamid that Salice has combined with an anti-slip rubber, to deliver what it describes as “maximum performance and reliability.” While we can’t back these claims without testing it’s encouraging that Salice offers the 026 in two sizes, a small and regular, that should help deliver a better fit across a range of face shapes and sizes.
As for the lens, each pair of glasses comes with two interchangeable offerings: mirrored and orange for differing light conditions. Each lens is anti-scratch as well as coming with a water and dust repellent guarantee.
While opting for numbers over names makes the Salice shades sound rather utilitarian, they come in nine different colours, which should make matching your kit pretty straightforward.
The 027 cuts a modern shape too, with full coverage and what Salice describes as a “multidirectional venting system” that allows the lens “to breathe”. Frame material and performance claims are the same as the 026, with nine colour options including an striking black and gold combination. The replacement lens is clear rather than orange however and the 027 isn’t offered in the smaller size.
Both the 026 and the 027 have an RRP £89.85 - which is very competitive compared to the big brands, and is something we flagged up when we reviewed the 022s.
Find out more at salice.co.uk (opens in new tab)
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Luke Friend has worked as a writer, editor and copywriter for over twenty years. Across books, magazines and websites, he's covered a broad range of topics for a range of clients including Major League Baseball, the National Trust and the NHS. He has an MA in Professional Writing from Falmouth University and is a qualified bicycle mechanic. He fell in love with cycling at an early age, partly due to watching the Tour de France on TV. He's a passionate follower of bike racing to this day as well an avid road and gravel rider.
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