Ultra-breathable string vest with a close fit and synthetic fibres.
Designed to keep your body comfortable on hot days, fast-paced race conditions, or climbing mountains. However, works well on mild days or in changeable conditions when you want to layer up.
Tough-guy racer who doesn’t feel the cold but may be allergic to wool.
Short Sleeve Pro Team Jersey (with arm warmers) or Long Sleeve Pro Team Jersey. Add a Wind Jacket or Rapha Gilet for a long day out. Pro Team Jacket if it’s cold.
Buy the Short Sleeve Pro Team Base Layer »
Buy the Sleeveless Pro Team Base Layer »
Our original and arguably most versatile, 100% merino under-vest. They work well as T-Shirts too.
Multiple. If you are layering up for a cold ride, trying to stay lightweight on a mild day or simply cruising to work with a jacket on top, insulation and breathability never felt so comfortable.
Racers, commuters, tourers, paper boys… Everyone needs one or two of these.
Pretty much anything, but for example: Winter Jersey/ Long Sleeve Jersey/ Classic Softshell/ Pro Team Race Cape and so on…
Sleeveless Base Layer »
Short Sleeve Base Layer »
Long Sleeve Base Layer »
More elegant shape and cut for female riders. Has a finer feel and can be worn as a T-shirt/ casually.
Multiple (as above). Excellent for layering up on a cold ride, mild and sunny days or insulation for commuting.
Road riders, commuters, anyone who appreciates the finer things in life.
Long Sleeve Jersey/ Wind Jacket/ Long Sleeve Souplesse Jersey.
Buy the short sleeve base layer »
Buy the sleeveless base layer »
Buy the long sleeve base layer »
Designed for City riders wearing button up shirts in a lighter weight merino than the standard Merino Base Layers, but can also be used as an alternative to the Pro Team or Merino Mesh Base Layer.
Layering up for cool rides, commutes or drinking beers at the bar.
He or she who regularly commutes but needs to look good straight off the bike. Those who don’t like synthetic materials or the ‘racier’ fishnet style…
Rapha Merino Polo/ Rapha Long Sleeve Shirt/ City Rain Jacket/ any jersey.
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Made with the same merino blend as the merino base layer, and cut long in the back for a better fit on the bike. Perfect for city riding and fast-paced training.
Cool commutes and post-work high-tempo training rides.
Road riders, commuters, anyone who appreciates the finer things in life.
Hooded Rain Jacket/ Long Sleeve Pro Team Jersey/ Track Jacket
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A lighter weight and even more breathable version of the Merino Base Layer. Works exceptionally in both cold and warm weather. Does not work well as a T-shirt, however.
From the heat of summer to cooler conditions where you are layering with heavier weight jersey and/ or outer shell.
Those who heat up quickly but dislike the synthetic feel of Pro Team Base Layers. One who does high-tempo winter training and needs maximum breathability and comfort.
Long Sleeve Pro Team Jersey/ Winter Jersey/ Hardshell Jacket/ Pro Team Jacket/ Classic Jersey and Arm Warmers.
Buy the short sleeve base layer »
Buy the long sleeve base layer »
Turtle neck merino long sleeve number that works as a base-, mid-layer or alternative to a jersey under a jacket or gilet.
From cold to freezing temperatures. Perhaps also on a mild day as an outer layer/ pullover.
A keen winter rider, who rides whatever the weather. Also, someone who really feels the cold.
LS Brevet Jersey/ Hardshell Jacket/ Softshell Gilet / Rain Jacket.
Buy the base layer »
Turtle neck merino long sleeve number with women’s specific tailoring. Works as a base- or mid-layer, or as alternative to a jersey under a jacket or gilet.
From cold to freezing temperatures. Perhaps also on a mild day as an outer layer/ pullover.
A rider who feels the cold more than most, or someone who puts in long miles in the winter months.
Women’s Long Sleeve Brevet Jersey & Gilet/ Connie Carpenter Jersey/ Women’s Souplesse Jacket / Women’s Classic Softshell Jacket.
Buy the base layer »
Extremely insulating base layer for extremely foul weather, long-cut sleeves with thumb loops and a close-fitting hood give absolute insulation.
Freezing, Arctic, ‘post-apocalyptic’.
Anyone who knows the true meaning of winter.
(Deep) Winter Collar/ Long Sleeve Jersey/ Hardshell Jacket/ Pro Team Race Cape/ Rain Jacket and Winter Glove System.
Buy the base layer »
The Elite Women’s field was the first of the evening’s main events. The kit selection was generally the same apart from a few changes in teams and sponsors. This race continues to serve as a space for racers and sponsors alike to roll out their new wares. Both Gabby Durrin (Neon Velo) and Meredith Miller (Noosa Yoghurt) — contenders in their own right — sported new clothing to the start line.
However, once the racing was underway it seemed to be more of the same — the stars and stripes jersey of National Champion Katie Compton were off in their familiar fever pitch. But wait. Could it be? With attacks from fan favorite Katerina Nash and her LUNA teammate — newly crowned Cross Country Mountain Bike World Champion Catherine Pendrel — the sharp end of the race was the excitement that the neon lights of Vegas demanded. Then a crash, a split in the field and Nash, Miller and Compton were away for the remainder of the race.
Surprise came in the final meters when Meredith Miller, a once renowned road sprinter, took advantage of those skills and sprung ahead of Nash and Compton for the win. She was all smiles and thrust her fist in the air for the well deserve win of the evening.
The Elite Men’s race was a thing of patience and beauty. Each nation that was represented took a turn at the front in something akin to a UN Summit. Even the nation of Boulder, Colorado let their promising young racer, Allen Krughoff, light up the action at the front of the race. But when it came down to business, the Euro Pro’s were just too good…
As the lap counter started to dwindle, the speeds at the front of the race started to pick up. The fresh-faced American stars of our favorite sport were removed from the action. Except for one man.
If Jeremy Powers has learned anything in the past few years racing with his European counterparts it is that patience pays off. Well, that, and waiting long enough to be the instigator himself. With three laps to go Powers charged up and over the slight rise in the final straightaway across the finish and eliminated all but former World Champion Sven Nys (Crelan-AA Drink) and last year’s World Cup overall winner Lars van der Haar (Giant-Shimano). From there it was up to the two Europeans to put their heads down (presumably to avoid the spraying beer) and make it their race.
In the end Nys would take his second Cross Vegas win while Jeremy Powers (Aspire Racing) would bring home the bronze medal, wow the fans of cyclocross and at the same time debut his new team livery (designed by guess who) for the season.
If this is to be our indicator for the season to come, it is a going to be a great one. With a new team — Aspire Racing — and a fresh National Championship jersey to get muddy, the time is right for Jeremy Powers to continue his dominance and growth in the sport of cyclocross.
Read more about the 2014 Rapha Cross season »]]>
A brevet is a long distance ride, ranging from around 200km to 1,500km, with riders required to have a brevet card stamped by officials at waypoints. It’s not a race (for most, at least) and the rewards for riding are exactly the same as the rewards for riding any distance – the feeling of accomplishment, the camaraderie, the fitness and the views.
It’s the heightened demands of brevet riding that have informed the Women’s Brevet Jersey and Gilet. The first is the quest for visibility – because of the lengths of the rides, and the volume of riding one undertakes to prepare for a brevet, riders will often find themselves riding on remote roads in relative darkness. This is why two bright stripes adorn the jersey’s chest, and hi-viz details adorn the cuffs. These elements will make the most of ambient light and the light from car headlights, helping other road users to see you.
The jersey’s accompanying gilet is the most eye-catching hi-viz element of the pairing. With it’s own mesh-lined, zippered storage compartment above the jersey’s three cargo pockets, the gilet will always be on hand for when the light and temperatures drop. Made from a very bright, windproof fabric, the gilet has two hi-viz stripes that match the jersey, and a reflective Rapha logo on its tail. As with all Rapha jackets, the zipper is offset for ease of layering.
With a cut-off time of 90 hours, Paris-Brest-Paris forced us to re-learn some basic lessons about bike riding – when to eat, how to stay warm, and how to be comfortable on a bike for that length of time. You might find it necessary to carry slightly more than you’re used to. To this end, the Women’s Brevet Jersey has three spacious rear pockets, a zippered gilet compartment, and a valuables pocket.
For warmth and protection, we turned to an old favourite: merino-blend Sportwool™, which manages to both insulate and be breathable. It also has a gentle finish against the skin, which might not seem like a big deal when you first try the jersey on, but ends up making a monumental difference at the end of a long day.
The stories that came back from Paris-Brest-Paris were breath-taking – including our Head of Brand momentarily hallucinating from sleep deprivation – and have been retold on countless rides since. We hope that you get the chance to create your own stories and share them with us.
Emma Osenton, route designer:
The English obsession with the weather couldn’t have been stronger than in the days leading up to the Manchester to London Challenge, endless messages of ‘What are you wearing?’ bouncing between competitors and staff. With good reason mind, as September can throw anything from icy blasts and freezing rain to blazing sunshine and golden light. We awoke to thick mist, the Lowryesque redbrick terraces held still and quiet in a blanket fog. Nothing beats the sensation of setting off into the unknown. sunlight began to crack through the morning cloud as we made our way into the Peaks. Soon a fierce sun heated the day, golden light flooding field and fell.
We rode past recently harvested lands, yellow corn stubs shaven by an army of machines as we rode along on ours. Spirits were high, with some riders deep in thought as the ride went on and others chatting gently, sharing fears over the hiss of freehubs followed by breathy climbs.
Blazing sun drenched crumbling mansions stocked high with food. I kept it brief; the pain is the same if you ride fast or slow, one is just shorter. I knew my hands and back would stiffen, little flutters of muscle will all remind me where they are, not long enough to stop me. Rolling England distracts the mind — it’s a nation of farmers, large and small. Eggs by the dozen and watercress by the bunch flicker past my eyes, before a sea of London lights play with a tired, caffeine-fuelled brain. It was as if the weather gods, whoever they may be, had blessed us with a stunning day. See you next year for round two. The North did win, right?
Simon Mottram, Rapha CEO:
220 miles is a long way. That we could all ride from misty Manchester, over the peaks and right through the heart of England in a single day was hard to imagine and wonderful to experience.
Around 9pm one of my friends got chatting to a bloke on a mountain bike at some traffic lights in Tottenham:
“Good ride?” he said.
“Amazing” my friend responded “but quite far”.
“How far have you been then?”
“From Manchester. We left this morning.”
“F*** off! I’m from Manchester and that’s impossible!”
My friend showed him his Garmin and realisation dawned for both of them. This had been a big day.
220 miles is a long way in a day even if you are a trained endurance athlete. But very few of the Manchester to London riders yesterday had ever ridden anything like that distance. That almost all of them made it showed incredible courage and determination. But more than that I think it showed a wonderful ambition, totally in keeping with the ride’s cause: Ambitious about Autism. 220 miles may be a long way to ride in a day, but it was totally worth it.
Manchester to London 2014 from RAPHA on Vimeo.]]>
South Time: 15:24:23
North Time: 15:27:18
|Cecily Hamilton Baillie||57||Female||16:36:17||South|
With subjects ranging from Barack Obama to the Yangtze River, Nadav Kander’s photography is brooding and beguiling. Born in Israel and raised in South Africa, he is an artist who has garnered plaudits and awards worldwide. This week, he launches a new body of work, Dust, a series of images capturing the ruined cities of the Cold War, on the border between Kazakhstan and Russia. We stepped inside his North London studio to meet him, and began by discussing one of his most prized works, a steel road bike built by Dario Pegoretti.
With a custom bike the paint job can often be difficult. How did you arrive at yours?
I took a picture of Dario and his bikes and made a template of the frame. I tried again and again but it’s hard to make a bike look good, as it’s such an odd shape. And that was before I put the black components on. I wanted the names [of his wife and children] on the top tube. And Dario wanted to use a colour [yellow] that he’d seen in my Yangtze photography.
I understand you were a motorcyclist when you were younger?
I had a Triumph T110 and a Motto Guzzi… until I came off and smashed my knee up. Now I have one leg much stronger than the other. Oddly, I only get the pain of lactic acid in the stronger leg and when I get about 60km into a ride, my knee starts to swell and my body gets uncomfortable from the unevenness.
Was the accident how you came to develop a love for cycling?
I suppose, going right back, what I love about cycling is the same thing I love about manual cameras. I love just how beautifully bikes are made, the gearing, the metal-on-metal etc. Like the rings of the camera and the click of the shutter, I love working on them and with them. But I also love the amazing R&D, the way bikes slice through the air, how smooth they are.
The road bike is the most amazing mode of transport. When you can ride 100 miles and have a sociable time, I love those rides. When it starts to get a bit competitive, that’s when I drop off. I prefer the coffee group. As for the pain and suffering, when I’ve climbed Mont Ventoux or Alpe d’Huez, I’ve been really proud of myself. It’s a great feeling to know that, whatever the hill, you can do it. I might not be as quick as Pantani but I’ll do it.
And what about riding in the city?
I ride everywhere and hardly use the car. For meetings around town, I just change my shoes and jump on the bike.
You’ve been based in London for a long time. Why here?
The reason I came is because this was the best place to soak up art, and especially photography. And it still is because the British have always put on a pedestal, always embraced, the new. Anything original, be it the best young cellist, theatre designer or photographer, it’s celebrated in this city. It’s so vibrant, I don’t know another city like it.
You are renowned for your portraits. Do you need to be sympathetic to your subjects?
No, I don’t think I’m sympathetic when I take a portrait. And I don’t particularly get to know my subjects either.
Does landscape work, like the Yangtze or your new series, Dust, require a different approach to portraiture?
All my landscape is about humanness, how it feels to be human. I never do landscape for nature’s sake, or even landscape’s sake. It’s always about the palm print of man, how we interact with our surroundings; it’s where man touches nature that I’m interested in.
How do you choose your subjects?
There has to be something that attracts you to a place. In the case of Dust, we’re talking about cities that were kept secret for 30 years during the Cold War. That’s the attraction, I want to see what’s so secret, to show the darkness of that part of man’s history. Once I’m there, all I’m concerned about are the photogenic qualities of the place. Portraiture is no different. All I’m looking for is how to make an interesting picture.
Francis Bacon was a great example; he gave away so little but you feel so much. I try not to tell you too much but make you interested enough to fill in the gaps. Someone who is overlit and smiling is incredibly boring, but someone underlit, perhaps half turning away, you start to fill in the emotions, like melancholy, vulnerability, depression, happiness or whatever. That’s up to the viewer and landscape is no different. You can imbue a landscape with a lot of who you are.
When shooting on location, do you have an idea of what you’ll photograph each day?
I went for about 18 days each time [five trips over two years]. I just really get in a zone and work extremely hard, I’m possessed by it. I chose different points along the river, asked people if there was anything interesting nearby, then went to find it. It’s about travelling around and picking up on the atmosphere, which in some parts of China I found strange, the people there seem to just… exist.
Do you think that, as a photographer, travelling keeps you more versatile?
When I do a long stint in the studio I can’t wait to get out and mix it up. A lot of people ask how I do so many different things and I don’t really know. Because I’m the common denominator, it’s not that different whatever I’m doing.
I read you got arrested in Kazakhstan while shooting Dust?
Yeah, both times. That’s why I didn’t go a third time.
There’s one picture that actually looks like a nuclear blast.
Yes that was the Polygon, which was a Russian nuclear test site, which I visited at the end of the last day. You can only spend one day at a time there as it’s still dangerous. I had a Geiger counter with me and once it makes a continual noise you must back away, until it’s clicking again.
I imagine that’s quite a disturbing noise in itself?
It is and as I say in the foreword of the book, you’re concentrating on the look of the photograph, but you’re reminded of how dark this place is by the clicking of the Geiger counter. It’s a weird place.
You seem to document a lot of decay in these places?
The ruin is really interesting, not that I knew it beforehand. I’ve only looked up ruins and seen their significance in the context of art afterwards, which is how I usually work. I don’t do too much research beforehand. The same is true with people, I never look up what people have done before I photograph them, I only look at their faces in pictures. Ruins lend gravitas to a landscape, a sense of the past and the decay reminds us of our own mortality.
Not judging subjects by their achievements must be difficult, Barack Obama for example?
Yes of course, you know so much about him already. But I only look at people’s pictures so I can see how I might think of how to light them. I’m not interested in whether they studied at Harvard, I’m not looking for things to talk about. My homework is more in their face than in what they’ve done. I’m not a fan of retouching images to soften skin or anything like that. You can see a person’s history in their face.
Dust by Nadav Kander runs from 10th September until 11th October at the Flowers Gallery in London (flowersgallery.com). The accompanying Monograph, and featuring an essay by Will Self, is published by Hatje Cantz.
Nadav’s work will also feature at the upcoming show at the Barbican – Constructing Worlds: Photography and Architecture in the Modern Age – between 25 September 2014 and 11 January 2015.]]>
For the first of our new series of photo features, Rapha visited Gloucester and discovered a town winning the battle to hold onto its identity and a community that occupies an important place in American fishing – and literary – history.
“A soft fall rain slips down through the trees and the smell of the ocean is so strong that it can almost be licked off the air. Trucks rumble along Rogers Street and men in t-shirts stained with fish blood shout to each other from the decks of boats. Beneath them the ocean swells up against the black pilings and sucks back down to the barnacles. Beer cans and old pieces of styrofoam rise and fall and pools of spilled diesel fuel undulate like huge iridescent jellyfish. The boats rock and creak against their ropes and seagulls complain and hunker down and complain some more.”
– From The Perfect Storm, by Sebastian Junger
The town of Gloucester, Massachusetts, is perhaps best known as the port from which the Andrea Gail, the doomed ‘swordboat’ in Sebastian Junger’s bestseller The Perfect Storm, set sail on its final voyage. It is a town where, more than two decades and one George Clooney blockbuster later, fishermen still head for the Grand Banks, off the coast of Nova Scotia, to do battle with the ocean, and where they still need to venture ever further afield to remain competitive in a globalised fishing industry. The rewards can be great but the price can be high: in its 350-year history more than 10,000 Gloucestermen have been lost to the Atlantic.
The Perfect Storm announced Junger as a literary star, a defining work of adventure-reportage as important to the genre as Jon Krakauer’s Into Thin Air. This corner of Massachusetts already had a literary pedigree, of course, for it was from nearby Nantucket that Herman Melville slipped the mooring ropes and sent Captain Ahab in pursuit of the great whale.
Once, there was barely a family in Gloucester that did not boast a healthy complement of fishermen; now, only 20% of Gloucester residents have a direct connection to the industry. Lobsters have replaced swordfish as the most profitable catch, though offshore fishing remains as dangerous a trade as it does a fickle one; according to the U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics, the rate of fatalities among fishermen is nearly 50 times the U.S. national average.
Among those waiting for the lobsters when they land in port is Joe Ciaramitaro, a fish dealer who sorts these pincered monsters by hand (the largest lobster ever caught, in 1977, was a 20-pounder landed off Nova Scotia) out of a wooden warehouse on the far side of Gloucester’s docks. Standing at the waterside door you can see the houses of Gloucester’s coastline – wooden and pastel – scattered across the hills. You can also see the buildings of Captain Joe and Sons Wholesale Lobster Co.’s competitors: Cape Seafoods Inc., the North Atlantic Fish Company and Mortillaro’s Lobster Co.
Captain Joe and his cousin run the warehouse although, as the former explains, he isn’t the original Captain Joe but rather his grandson, and thus has no right to the epithet, despite seemingly every soul in Gloucester referring to him as Captain Joe, or simply ‘The Captain’.
Boats leave the harbour before dawn. Once out on the water they lay a line of lobster pots on the seabed, with a buoy at one end to allow the boat to collect them the next day. After collection, the boats head back to the docks, removing the clawed beasts from the cages and cuffing them with elastic bands. When the boats arrive, Joe and his cousin haul barrels of live lobsters into the warehouse and on to the scales, making a note of the weight of the catch. Then they pick the crustaceans out of the barrels, judge their size by eye, and toss each one into corresponding plastic tanks.
In between times, Joe and his cousin spend a large part of their day waiting. Joe sits on the tailgate of his pick-up, away from the constant drone of the pump that oxygenates the tanks. He spends hours like this and, he says, the waiting is what makes the job such a killer.
So he put the time to good use. Back in the dial-up days before the World Wide Web mutated into the all-seeing algorithmic eye of today’s internet, a thread started by Joe on a local-interest message board became so popular that local folk read it in their thousands, contributing stories and images of Gloucester’s fishing past.
Today he manages and edits Good Morning Gloucester, the blog that grew out of that thread, from his smartphone. This site, he explains, is wrapped up in the collapse of the fishing industry. “When I started out here, everyone in Gloucester either worked in the fishing industry or was related to someone in the fishing industry. There was no escaping it, it was our identity.” What followed is a variation on the story of many small fishing towns in America: trawler nets industrialised fishing methods, forcing smaller crews out of business. And so the next generation moved out of the town to find office jobs and further education.
“Lobstering is still very strong,” explains Joe, “partly because the fishing industry has taken a lot of measures over the years to protect stocks, with conservation orders and whatnot. The fishing industry is different because of the technology used to track fish – it’s really industrial, maybe more than people realise. The technology got way out in front of what the seas could sustain.”
“They have nets that can traverse the contours of the ocean so there’s no place for the fish to hide. There used to be tons of guys going out and working the ocean for a catch, and now there’s just a tiny fraction of those guys left.” He points to a stack of lobster pots. “I guess guys who lobster are lucky that lobsters are tough little bastards that know how to hide behind a rock.”
“What you should understand is that it wasn’t so long ago that you could just go out to sea on a boat and work as hard as you wanted to work. Talk about independent spirit, you chose where and when you wanted to go, and who with and for how long. Now you got to get the right permits, and the government controls a lot of stuff… but we still have that spirit.”
A boat pulls up to the warehouse and Joe trots over to the electric winch. Two members of the boat’s three-man crew wear Red Sox jerseys. While he sorts through the lobster, Joe holds one up to the light. It’s limp. Joe gives it a slight shake for signs of life, swishes it around in the water of a tank and then presents it to one of the crew, who does the same over again. When all are convinced that the lobster is dead, it is taken back on to the boat and laid on a bench.
Resuming his position on the tailgate with the sort of stillness only practised by people who have physically demanding jobs, Joe says, “So, yeah, the blog.”
“I found a forum on the internet for people who missed the old Gloucester. Some still lived here, some had moved away. I started the thread [also called Good Morning Gloucester] and I posted a photo from the docks every day, and all these people were so interested in seeing what was happening down on the dock. This was before Facebook, and blogging was still a new thing.”
Joe claims that, today, Good Morning Gloucester outperforms the local newspaper in terms of readership. “This town is beloved. It’s not just a feeder town for Boston, with people hopping on a train and commuting to the city – and there aren’t many other towns around here that can make that boast.”
A drive-by tour of Gloucester takes in the Gorton’s factory, manufacturers of ‘crunchy breaded fish sticks’, the artists’ colony at Rocky Neck, and the self-consciously quaint houses of Landsville and Rockport. The town radiates away from the docks, looking down at its old industry.
“If you grew up here, and you never really went away, you never learn to appreciate everything that we have here, the beaches, the bars, the boating, all this stuff. You go away to college or something, and you’re in this concrete mess someplace else, and you’re like, holy crap, I can’t believe how special that place is.”
The Richards Sachs – House Industries show opened at the Cycle Club NYC to a crowd of Sachs addicts overflowing into the streets. King (of frame building) Richard, flanked by his elite cyclocross team, made their way along the showroom floor. For the remainder of the month, Richard Sachs has, through the careful curation of House Industries, lent his personal collection of cycling ephemera as well as racing bicycles to the Club.
You may at first want to classify Richard Sachs as that framebuilder. His long lead times, attention to detail and one-colour paint schemes, put him into a special category. However, before you go ahead and categorize him as one of the precious ones – the ones that build artful bikes that are meant to be looked at more than ridden – let us consider the racing heritage that has brought him to this point.
This is where House Industries comes in to play. When we spoke to Richard early last month, Rich Roat and the crew from House had been picking through the Sachs collection. Culling photographs and combining them with period specific race jerseys was just one of their jobs when building out the retrospective on the man. Which is why, when asked, Richard Sachs had no answer to the question “what will we see at this show?”
The answer is now clear and all encompassing – the legacy that is Richard Sachs racing is on full display. There are race numbers and licenses, holy wool jerseys, handlebar tape from racing bikes, and early portraits of Richard with his machines. However, his answer to the question “what can we expect?” was so much more. “The future” was his response, and with that simple answer he supplies us with everything that we need to know — Richard Sachs is here to stay.
The Richard Sachs exhibition will be on display until September 21st at the Rapha Cycle Club NYC – 64 Gansevoort Street, New York NY 10014.]]>
Thanks to John for taking the time to compile it.]]>
As we launch Peter’s special edition cap, we took the opportunity to speak to him about his near misses, the finale of this year’s edition, and his favourite champion from the race’s history. Peter Kennaugh is currently riding as one of Chris Froome’s key domestiques in Spain, so we’ve taken this chance to republish Tom Southam’s in-depth interview from last year, given just three days after Peter finshed his first three-week race.
Read Tom Southam’s interview with Peter Kennaugh »
Your history in the senior race goes back to 2008, when you got second aged just 19. Since then, you’ve had an incredible run of results – does this make winning the jersey sweeter, or did you feel like it was just a matter of time?
Yes, it definitely makes the win the more special. I have been on the podium so many times, always watching another rider pulling on the jersey and then seeing him wear it for the whole year. It was always hard to take, and the fact that I’ve been so close before makes this win even more meaningful to me. I think I had only just come to terms with the fact that I might not ever win the nationals.
The finale of the race was very tense, and excellent to watch. What were you thinking about when in the last few miles as you rode in with Ben Swift? When did you know you’d won?
I was mainly thinking about the finish in 2009 – I knew I had to wait for Swifty to take the sprint up and I knew I had to start my sprint as late as possible if I stood a chance of winning. The sprint is downhill and once you hit your max speed on the front you can’t give anymore. I waited for Swifty to reach this moment, then I came out of his slipstream with only 50 metres to go.
I couldn’t believe it when I started to come around him, as I thought as soon as I came up next to him he would kick again and beat me easily. I was in a state of disbelief – to beat a sprinter in a sprint!
Aside from this year, which was your favourite national championship race? Why?
It’s hard to say because they are all tinged with a bit of disappointment. However the first nationals in 2008 [when Peter, aged just 19, took second to Olympian Rob Hayles] has to be a good memory – it was a great result to get at that age. 2009 was special also. The finish in Abergavenny is always packed with spectators, and my brother put in a great performance in the junior race, only narrowly missing out on the title.
Of all the riders to wear the jersey, who is your favourite?
Steve Joughin. He won the 1984 nationals on the Isle of Man. A Manxman winning in front of his home crowd? I don’t think there’s anyway to top that.
[Steve Joughin was only a couple of months younger than Peter when he took his title in 1984, and went on to win the race again in 1988. His book, Pocket Rocket, is available in all good book stores.]]]>