Rapha has teased more clothing and accessories due for release in 2019, including two pairs of shoes, special edition kit and newly designed women’s chamois pads.
While it has made footwear in the past, Rapha hasn’t had shoes in its lineup for several seasons now.
That’s set to change with the release of two new pairs: Road and Explore.
The Road shoe will feature a carbon sole and ‘unique’ lace-up closure system, which Rapha claims will be ‘the world’s most comfortable road shoe’.
The name gives away the purpose with the Explore shoe, a new part of Rapha’s ever-expanding long-distance cycling range aimed at audax, randonee and bikepacking cyclists. It promises a carbon sole with an incorporated rubber tread that will combine stiffness when pedalling and grip while walking or scrambling.
New Chamois design for women
Rapha has been working with women’s pro team Canyon//SRAM for several seasons now, using athlete feedback to develop products such as the Women’s Shadow Tights.
For 2019, not only will there be a trio of new bib shorts including revamps of the Souplesse Race Bibs and the introduction of two women’s versions of the Cargo Bibs (Core and Explore), but each will feature a brand new, collection-specific chamois pad developed in collaboration with the team.
Rapha promises a raft other features, but one we’re particular interested in is the addition of a quick release magnetic clasp to the Souplesse bibs to make nature breaks that bit quicker and easier.
Special edition collections
Limited runs with unique prints, celebrating rides, events and riders has become a key part of Rapha’s design ethos and 2019 sees some legends of the sport celebrated.
Known as The Cheetah, US champion Nelson Vails took the silver medal in stunning style at the 1984 Olympics in Los Angeles, the first African-American cyclist to win an Olympic medal. The road and track cycling Olympian started off his two-wheeled career as a bike courier in New York, and continued his involvement in the sport as a commentator after retiring from racing.
Next up is a collaboration between Rapha and Paul Smith. Designed primarily for Rapha Cycling Club (RCC) members, the RCC X Paul Smith collection pays homage to the British designer with a 60’s inspired collection. Since Paul Smith is an avid cyclist and Simon Mottram, Rapha’s founder, cites him as a major influence when launching the brand in 2004, it seems like a natural development.
Marco Pantani, aka Il Pirata or The Pirate, is the inspiration behind the pink-hued jersey Rapha will re-release to celebrate the rider’s life and achievements on the anniversary of his death. Rapha will also be releasing a book that brings together stories from those who knew and were inspired by the rider who won both the Tour de France and the Giro D’Italia in 1998.
This is one for the cycle commuter or urban rider.
The Commuter Backpack features a semi-rigid base which allows the bag to stand upright when it’s deposited on the ground. This base is also fully reflective, which is designed to give a high level of visibility when worn while riding.
Rapha promises tough fabrics and ‘intelligent design’, such as a retracting buckle closure.
Stand by for availability
These products will be released throughout 2019, and as of the time of publication neither prices nor availability has been confirmed.