Castelli: The Future of Cycling Clothing

Guides

Castelli Winter’19 and Summer’20 Collections.

The next generation of performance-enhancing cycling clothing for men and women like the new GABBA and PERFETTO RoS family, lightweight SUPERLEGGERA JERSEY and BIBSHORTS. The protective FREE PROTEKT, which protects the hips in situations where there’s a higher likelihood of coming off, like in the chaotic opening stages of a grand tour. These are products that come from the combined know-how of Castelli and Team INEOS. BUT IT’S NOT JUST ABOUT PRO RACING.

DON’T LIMIT IT TO GRAVEL ROADS
We’ve been riding on gravel since before it was a thing. Maybe that’s why we don’t really like the word “gravel.” It’s not a separate sport, and we think that in a few years we’ll go back to just calling it cycling. You’re still riding fast and challenging yourself as well as your friends. It’s just that now your tires are more durable, bigger, and that opens up new trails and unpaved roads.

UNLIMITED is the name we’ve given to our new all-surface gear with Castelli performance technology, extra durability against things like branches that pull yarns in the jersey, and stronger fabrics in the shorts in case you slide out in loose gravel.

We’re not crazy about the word “gravel.” We love riding on it, but we don’t like the way the cycling industry acts like it’s a new sport. We prefer to just call it cycling because we’re still riding bikes, we’re still working up a sweat, we’re still having fun and we’re still beating up on our friends.

Castelli’s approach to all-surface riding is called Unlimited. Our riding now is a mixture of paved and unpaved surfaces, but we’re riding just as hard and demanding just as much from our clothing.

The Unlimited Jersey uses everything we know about moisture management, fit, shape, and the convenience of zippers that open easily and pockets that are the right shape and in the right place. But on this jersey we took the extra step of using fabrics that better resist snags from tree branches or vines that you’ll find on your favorite trail. The main body fabric is a polyester knit with good stretch and moisture management but better durability than the typical fragile fabric that’s OK on the road. Then on the sleeves, shoulders and back panel we use a stretch woven fabric that is extremely resistant, since this is the area that most often gets snagged.

Unlimited Collection from Castelli Cycling on Vimeo.

THE UNLIMITED TOUR DE FRANCE GRAVEL SHORT

Enhanced road rash protection without adding bulk or uncomfortable padding. Every cyclist knows that the hip is the most exposed part of the body. We made this short to be more durable and significantly reduce abrasions if you slide out, whether it’s on loose gravel or in the last corner when you’re going for the win at your local crit race. The protection adds minimum weight, you don’t really feel it except in very hot weather, and it’s limited to the hip panel.

This short was initially made specifically in response to a request from Chris Froome to help protect him through the first dangerous stages of the Tour de France. He wanted something to reduce road rash in case of a crash on those stages when everyone wants to be at the front and crashes are frequent.

We went back to the old trick, familiar to track riders, of wearing two pairs of shorts, knowing that Lycra® sliding on Lycra® is the best way to prevent or reduce road rash on your hip. In this case we’ve used our Vortex fabric from the Free Bibshort on the outside, which we know is already extremely durable when sliding across the pavement. Then we added an internal layer of a stretch woven fabric reinforced with a ripstop grid made from Dyneema®, the same miracle yarn used in rock climbing ropes, reinforcement in sails for the America’s Cup, and in bulletproof vests. This will help prevent the inner layer from ripping in many situations.

We put this dual-layer construction over the side panel, which gives generous coverage for the hip and thigh in the event of a crash.

While originally created to help Tour de France riders survive the first few stages of the race better, this short may come in handy when you’re riding on loose gravel or in your local criterium, or even if you just happen to fall off frequently. Beyond the protective aspect of this short, we’ve constructed it using the components and construction from our Free Aero Race 4 Bibshort, our top race bibshort that also gives remarkable comfort.

LIGHTER, COOLER AND STRAIGHT OUT OF THE FUTURE

We’ve been pushing the development of lightweight jerseys since 2007 when introducing the extremely lightweight Superleggera jersey and later the Inferno bibshort in 2011.

Our new Superleggera group of products brings innovation in fabric construction to make lighter, cooler but more comfortable jerseys and shorts for your next hot weather mountain adventure.
The 2020 SUPERLEGGERA JERSEY brings new construction engineering together in one of the most refined jerseys we’ve ever made. The goal with this jersey was to make it as light as possible (109g in size large) for hot or big climbing days, but it’s also the jersey you’ll pull out when you just want to look good. The goal with this jersey was to make it as light as possible without sacrificing transparency, sun protection and convenient features like a zippered key pocket.

We’ve brought in a new fabric that we call Oltre, which roughly translates to “beyond,” and it really goes beyond what you normally find in a jersey, with the horizontal stripes giving great breathability and stretch while providing good support for the pockets. It’s designed with a fit that is close to body but slightly more relaxed than our race jerseys.

The SUPERLEGGERA BIBSHORT features a brand-new engineered woven fabric that shaves 30% in weight for the same level of support and non-transparency. While the short saves a mere 48 grams while dry, this means it also absorbs around 30% less moisture when you’re sweating. So when you’re sweating your way up the Alpe d’Huez you’re actually saving closer to 150 grams.

We examined what a lightweight short really needs to do: it needs to hold the seat pad securely in place while otherwise adding as little weight or fabric as absolutely necessary (without being transparent, obviously), and it needs to last a season of hard use. So we engineered a brand-new fabric using a woven rather than a knit for the same level of support and non-transparency. Then we worked with the world’s leading mill to construct a gradient fabric that becomes increasingly lighter the farther down the leg it extends, with the last part weighing a mere 90 g/m2 compared to normal short fabric, which weighs around 220 g/m2.

This fabric, while being insanely light, maintains a decent durability along with excellent abrasion resistance, at least against the saddle. This short doesn’t compromise on comfort. We use our top Progetto X2 Air Seamless seat pad, the spectacular striped mesh bibs from the Free Aero Race 4 Bibshort and a flat stretch woven leg gripper to keep everything in place.

REINVENTING THE GABBA AND PERFETTO

The Perfetto and Gabba RoS products are now more waterproof, more breathable and better fitting than ever, so you can laugh in the face of foul weather.

After four generations of the Gabba and Perfetto, the foul-weather gets the biggest performance upgrade yet, “RoS” in the name signifies Rain or Shine. The emphasis is on dry-weather comfort, which is where these products really excel, but you also get near-waterproof protection if you do get caught in the rain.

Working with W.L. GORE, we developed two new and exclusive-to-Castelli GORE-TEX INFINIUMTM fabrics: a lightly brushed waterproof fabric (205 Warm) on the front panel keeps in warmth while doing a brilliant job of keeping out the cold winds, while a lighter and stretchier fabric (203 Stretch) on the back enhances breathability so you avoid heat buildup and always feel at just the right temperature. However, should you get caught in the rain or a light snow shower, it’s then that the water repellency of the GORE-TEX INFINIUMTM fabrics really comes into its own.

The Perfetto RoS products are also the perfect weight for layering. There’s no built-in insulation so you can use a light base layer for milder conditions or add a heavier thermal jersey underneath for more extreme cold.

The Perfetto RoS family features are all there: an excellent fit, an easy-sliding YKK® zipper, a long tail to protect from wheel spray, and a reflective panel on the back to add a high degree of visibility for those shorter winter days. Improvements can also be found to the two rear pockets, which are now larger to accommodate gloved hands—so no more fumbling for that energy bar or gel.

The pockets also feature a pump sleeve inside. Taped shoulder seams boost performance in the rain, while easily accessible side zipped vents ensure optimum moisture management (Perfetto RoS LS and Convertible jackets). With discreet styling that belies their racing pedigree, these are the products that belong in every serious cyclist’s wardrobe.

GABBA ROS

In 2010 Castelli introduced the Gabba jersey to the pros and forever changed the way pros dress for racing and training in the rain and cold. Thanks to the jersey’s extraordinary balance of breathability, weather protection and aero fit, every other performance cyclist soon saw the need for a Gabba in his or her wardrobe.

The best just got better. This season we’ve given the Gabba RoS jersey a major performance upgrade, making it even better in the rain while maintaining its outstanding breathability.

PERFETTO RoS LONG SLEEVE AND CONVERTIBLE JACKETS

Now even better in both the dry and the wet, the Perfetto RoS Long Sleeve Jackets gets a range of major improvements to ensure winter cycling is more comfortable than ever before.

We went back to the design table to come up with a better way to make a removable- sleeve jacket and in the process created a brilliantly versatile jacket. The zippers sit just above the elbow and cover 3/4 of the circumference of the arm. With the sleeves in place, you have Castelli’s top-performing Perfetto RoS long-sleeve jacket. Remove the sleeves and you have a real Gabba to wear with your Nano Flex arm warmers. The zippers are covered so you don’t see them from the outside or feel them from the inside.

PERFETTO RoS LIGHT AND VEST

The Perfetto Light Jersey is lighter than the Gabba but so versatile in changeable riding conditions.

The Perfetto Light started its life as a request from our pro riders who first asked for a somewhat lighter and more breathable Gabba but warmer than the Perfetto Vest. So with the Gabba as a starting point, we made the back in the water-resistant Nano Light fabric without the brushed fleece inside. This gives the piece a lot of breathabilities and keeps you from overheating inside. By using a lighter weight GORE- TEX INFINIUMTM 203 Stretch fabric (a full 25% lighter than the one used on the Gabba) on the front the overall weight was further minimized.

The new Perfetto Light is closer to a Perfetto Vest with sleeves, which makes it perfect for your spring and fall training and racing in cool conditions.

The feedback from our internal test-crew is that this piece doesn’t fully replace the Gabba or a Perfetto Vest, but it’s another arrow in your wardrobe that is ideally suited to cool temperatures, especially when it’s a dry or slight risk of light rain.

More information at: Castelli.com

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