My day job means that I have to keep an eye on design trends, but watching all of the recent team launches and the subsequent kits that go with them is leaving me a little perplexed. It is a fine line between duty to sponsors and style, but all of the big teams appear to be heading down the same path. Black and a highlight of blue, or variation there off, seems to be the choice of the season. It is like someone found the secret formula and everyone is saying I’ll have one of those. It was bad enough with Sky and Cervelo/Garmin (I put Cervelo first because it looks more like them that Garmin), but now Leopard as well? Ok, there is a little bit more white, but we are definitely in the same territory.
That being said I like the Leopard brand overall, and actually the team design hangs together pretty well. I can’t say that I am disappointed to see the days of Fluorescent kits go out the back, and be replaced with silvers, greys, blacks…but lets face it most of us see this sport from a distance (or top down from a helicopter TV shot) and there is the distinct possibility that three of the top teams are basically all going to appear the same. If I was one of those sponsors sitting here now, I think I might have a problem with that.
That all being said, none of these are as bad as the worst kit ever, from Footon-Servetto-Fuji last year. A kit that essentially rendered their riders naked in all conditions.