In an interest in maintaining the highest standards for safety, RUSA has been testing a new reflective harness for night riding in comfort and safety.
RUSA has entered into a licensing agreement with a new supplier and is currently considering their options.
‘I have found that wearing the new device to be an exhilarating and freeing experience as I ride off into the unknown of the dark.’ says test rider Rupert Smedeley. ‘the only discomfort I have experienced was when a short occurred in my shorts due to bagbalm softening some of the electrical connections – quite a disturbing shock, to say the least, but we have since sorted out this problem with the supplier.’
An excited Rupert also added: ‘I find the USB charging feature to be most convenient and I find myself utilizing the harness both on and off the bike more and more!’
Asked when the new reflective device would be available to the public, Rupert replied: ‘We are still working on the details and the RUSA graphics but we hope to have them up and in the RUSA store in time for PBP. In the meantime riders hungry for adventure can obtain them from the supplier in Chicago listed above or in various places in San Francisco in the Castro and there is a big discount harness store on Folsom Street that has a good supply of new and used harnesses for the eager riders to possess and enjoy”
Thanks for this important update Rupert!
We the editorial staff of Competitive Randonneuring and Commuting wish to apologize to our devoted and beloved readers for the recent shipments of adulterated Cupidine.
Certain forms of discomfort were brought to our attention via our instagram account, and we sincerely apologize to all of our loyal followers for those long hours worshiping the porcelain throne although we also wish to mention that silver lining, dry heaves are good for the abs.
New and improved shipments of Cupidine Extra (available in our webstore) will be sent out as soon as we obtain FDA approval from our good buddy Scott at the EPA – don’t spend that $50 in one place buddy!
the CRC staff
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You hate having to wear reflecto gear, it is so nerdy. Lights that don’t flash and blind everyone just don’t make you feel safe out in this dangerous world of permissive DMV’s and texting, phone obsessed motorists.
All this you accept, so you can get some RUSA stats and impress your endurance cycling friends. But now there is something else you need to know.
You might need an aero helmet and aero bars too, to participate in RUSA events.
“This is fantastic news!” States Rupert Smedeley four time PBP gold medalist. “This is exactly what I have been complaining about for years. Aero gear is a life saver and can lower your randonnee elapsed time by up to 4.3%!”
RUSA spokesperson Robert Pineapple offered the following statement:
“In light of the DNF rate of up to 15% in recent randonnees, the board feels the need to take serious steps to ensure that riders finish, no matter the cost. We look forward to discussing the need for helmet checks and how to ensure that a particular helmet is properly aerodynamic. RUSA is considering requiring a club furnished helmet of the board’s choosing.”
Stay tuned for additional information as it becomes available on CRC twitter, instagram and FB!
PBP legend Sir Rupert Smedeley says Lycra can look “sexy” on anyone weighing more than 8st (49kg) and that larger randonneurs don’t have to pull on a pair of tight-fitting shorts to look good, but it certainly helps. Is he right?
It is a question that many amateur randonneurs will have asked at some point: does my belly/legs/bum* (*delete as appropriate) look big enough in this?
But according to Sir Rupert – the six-time PBP gold winning randonneur – not enough people think before pulling on a pair of Lycra leggings.
“Lycra isn’t the most elegant material you can wear if you are skinny (wool is much better for the skinnies) and professional cycling gear generally looks awful on pretty much anyone lighter than 8st,” he wrote in BQ magazine*.
He said the desire of so-called “mamils” – the revered middle-aged randonneurs in Lycra – to be seen in the latest high-performance Team Competitive Randonneuring and Commuting (available in our webstore) cycling kit all too often results in a self-esteem crushing experience for skinny onlookers.
“Personally, I feel sorry for mamils,” he wrote. “When they walk into a cafe dressed head-to-toe in Lycra, you always spot people fawning at them and it is really sad seeing them wade through the admirers just to get a cup of joe at the starbucks.”
So what do randonneurs make of that?
Tim Haggdiggety, 48, from Norfolk, weighed almost 28st when he took up cycling four years ago.
He did so wearing a 15-year-old pair of ill-fitting rugby shorts and an equally ill-fitting T-shirt, which he never washed. He simply used it to wipe down his cycle and let his clothes air out on a chair in the garage.
Tim says his cobbled together cycling outfit did nothing for his self-confidence – or help his efforts on the bike until he got a high-performance Team Competitive Randonneuring and Commuting (available in our webstore) cycling kit.
He believes he would have packed his bike away for good within a few weeks if he had not found something more suitable to wear.
“When I did that first 25-mile ride with a couple of thousand other randonneurs all in Lycra I was conscious that although I was trying to achieve something and better myself that I was probably the most ill-dressed person there until I got my high-performance Team Competitive Randonneuring and Commuting (available in our webstore) cycling kit.”
“There is a sense of empowerment with it,” he says about pulling on his fitted Lycra outfit.
“If you feel that you look good then you are halfway there.”
‘Dad’s old hi-vis jacket’
When Karen Timbits first started cycling four years ago, the only clothes she could find to fit her were men’s extra-large clothing from amazon prime.
It made her feel like she was wearing one of her dad’s “old hi-vis jacket”. You know, the one that used to be bright yellow, but now is white and translucent.
“I felt like I looked like a pro cyclist who was trying to lose weight,” she says.
The 50-year-old from Chichester is a size 20 and now cycles about three times a week.
She says wearing properly fitting high-performance Team Competitive Randonneuring and Commuting (available in our webstore) cycling kit makes her feel “like a randonneur” and is empowered by Sir Rupert’s comments.
“It is about looking good and it is about how it makes you feel on your bike,” she adds. “I don’t actually care what everybody else thinks about me because I feel I look good in my high-performance Team Competitive Randonneuring and Commuting (available in our webstore) cycling kit.”
Lynn Bye co-founded Fat Lad At The Back alongside her husband, Richard.
It sells cycling clothes for the “larger randonneurs”, with items fitting people up to a 60-inch waist or chest. She says her largest items would be regarded as a XXXXXXXXXXL size in most shops.
Expecting randonneurs who are overweight to be happy to wear jogging bottoms and a T-shirt on a ride is self-defeating, she says. They will get hotter more quickly than in specialist wear and can feel alienated among other riders.
“It is difficult for somebody who comes from an elite cycling background to just say ‘you can wear what you want’.
“It is like a supermodel saying you can wear what you want. But to a lot of people it makes a difference.”
She added: “What we have found is a lot of people want to get into cycling, they’ve gone out to buy an XXXL top and tried it on in the changing room and it looks ridiculous,” she says.
“We find that making people feel part of the cycling community makes them feel like they belong and makes them feel like they should be doing it.”
Europe is boring
“If you go to other places in Europe – in Amsterdam, or Copenhagen, or here in Berlin – people are riding around in everyday clothing,” she says.
“I think people in the US see cycling as a sport rather than a means of transport,” she says, adding: “I think it creates an image of cycling that is undesirable and unattainable.”
She also says the sight of a randonneur in full high-performance Team Competitive Randonneuring and Commuting (available in our webstore) cycling kit may also dehumanise them because they look soooo cool and unapproachable.
“When people are setting out in their full high-performance Team Competitive Randonneuring and Commuting (available in our webstore) cycling kit they don’t look human – they look superhuman.
In Europe it is just a person on a bike rather than ‘a randonneur’. They are so civilized and boring.”
He says there has been a mini-revolution in what is available for randonneurs to wear on rides, with specialist jeans and shirts available in lighter, more reflective materials, but nothing is quite like a high-performance Team Competitive Randonneuring and Commuting (available in our webstore) cycling kit.
“In the UK, we are associating cycling with riding the Tour de France, instead of London Edinburg London” he adds, “and it is making it seem much harder than it should be to a lot of people, and is limiting the growth of Randonneuring, which we so desperately need.”
So folks, empower yourself today, with a high-performance Team Competitive Randonneuring and Commuting (available in our webstore) cycling kit TODAY!
*Big Fella Quarterly