Wednesday, July 12, 2006

The Best Cycling Jersey Ever, Finale

Yesterday's post on the best cycling jersey of all-time generated a lot of feedback.

Here are some jerseys that garnered "honorable mention", followed by the jersey determined by Tuffy's panel of judges to be the "Best Cycling Jersey Ever".

Honorable Mention #1: Faema (1960s; suggested by Skidsy McSkids)
According to Skidsy, this is the most stylish of all the jerseys worn by the great Eddy Merckx. What really sets the Faema jersey off is its simplicity / intricacy juxtaposition in the classic red on white color adorned with the cool "Faema" font on the chest.
Honorable Mention #2: Vuelta "Fishy" Sprinter's Jersey (present; suggested by VelociPete)
Excuse me while I vomit. Which page of the Primal Wear catalog did the Vuelta organizers find this thing? Thor Hushovd (pictured below) should sue for slandering his image.

Honorable Mention #3: Tour de France KOM Jersey (1975-present; suggested by Lunatic Biker)
Easily one of the most easily recognizable jerseys around. Red polka-dots on white? KOM, for sure! This jersey nearly made the original Top 5.
Honorable Mention #4: Astana-Wurth (June 29-30, 2006; suggested by Plan B)
A jersey famous for being worn for only two days: June 29-30, 2006. June 30 is also known as the date the Astana-Wurth team was disqualified from the Tour de France. The team had just unveiled its new kit after former title sponsor Liberty-Seguros pulled support earlier in the year. These kits won't be worn again, either, as Wurth has now pulled its support, too.

Honorable Mention #5: Cinzano (1970s)
It's easy to dismiss this jersey as one simply made famous by a movie ("Breaking Away"). Such dismissals don't give justice to the great style of this kit, however. A blue/red rectangle diagonally separated and adorned with a stylish logo on a black jersey is nothing to take lightly. This is a great jersey.

Honorable Mention #6: Cutters (1970s; suggested by Skibby)
The other jersey made famous by "Breaking Away" is the simple cotton t-shirts worn by the little engines that could, the Cutters. Not stylish, not original and not special, but definitely classic.
Honorable Mention #7: 7-Eleven (1980s)
The team that put American professional cycling on the map. The 7-Eleven jersey represents a nice mix of classic jersey styling with the influx of sponsorship logos that occurred in the 1980s. Plus, this jersey helped Bob Roll to write not one but two books based on his experiences with this team. Well done, Bob!
Honorable Mention #8: Castorama (1989)
Any jersey that makes you look as if you are wearing overalls is a winner! Plus, Frenchman Laurent Fignon wore this kit while losing the 1989 Tour by 8 seconds to Greg LeMond. Double honorable mention goes to Fignon's 1984 Systeme U kit, as well. Honorable Mention #9: La Vie Claire
Like a Mondrian painting set to lycra, the La Vie Claire jersey is one-of-a-kind. The jersey also gets special mention because it was the kit worn by Tour greats Bernard Hinault and Greg LeMond in 1985 when the former double-crossed the latter and reneged on a promise to be a loyal domestique. See if you can figure that sentence out!
Honorable Mention #10: T-Mobile (2004-present)
The only truly classic kit in the modern peloton. T-Mobile's jersey has remained relatively unchanged since they evolved from Team Telekom to T-Mobile in 2004 -- and that's part of what makes for a classic uniform. When you think of the New York Yankees, the Detroit Red Wings, Penn State University, what do you think of? You think of unchanged uniforms that are simple in styling. T-Mobile, whether you like the hot pink or not, possesses a kit that will stand the test of time.

And the winner of the title, "Best Cycling Jersey Ever" is...

Wait for it...

wait for it...

Winner: Domina-Vacanze (2003)
Ultimately, what puts the Domina-Vacanze kit of 2003 on a level above all others is two factors. First, the aggressive and unique style of this zebra-like jersey is like nothing else ever unveiled upon the peloton, and credit has to be given to those who push the envelope. Secondly, the most notable rider on the 2003 Domina-Vacanze team was the great "Super" Mario Cipollini. This fact is important because the daring kit matches the daring personality who wore it -- this kit is inextricably linked with Cipollini himself and vice-versa, a reality that elevates this jersey to a level unequaled by all others. Well done, Domina-Vacanze!


Blogger AdamB said...

Nah, I meant the Wurth-less Team Astana. It's gonna be the scariest jersey of all time.

What about the Dark Side of the Moon jersey? You're not cool until you have one of those--full-zip!

Wed Jul 12, 01:24:00 PM 2006

Blogger AdamB said...

I also like the Georgetown University jersey.

Wed Jul 12, 01:46:00 PM 2006

Blogger Lunatic Biker said...

Still sad that Vino wasn't able to compete.

Thu Jul 13, 06:02:00 AM 2006

Blogger Mr.Cybrarian said...

Fignon was not with Castorama in 1989. He was with Super U. He did not join Castorama until 1990.

Fri Aug 21, 09:14:00 AM 2009


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