If you’ve been on an “old man’s ride” AKA an British sportive then you’ll no doubt have noticed how well Rapha, the manufacturers of performance cycle apparel have been doing over the last year or two. The popular brand adorned by all too many of the sportive “peloton” does have me throwing up in my mouth from time to time but I still buy it because it’s very good and fits me perfectly.
Aside from being good quality I recently rode five and half hours of the Dragon sportive in wales with some nasty road rash after a fairly pacey crash with their gear hanging off me. The stinging in my legs, arms and body was nothing compared to the thoughts I was having about the cost of replacing my kit which included:
- Team rain jacket £190
- Team country jersey £105
- Arm Warmers £25
- Giro helmet £79
- Assos bibs shorts £125
- Sidi shoes £230
I’ve only had the items by Rapha repaired to date but I know that Assos also provide crash repairs, they’re just not as forthcoming about their service.
Anyway after a quick phone call with a very well spoken chap at Rapha HQ to ask how it all works I was told that I just needed to wash all the kit (blood stains and sweat aren’t pleasant for the seamstress's to work on apparently), stick it in a bag and wait for the results. If they were unable to repair the items they would let me know and send them back to me.
The pics don’t really show the damage in all their glory but you get the idea. The Jacket was, I thought, a write off and the jersey may have been ok but it looked like I’d been attacked by a pack of dogs (quip courtesy of @velo__city). Having sent the items off to Rapha I waited about 4 weeks. Also I didn’t purchase the jacket online but they still said they would take a look at it.
I am extremely happy with the quality of the repairs and that they did it for a princely sum of £0. Say what you will about them, their marketing and the people who wear their stuff but this sort of service is worth a bit of name calling on a forum or elitist clubs. Well done Rapha.
Oh there are no photo’s of the repaired arm warmer because they just gave me a new one for free. (and returned the busted one!)
Heres a filthy pic of my leg in second skin just fer laffs.
Anyway on to the good stuff…