Eurosport's coverage of the Giro d'Italia brought to you by Sigma Sports
My local bike shop Sigma Sports has really expanded over the last year, they’re bolstering-up on content creation and have recently poached Jake Armstrong (a fantastically talented Creative) to elevate the visual identity and create high-quality content for the brand.
This year Sigma Sports are sponsoring Eurosport's coverage of the Giro d’Italia, we headed to Sussex to film the break-bumpers, social content and a short film.
The film is about escaping to the coast, the journey, the sense of freedom as you arrive with a sunset on the horizon. Riding in good kit with a fast, well maintained machine makes the ride even better.
The Kit - Castelli
Being Italian, Castelli was the only choice for the sponsorship of Eurosport’s coverage of the Giro d’Italia, Sigma Sports have a great relationship with Castelli and stock a huge range in-store and online, I had the pick of the crop.
I have tried and tested a fair amount of kit… Castelli is still at the top of my list when performance is priority, as they have years of experience and R&D under their belt.
The heavens smiled upon us, the sun was shining (for the first time this year…) The Castelli Climbers 2.0 jersey was an obvious choice - paired with the Aero Race bibs for an incredibly lightweight combination. The Jersey & bibs are outstanding, seams are carefully placed, cut well, and move with your body.
I always use Castelli bib shorts on the turbo trainer, when you producing power for long periods of time, locked in the same position - the Progetto X2 pad keeps that ‘numbness’ at bay… On the road they feel even better, you can ride consecutive long days, without ‘issues’.
Castelli caters for all my cycling needs, when speed is the ultimate goal their race-ready range is second to none, when the weather is shit I reach for the Gabba; when comfort, style and all day riding are on the menu? I reach for CHPT3 - David Millar’s own brand, designed and manufactured in collaboration with his long-term sponsor Castelli.
CHPT3 combines style with innovation & performance, a chic tailored aesthetic inspired by the rich tapestry of cycling history and Millar’s own career. I try to achieve the ‘Modern classic’ archetype both on and off the bike, my style values are nicely aligned with Millar and I really enjoy his insight during race commentary, in his books, films and on social media.
The Bike - 3T
There is a LOT of noise about the new 3T Strada and its radical (in the world of road cycling) single ring on the front, dustbin-lid on the back. A double chainset may provide 22 gears, but there is a lot of ratio duplication. Good design is (sometimes) about removing what you don’t need; road cyclists need a sprinting gear, climbing gear and a good amount of options in-between, the 3T Strada offers the above and removes the possibility of chain slip when entering a climb or bouncing over cobbles.
The gaps between changes aren't as bad as I expected, you just have to compensate with leg speed, I think this is the future for certain terrains, races, and events (it seems to be working for Aqua Blue Sport).
The frame was surprisingly light for a ‘fast bike’ the head tube is very steep, this creates a shorter wheelbase and faster bike, but at the sacrifice of HUGE toe overlap, you have to remember to adjust pedal position when navigating a tight manoeuvre, otherwise, you'll scuff your shoes... A steep head-tube also means twitchy handling, especially with deep section rims (crosswinds) this can be overcome with a longer stem to counteract.
Equipped with Shimano Dura-Ace Di2; the shifters were programmed to move the rear derailleur with the left or right levers, as well as button shifters on the top of the hoods - these are great when you’re climbing.
The Strada is equipped with disc brakes, I cannot argue the superior stopping distance and modulation compared to calipers, I can see why pro’s and amateur cyclists alike are making the transition.
You may recognise me as a traditionalist, my bias for a beautifully crafted Campagnolo Gruppo, Flemish compact (53x39) and the beautiful sound of a mechanical clunk when you shift down the block is never going to allow me to accept change, but I love design, breaking convention and rebellion, so good on you 3T for shaking things up.
The Shoes - Sidi
More Italian 'classe' from SIDI - with their ’shot’ slippers, the tensioning system is beautifully over-engineered and gives full adjustability around the foot and heel; once you get these pearly-white dancing shoes dialed-in they make you feel (and look) like Cinderella (thankfully carbon is lighter than glass and less likely to smash...).
The laughter was non-stop, I think my cheek muscles ached more than my legs. Nothing is more important than the people you work and spend time with, the connections we make along the way. Being in the company of likeminded, creative and talented minds was refreshing.