Rapha And Why Pink Is Cyclists’ Colour Of Choice

December 2019Words by Mr Jim Merrett

Long before millennials adopted a dusty variant of the tone, pink was the colour of choice for another section of society: cyclists. In the Venn diagram of age and interests, it is possible to fall into both camps, but if millennials are, often wrongly, dismissed as snowflakes who are too busy Instagramming their avocado on toast and flat whites to do any hard graft, the same cannot be said of cyclists. “Beyond pain, there is a whole universe of more pain,” former pro cyclist Mr Jens Voigt once said. Road cyclists, in particular, seem bent on inflicting a perverse level of suffering on themselves.

Pink adds a pop of colour to an outfit, and if you’re riding a bike, it could be the difference between a motorist spotting you or not, but it is woven into the history of cycling as a sport. It’s the colour of the leader’s jersey in the Giro d’Italia. The multiple-stage, three-week road race was set up in 1909 to promote Italian newspaper La Gazzetta dello Sport, which is printed on pink paper, hence the colour found its way into the cyclist’s wardrobe.