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The Bike That Flew: Sarah Swallow on the Tour Divide

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The Bike That Flew: Sarah Swallow on the Tour Divide

Over at Rapha, Sarah Swallow shares her story about how her Tour Divide almost ended before it even began:

The journey began with a three-day drive from my home in Colorado to the start line in Montana. My partner Adam and I were wrapping up a long day of driving and looking for a place to camp south of Seeley Lake, Montana when we drove over a large bump in the tarmac at 60 mph. The entire truck bounced like a sea-saw, causing us both to cringe when we heard a snap and saw something in the rearview mirror.

“What was that!?” I yelled.”It was a bike…” Adam answered.”Was it your bike?” I asked desperately.”I think it was your bike…” he responded.We stopped the car, and I got out to confirm that my Tour Divide bike lay one hundred yards down the road. I ran toward it hysterically like it was a loved pet that had just been run over.

Head on over to the Rapha blog to read more!

Rapha’s MTB Digital Woodland Camo Print Pack is Now Available

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Rapha’s MTB Digital Woodland Camo Print Pack is Now Available

Experimenting with patterns is in Rapha’s DNA as a brand and their latest experimentation is part of a Woodland Camp Print Pack. Included in this drop are MTB jerseys, both long and 3/4 sleeved, for men and women, a women’s trail tank top, sunglasses, and a Smith helmet. These will most likely sell out before you click over but check out the full drop at Rapha.

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EF Pro Racing: the Alt Tour – Lachlan Morton’s Tour de France Self-Supported Tour

This is quite the undertaking!

“La Grande Boucle is cycling’s ultimate challenge, with the biggest audience, the toughest parcours and the most prestigious prize. From the outside, the race is a constantly moving feast of sound, colour, effort and emotion but for the racers inside the bubble, life on Tour travelling from one hotel to the next can be somewhat sterile particularly in the midst of a pandemic.

This year, for a fresh perspective on what it takes to compete at the world’s greatest bike race, Lachlan Morton is taking on his own Alt Tour. In a challenge inspired by the inaugural edition of 1903, he’ll ride every stage and every transfer completely unsupported, covering a distance of 5,500km and climbing over 65,000 metres in just 23 days. Starting just before the first stage, he’ll ride nearly double the distance and make the equivalent of an extra thirteen ascents of the Tourmalet, all with the ultimate aim of beating the peloton to Paris.

As well as a fresh perspective, Lachlan will also be riding with a new purpose. To make every kilometre he covers really count, Rapha and Education First are each donating 500 bikes to World Bicycle Relief and, with your help, we can donate even more. If you’re inspired by Lachlan’s challenge and would like to support him, you too can donate to WBR and help provide even more young people with the bikes they need to access an education.

With no teammates to shelter behind, no mechanical assistance and no rest days, the Alt Tour is Lachlan’s greatest challenge yet. How many bikes can we donate? Will Lachlan make it to Paris? And will he arrive before the peloton? There’s only one way to find out…”

Follow Lachlan’s dot!

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Rapha: the Nomad Collection

This video has all the vibes and our friends and we couldn’t be more happy to share it with y’all!

“The spirit of adventure runs deep in cycling. It also goes way back. In 1976, riders from across America, many of them women, took to the newly established TransAmerica Trail for the trip of a lifetime from coast to coast. Inspired by their journeys and designed to help you on yours, the limited edition Nomad collection is designed for discovery, helping to unlock the sense of freedom that only a bike ride can provide.”

Good job, Rapha! See the entire Nomad Collection on their website.

Rapha’s Snow Peak Collection

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Rapha’s Snow Peak Collection

In the outdoor space, few companies provide products as resilient as they are good-lookin’ as Snow Peak. Their titanium cookware lasts forever and their compact camping solutions have proven to be excellent allies on bicycle tours so it makes sense that Rapha would pair up with Snow Peak on a capsule collection, live now at their site. Sure, if you already have this gear, you don’t need to be bothered but if you’re a fan of Rapha and are curious about Snow Peak’s legacy, this is for you. I’ve been using the new Kanpai bottle for hot and cold-brewed coffee and its worked a treat.

See the collection at Rapha.

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Rapha’s Performance MTB Trailwear

Today marks the launch of Rapha’s new Performance Trailwear for MTB riding and included in the launch today is this video that caught our eyes with its lo-fi appeal. See the whole men‘s and women‘s Trailwear lineup, including helmets, hip bags, jerseys, bibs, and jackets at Rapha. We got our grubby mitts on some of it, so expect a more in-depth look on the way.

Control-Alt-Delete: Bikepacking the AZT – Plan B

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Control-Alt-Delete: Bikepacking the AZT – Plan B

When this year’s last winter storm went big (like, really big) we realized we’d have to adjust our plan to bikepack the Coconino Loop in northern Arizona. We shifted our focus South, to the Arizona Trail segments around Tucson, hoping the lower latitude and elevation would deliver the sunshine we craved.

Instead, we were greeted in Tucson with heavy rain, so we postponed the trip by a day, hoping it would blow over. When the next day also looked rainy, and kind of snowy too, we lost half our riding crew. My partner Brandon, our friend Sarah and I decided to make a start anyway.

A Look at Rapha’s New Powerweave Explore Gravel Shoes

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A Look at Rapha’s New Powerweave Explore Gravel Shoes

In my opinion, you don’t need racing shoes to do rides. Back when we started riding ‘cross bikes on singletrack and fire roads, the only real options were stiff ‘cross racing shoes. Footwear tech and ideologies have come a long way since with the case in point being the latest from the Rapha apparel line, the Powerweave Explore Gravel Shoes. I’ve been lucky enough to get my grubby hands on a pair to check out and post up a quick first impressions review of these beautiful shoes.

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the Further Away, the Better

Rapha presents an Icelandic excursion:

“I’ve ridden many thousands of miles on my bike all these years and I can’t say I regret anything… There were rough times but also good times. You just know it’s a challenge that you’ve got to overcome.”

We all have roads that lodge in our mind, routes we want to take. One such route is across the Sprengisandur, an uninhabited highland plateau crowned by an 826-metre pass in the central ranges of Iceland.

Plenty have tried to cross, and plenty have failed. In 2015, Rapha sent filmmaker George Marshall and framebuilder Tom Donhou to attempt the crossing. But after days of high winds, the pair were forced to stop. Four years later, George returned to lead another group across the 170 miles between the end of the tarmac near Reykjavik and the northern stronghold town of Akureyri. But they were far from being the first to make the crossing.

Over 60 years before, Ron Bartle joined Dick Phillips, Bernard Heath and their guide Raymond Bottomley for the first-ever unsupported ride across the Sprengisandur. They spent ten days in the wilderness, crossing rivers in inflatable dinghies and pushing their bikes for miles over boulder fields until they finally reached the first farmstead in the north.

Now in his mid-eighties and still an avid cyclist, Ron has recounted the story of his unexpected Icelandic adventure. And at a time when many of us cannot ride the roads lodged in our minds, he reminds us that they’ll still be there this year and the next.

Rapha Sponsors Sarah Sturm and Lael Wilcox and Launches Women’s Instagram Channel

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Rapha Sponsors Sarah Sturm and Lael Wilcox and Launches Women’s Instagram Channel

Rapha is growing their support for women and not just professional cyclists. Today the brand announced its sponsorship of two charismatic personalities, Sarah Sturm and Lael Wilcox. Both of these women are great representatives of the gravel/adventure/touring market and we couldn’t be more stoked for them. Rapha also launched a women’s Instagram, so keep an eye on that for more updates as events warrant.

Rapha + Palace Giro d’Italia Bikes to Be Raffled to Further Support Diversity in Cycling

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Rapha + Palace Giro d’Italia Bikes to Be Raffled to Further Support Diversity in Cycling

Remember the Rapha + Palace kit and bikes that dropped right before the Giro d’Italia, causing quite the stir? Well, USA Cycling is hosting a raffle with all proceeds going towards Contributing to New Co-ed Cycling Programs at Historically Black Colleges and Universities and Tribal Colleges and Universities. Cannondale and EF Pro Cycling have donated two of the Giro d’Italia change out bikes for this raffle.

Read more below…

The Rapha and Palace Collection Will Be Available This Friday

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The Rapha and Palace Collection Will Be Available This Friday

This Friday, October 9th, the Rapha and Palace collection will be available for Rapha Members. That means it might be hard for non-Members to get their hands on some of these goods but we can only hope! Here’s the word from Rapha:

“Every Palace launch is highly anticipated, and each garment they make is an extremely limited edition, produced only in very small numbers. This foray into the professional peloton will be no different. And with much of the kit going directly to EF Pro Cycling at the Giro d’Italia, availability will be especially limited.

To give our members the best possible chance of securing a piece of the switch-out kit, the Rapha Cycling Club has managed to secure a very limited run of team edition race clothing and casualwear. Members will have exclusive early access from Friday, 9th October. Stay tuned for more information.”

*The collection will be available to members who were active on or before Sunday, 4th October or have renewed a previously lapsed membership since that date.

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Womens 100

Now in its eighth year, the Rapha Women’s 100 challenges riders around the world to share the road and ride 100 kilometers together on the same day. 2020 may be looking a little bit different from previous years and coming together can be complicated, but there is still a way… Watch this video for some familiar faces and check out the entire Womens 100 collection at Rapha.