EF Education First was kind of shocking when they first debuted their bright pink Rapha kit a few years back. But they apparently started running afoul of the UCI’s technical regulations when they raced TDU in Blackout Kit because they wanted to save the official reveal for later in the season. They things got even wilder, with more fowl-inspiration in the crazy Rapha x Palace EF Pro Cycling kit raced in last year’s delayed Giro d’Italia, here bringing fines for having ‘not been registered in time’. Disruption has always been the key, but it seems the UCI wasn’t ever so happy with the breaches in their rules & regulations.
Rapha EF Education-Nippo racing kit: “world’s most compliant jersey”
So, this season EF Education-Nippo promises to go from that duck bill painted aero TT helmet, to something more in line with those regulations, and try not to “ruffle too many feathers” along the way…
“After getting into hot water last season, we’ve decided to create a compliant kit for 2021. In fact, we’ve tried to create the world’s most compliant cycling kit. Though we’ve earned a reputation as rule breakers, our design for this season centres around the rulemakers’ regulations… From the world’s least compliant jersey, to the world’s most compliant jersey“.
To guarantee that they comply with the regulations, Rapha’s EF design team just blocked out all the rules they could find right on the jersey – from sizing to spacing. And then, left those guidelines after the logos were all compliantly dropped & scaled into place.
The details are small, and you won’t likely spot them from helicopter-mounted TV cameras. But EF will know they are there, quietly flipping the bird to the UCI. And you’ll be able to get in on the joke too. Rapha says they’ll make the 2021 team kit available to the public in April.