Rapha collaborates with Palace on new EF Education kits for Tour de France and Tour de France Femmes
Team sponsors Cannondale, POC, WHOOP, and Wahoo are providing new bikes and gear to match.
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Ducks are out. Dragons are in.
EF Education–EasyPost, EF Education-Tibco-SVB and team kit sponsor Rapha have once again collaborated with skate and streetwear brand Palace on a limited edition kit design, this time for the Tour de France and Tour de France Femmes.
It’s a decidedly tamer design than the last time the WorldTour team and Palace collaborated on a kit, a design for the 2020 Giro d’Italia which featured a cartoon duck and color scheme departing majorly from the team’s usual pink. But this time around, the jersey isn’t meant simply to avoid confusion with the maglia rosa leader’s jersey and drum up press; it celebrates the return of the Tour de France Femmes.
The new kit maintains the men’s and women’s teams’ trademark pink, while incorporating a large female gender symbol, a circle with a cross below it, on the front of the jersey. Two green cartoon dragons rest their arms on the cross of the symbol.
“The dragon is a symbol of supernatural power, wisdom, strength, and hidden knowledge,” said Rapha’s head of marketing for North America, Brandon Camarda. “It’s not gender specific, but we felt it was a great way of encapsulating the spirit of the women who ride for EF Education-TIBCO-SVB.”
And it’s not just Rapha getting in on the fun. Other team sponsors are joining in, with POC, WHOOP, and Wahoo designing gear to match. Apparently, rubber shoe company Crocs, whose shoes oscillate in and out of style, is also in on the collaboration, but we’ve yet to see what the brand has pulled together.
For its part, Cannondale is providing the team refreshed paint on its SuperSix Evo, SystemSix and SuperSlice bikes. Going from the headtube back, the paint fades from pink to white to blue, with the female symbol and several Palace logos featuring prominently. At the front, the handlebar tape matches the green of the Palace logos and cartoon dragons. And the design gets unique in the true sense of the word for the bikes, with each rider’s SuperSlice time trial frame including easter eggs specifically for each rider.
The Rapha team kit will include the men’s and women’s versions of the Pro Team Aero Jersey, Pro Team Training Jersey and Pro Team Bib Shorts II. Both team kits are rounded out by matching editions socks, caps, and musettes.
Rapha has also announced off-bike casual clothing as part of the collaboration, but hasn’t yet released images or other details.
The teams will be riding the special kit and bikes only for the Tour de France and Tour de France Femmes. But there’s good news for fans of the collaboration who aren’t good enough to make the EF Tour rosters: both the Rapha team kit and Cannondale SuperSix Evo frame will be available to purchase.
Demand was high last time around. The first Rapha-Palace kit sold out quickly, with kits soon ending up on resale sites at marked up prices. Rapha will be releasing the kits in three drops, one for the US/Canada, one for Europe, and one for the Asia-Pacific region to provide riders around the world a better shot at buying the kit. The kits will be available through both Rapha’s and Palace’s websites and retail stores.
The SuperSix Evo frame will be available from Cannondale, Rapha, and Palace’s websites.
Availability date for the kits and frames has not been released yet.
EF Education–EasyPost has a history of eye-catching designs since that initial swap out kit with Palace at the 2020 Giro. For the previous two editions, 2021 and 2022, the team has also swapped out its pink jerseys, though those last two kits haven’t brought in outside collaborators like Palace.