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Café du Cycliste Bastille Day Kit

Celebrate Liberté, Égalité and Fraternité ith this French-themed kit by Café du Cycliste

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When Bastille Day rolls around each July 14 at the Tour de France, you can count on a pack of French riders all vying to get into the early breakaway. With the entire country getting the day off for a national celebration similar to Independence Day in the U.S., more eyes are on the Tour than ever. And the potential of a stage win tastes even sweeter on this national holiday. But with the Tour happening mostly in September this year, things are somewhat different—although you can still celebrate the French nation’s liberté, égalité and fraternité with the Bastille Edition Breton Jersey from Café du Cycliste.

PELOTON

Based in Nice, the Grand Départ of the 2020 Tour, Café du Cycliste is celebrating its French heritage with this special Bastille Edition of its Francine jersey. Subtly but tastefully styled, the jersey is predominantly white, but features accents of red and blue, the other two colors of the French tricolor flag, woven into the fabric rather than sublimated on. On the back pocket lies a patch depicting Marianne, the symbol of the French Republic, who’s seen throughout the country from prominent public statues to artwork and even stamps. Additionally, the Café du Cycliste logo on raised rubber lettering provides a nice tactile feel and another premium detail to this $170 jersey.

bastille day kit

Picking up the Francine jersey for the first time, we weren’t sure if it would hold its own in warm weather. The fabric feels well constructed, but noticeably thick. However, mesh material on the sides as well as a strip down the center of the back provides ample ventilation and we didn’t find any need to unzip even on lengthy, exposed climbs in warm weather. Further improving ventilation, the mesh material extends through the rear center pocket; and the other two pockets are made of a thin netting, which requires less fabric and is more breathable. For extremely hot days, we would opt for a lighter jersey. But the Francine’s midweight fabric is versatile, handling slightly cooler weather admirably, making it an excellent choice for cool-to-warm days, and days with expected swings in temperature.

We coupled our test jersey with the summer-weight Augustine bibs in navy, which feature the brand’s comfortable and breathable top-level chamois. The lightweight fabric—which is cool to the touch possibly due to a coldblack treatment that reduces heat and UV ray absorption—is very breathable and offers a comfortable amount of stretchiness. But at the same time, the material also stays in place and offers enough compression, making this a great pair of bibs to reach for on warm days. 

$170 (jersey), $258 (bibs); cafeducycliste.com

From issue 97, the Official Tour de France Guide, get your copy here.