Stories

testing
testing
testing
testing
testing
testing
testing
testing
testing
POP! BANG! POW!

POP! BANG! POW!

LIMITED WOW! is bold, brash and racy. Like the art movement that it parodies, this collection is certain to cause a stir. Each kit uses dots and the bold hues that were synonymous with the work of leading pop artists.

READ MORE
Black Sheep Goes to Town in Korea

Black Sheep Goes to Town in Korea

When Black Sheep began life on the smell of an oily chain rag at the back of a Queensland garage (literally), social media was the only consideration on how to get our two-kit LIMITED Collection to the expectant cycling public. That was four years ago. A lot has happened since. Our digital-first, direct-to-consumer threads are now in bricks-and-mortar bike stores worldwide – from Bangkok to Boulder, London to Los Angeles and Cape Town to Kuala Lumpar. We pop-up at home in Brisbane, Adelaide and, frankly, wherever we can ride bikes and throw a party.

READ MORE
ELEMENTS LOOKBOOK

ELEMENTS LOOKBOOK

The road to a successful winter of riding has never been clearer. Our all-new ELEMENTS Collection, rebuilt from tip to toe, has got you covered. In all conditions. Winter is a battle we won’t have you lose.

READ MORE
FIX UP.

FIX UP.

LOOK SHARP.

 

READ MORE
FUTURE CLASSIC

FUTURE CLASSIC

THREE WEEKENDS IN SPRING.

 

READ MORE
EURO COLLECTION.

EURO COLLECTION.

MADE IN ITALY.

 

READ MORE
MADE BY NATURE

MADE BY NATURE

THE BENEFITS OF MERINO

 

READ MORE
MONUMENTS.

MONUMENTS.

 

SUNDAY ROADS FOREVER.

 

READ MORE
KING EDDY.

KING EDDY.

THE HARD MAN.

 

An eleven-time Grand Tour winner, Eddy Merckx was the undisputed king of his generation. Many consider him the greatest ever. But his career would not have been complete without his career-defining victory at the Tour of Flanders.

 

It was 1969, the Summer of Love was upon on us. Flower Power children were opposing the Vietnam War. Concorde took to the skies for the first time over France and Belgian Eddy Merckx was dominating the roads.

 

After three years as a professional, Merckx's resume was already the envy of his bitter rivals. Not long after turning pro with Peugeot in 1966 he had won Milan–San Remo and then retook La Classicissima the following year. In 1968 he claimed the first of his five Giro d'Italia to add to his victory at Paris-Roubaix (the first of three). There were few holes to be filled on his Palmares.

 

One of those holes was his home Classic – the Tour of Flanders. To win the Ronde van Vlaanderen is to become a Flandrien – a hard man.

READ MORE
MONSIEUR ROUBAIX.

MONSIEUR ROUBAIX.

Eddy Merckx is a name that rolls off the tongue of any cycling enthusiast. And rightly so. But he's not the only legend who can lay claim to conquering all five Monuments. Two other brave men can boast the same feat. Rik Van Looy and 'Monsieur Paris-Roubaix' himself Roger De Vlaeminck. Despite Tom Boonen equaling De Vlaeminck's record of four race Roubaix victories in 2012, he remains the original gatekeeper of the ‘Hell of the North’. A man so deft on the pavé, it wasn’t until his eleventh edition that he suffered the merest puncture.

READ MORE
SPRING BACK.

SPRING BACK.

LA CLASSICISSIMA D’EPOCA.

 

READ MORE
SUNDAY ROADS FOREVER.

SUNDAY ROADS FOREVER.

Sunday is a day of rest. Not so if you're a cyclist. For today is the day that many of us will go long. We will measure our courage, character and resolve against kilometres clocked, metres risen and elements thrown down.

 

Today is the day we show our mettle, signify our intent and fulfil our cycling wanderlust. Today is Sunday.

 

The Sundays of Spring also mark the beginning of the European cycling season. They are not days of rest. Far from it. For throughout March and April, brave riders will don their new liveries to challenge themselves in thrilling one-day races known as the Spring Classics. Races such as the Strade Bianchi, Milan-San Remo, Tour of Flanders and Paris-Roubaix are not competitions typified by marginal gains, watts-per-kilo or stifling tactics. But by bravery, suffering and, very occasionally, luck.

READ MORE
BATTLE READY.

BATTLE READY.

LOVE BIKES NOT WAR.

Cycling apparel and war aren't obvious bunk bedfellows, but this is camo gone crazy. LIMITED | Barmy Army is military-inspired cycling fatigues with a cutting edge, colourful twist. Uniquely Black Sheep. Camo existed long before us and will continue to live on long after. But this is army our way, and we expect it to go off with a spectacular bang.

 

Get ready for battle.

READ MORE
BARMY ARMY.

BARMY ARMY.

THE STORY.

 

Cycling apparel and war aren't obvious bunk bedfellows, but this is camo gone crazy. We don't always take ourselves too seriously at Black Sheep so this is not some charged LIMITED Collection to signify world peace, but a bloody good melting pot idea for military-inspired apparel with the sole goal of extracting a thread of fun.

 

The Australians among you will know the BARMY ARMY as the fanatical-travelling, trumpet-blowing cheer squad that follow the English cricket team to our fair shores every few years. Well, we took their name for motivation, (thankfully) left any further analogies to English cricket at the oval and went about our business of creating army-inspired fatigues finding our influence from the mods and rockers of 1960s to the Russian Revolution's Red Army.

READ MORE
POWER TO THE PEOPLE.

POWER TO THE PEOPLE.

SMELLS LIKE TEAM SPIRIT.

 

A new look Specialized Women's Racing launched on January 3, 2018. The kit, created by Black Sheep, was a celebration of everything the team had achieved in establishing themselves as the longest-serving domestic women's team. But the design exhibited a distinct air of determination to evolve. An intention which would be upheld by everyone connected to the team – riders, sponsors and support staff alike. Expectations utterly exceeded, the time has come to reflect on an incredible summer of racing.

 

For a team sport, primarily focussed on individual results, what was abundantly evident from the outset was the cohesive group camaraderie among Specialized Women's Racing. This positive team spirit stretched beyond just Director Sportif Mark Brady and his seven riders and included guest riders, team founder Liz Phillipou, committed sponsors Peta Stewart Conveyancing, Lodex, adidas eyewear and CartGIS. Chris Stevens, owner of CartGIS – a business with no direct link to cycling – deserves special mention for being both one of the team's longest-serving sponsors and also the most dedicated soigneur in the women's peloton. Michael Brown from Specialized, too, has been on hand not only to represent the brand for which he works but also get his hands dirty. A communications specialist by trade, he was on the tools for the Santos Women's Tour Down Under and was on hand to ferry content gatherers around to many of this season's biggest races. And last, but by no means least, thanks must also be extended to former female pro Nicole Moerig and current Black Sheep Ambassador Melita Van Steel who both gave up their time to bring professionalism and content to the Specialized Women's Racing social media channels.

 

On the bike, the team's results were also a testament to incredible solidarity and team spirit. Specialized Women's Racing was fortunate to be invited to high calibre races such as the Women's Tour Down Under, Cadel Evans Great Ocean Road Race and the Herald Sun Tour alongside some of the world's best teams. It was unimaginable at the beginning of the season that SWR would stand on the Team's Classification podium at the Tour Down Under and win the same category at Cadel's. But they did. And a massive congratulations must go to all involved. Chapeau.

 

READ MORE
SHOW YOUR COLOURS

SHOW YOUR COLOURS

READ MORE
ELLA BLOOR.

ELLA BLOOR.

BABY BOOMER.

 

READ MORE
Kate Perry

Kate Perry

"I am meticulous. If I have a goal to achieve or job to do, I'll get it done.

"I am meticulous. If I have a goal to achieve or job to do, I'll get it done. And will have been calculated in the way I prepared." This is how Kate Perry described herself to me late in 2017 at a team training camp in Lorne, Victoria – the backdrop of today's Cadel Evans Great Ocean Road Race. She also went on to tell me: "I see a solid Nationals campaign for the team. I'd personally like to get a good result in the Time Trial [she came 5th]. But my mental energy is unquestionably going to be on the road race this year."

READ MORE
LAST DAYS OF THE DISCO.

LAST DAYS OF THE DISCO.

DAY 7 – AM. WILLUNGA STAGE

 

Saturday was the big dance. Both morning and night. To get the party started, over 200 riders joined us for the pilgrimage to the Queen Stage at the summit of Willunga Hill, Adelaide. All of our 15 or so ride guides and support vehicles were in attendance for what would be our biggest and best day out on the road. Temperatures may have cooled, it was now a positively balmy 37 degrees, but the anticipation was still red hot.

 

We had a long day ahead and the Chateau was brimming from 6:30am with Ben, our trusted barista from Maillot Jaune, getting smashed from the outset. A pre-planned early roll-out meant our fast, medium and social groups were among the first to hit an aptly named Windy Point Road. The social group may have stopped for a few more selfies along the way, but we all made it to McLaren Vale in time to watch the pro peloton roll through. Fortunately, we would only have to make one pass of Willunga Hill to secure to our vantage point for the deciding turn up this dramatic hilltop finish.

READ MORE
SOME LIKE IT HOT.

SOME LIKE IT HOT.

DAY 5 – AM. ADELAIDE'S BEST

 

It was an abridged version of Adelaide's Best Ride, shortened for safety reason because of the extreme South Australian heat. But there was no respite at the Chateau with a day packed full of fun and frolics. Those who braved the heat would be rewarded.

 

Gorge Road, shaded, flooded with dappled light and as beautiful as always offered some solace from the scorching sun, but after that, it was a test of perseverance – for both those on the bike and back at base. There are no good words to describe conditions that exceed 40 degrees, when the water in your bidons resembles lukewarm tea and your eyeballs feel like they're on fire every time you descend. The one advantage being the roads were quiet. Those who had not chosen to take part in the Black Sheep & Specialized festivities for the day were in the safety of their air-conditioned hotels, watching the professionals suffer in their 140k slog to Victor Harbour.

READ MORE
MERCURY RISING.

MERCURY RISING.

DAY 3. TUESDAY ADVENTURE

 

Word had got around. Tuesday would be an adventure. And an eager flamboyance turned up in droves to see where the Flamingoes would fly. It was straight to Stirling, always picturesque, to rid ourselves of any remnants from the previous night's excess. A steady 8km climb and rising temperatures, even early on, got enthusiasm bubbling.

 

Legs suitably brought to life, the Fast group got themselves into a good ol' country chop off for the next 30km rolling through the back roads of Mylor. In the meantime, our Social group were acting in the manner to which they were given their name – taking in the views and stopping to smell the rosemary.

READ MORE
KINGS & CASTLES.

KINGS & CASTLES.

DAY 1. PEOPLE'S PARTY

 

To say Sunday was social is an understatement. From the moment we opened the doors of the Chateau at the crack of dawn, the people flowed like the Maillot Jaune coffee – fast. The furore over our special edition Chateau kit had people lining up on Frome Street in anticipation of getting their mitts on the Flamingo-inspired merch.

 

Eager shoppers and caffeine seekers were then joined by over 100 ladies for the Wheel Women's Ride. Escorted by our very own Specialized Women's Racing team, the group were taken on a picturesque loop out to Henley Beach before returning to the Chateau to join the hordes hanging for a good time.

 

READ MORE
SUMMER RECOLOURED.

SUMMER RECOLOURED.

WELCOME TO A SURNBURNT COUNTRY.

 

SUMMER is a special release Essentials Team Collection; an ode to that time of year when we get to enjoy long days, long rides and long drinks. And life sparkles that little bit brighter. This Collection celebrates our favourite Australian season by taking its cues from the best of our beautiful country. Coral-hued sunsets; the striped sun umbrellas that dot our beaches and backyards; and the waves that lap our coastal towns up and down the country.

 

READ MORE
VIVA LA EVOLUTION.

VIVA LA EVOLUTION.

NEW FACES & PARTNERS

 

Specialized Women’s Racing has evolved for 2018. New faces and partners but the team’s core values remain; fostering the careers of Australia's best young female cyclists and promoting the love of women's cycling. This year, we are excited to present the new Specialized Women’s Racing team in partnership with Black Sheep. The team is a celebration of everything that has been while acknowledging the passionate potential for evolution.

 

READ MORE
KATE MCILROY

KATE MCILROY

THE JOURNEYWOMAN.

 

The chameleon of the Specialized Women's Racing team, having competed as an Elite level runner, triathlete and now cyclist, Kate McIlroy is also without a doubt the most decorated. And most humble. She claims in her charming, tongue-in-cheek manner to be double the age of most of the women in the team. It's not true, of course, but this Wellington-born athlete has notched a number of significant strings to her bow that bely her tender years and steely personality.

 

READ MORE
NEW SUMMER TECH.

NEW SUMMER TECH.

Black Sheep's vision is to create the world's best cycling apparel. Yet this vision is not at the expense of boring you to death, day after day, about how your cycling kit will bring you untouched levels of performance. We'll continue to push the boundaries in apparel, and it will help make cycling more enjoyable for you, but we can't turn you into a sprinter.

READ MORE
SUMMER IS HERE.

SUMMER IS HERE.

CHASING THE SUN.

 

SUMMER is a special release Essentials Team Collection dedicated to our favourite Australian season. This range is a welcome to paradise, a road trip of inspiration from the place we’re fortunate to call home. The jerseys, split into three distinct styles – Wave, Block and Stripe – are all suggestions of a good ol' Australian summer.

 

READ MORE
CHASING THE SUN.

CHASING THE SUN.

 

BIKES, BEACHES & BEER.

 

It’s summertime in Australia. That means blue skies, blazing orange sunsets, cold beers and hours of long rides chasing the sun. You will also face the eternal battle of windows open or death by mozzies and probably suffer a severe scar from a seat belt buckle burn. But there’s only cricket on TV, and your car has no working AC, so why on earth would you be anywhere else but on your bike or covered in the appropriate amount of salt and sand from an arvo at the beach.

 

READ MORE
ELEMENTS.

ELEMENTS.

Rain or wind, darkness or fog, snow or ice, we are often subjected to some of nature’s most extreme conditions when on two wheels. Staying protected from the Elements and staying safe on the road are your only consideration.

READ MORE
THE SPARTACUS.

THE SPARTACUS.

We bid a fond farewell to Fabian Cancellara. The curtain has come down on Spartacus’ glittering career in typical fashion. The Swiss legend delivering Trek-Segafredo teammate, Fumiyuki Bepputo, to victory in the Japan Cup Criterium.

 

Spartacus’ 16-year career included three victories at the Tour of Flanders, seven stages of the Tour de France, four of the Vuelta, four world time trial titles and two Olympic time trial gold medals. His second coming this year at the Rio Olympic Games – a fitting end to an incredible cycling career.

 

But it is for his three victories at Paris-Roubaix that we will remember him best …

 

“Every race is a war. Every race is a fight. If you don‘t go into every event with that belief, you will never achieve your goals.” –   Cancellara

 

The Spartacus was a marked man. Defending champion on the Hell of the North. The Bernese rider in typical gladiatorial mood. Plotting a hat-trick of triumphs in this, the bleakest of spring classics. 2006, edition 104 of the Paris-Roubaix, is often remembered for three riders – Leif Hoste, Peter van Petegem and Vladimir Gusev – being disqualified by the race jury after craftily, and illegally, speeding through a closed railway crossing.

 

Attacking with 20 clicks to go, Cancellara chipped away at his opponents. The lead built. He found himself alone and in front. ‘It’s going to be the longest few kilometres of his life,’ mused commentator Phil Liggett as the Swiss approached the Roubaix velodrome. False. Cancellara cruised home, prevailing by over a minute.

READ MORE
8 WAYS TO WEAR

8 WAYS TO WEAR

AND OTHER NUGGETS OF LIFE-CHANGING INFORMATION

 

Disclaimer: If you take yourself too seriously please look away now.

READ MORE
DESIGN OF THE TIMES.

DESIGN OF THE TIMES.

THE CHOICE IS YOURS.

 

LIMITED | Swiss Legacy is a progressive exploration through traditional and modern minimalism. In the past Swiss-style was so well considered, it gave the impression it was created with little effort. That legacy is now being reinterpreted with more personality, playfulness and humour. To honour the past and present, each kit in this LIMITED Collection comes with choice: Old versus new; alt versus neue. Neither is wrong, all of it is right. The choice is entirely up to you.

READ MORE
A NEUE BEGINNING.

A NEUE BEGINNING.

THE LATEST LIMITED COLLECTION BY BLACK SHEEP.

 

The Swiss Legacy has been a passion project of ours for some time. Beyond Fabian's legs, or Roger's racquet, the world’s most useful pocket knife, the watch on your wrist or even that hunk of chocolate you’re chowing, the Swiss have given us so much of what we love and cherish. All around us are trademarks of Swiss designers. It's everywhere. And right now, it;s going through rapid change. Change that has and will affect us, for the good.

 

READ MORE
SEAMLESS BIB & BRACE

SEAMLESS BIB & BRACE

LIMITED | The Swiss Legacy heralds the introduction of our new LIMITED Seamless Bibs, exclusively part of the LIMITED range. A development that has been many months in the making, sharing resources across continents.

READ MORE
SWISS LEGACY.

SWISS LEGACY.

DESIGN IS ALL AROUND US.

 

 

READ MORE
THE MAN RIDE 2017

THE MAN RIDE 2017

TURNING CHAOS INTO CONTROL.

 

READ MORE
DAY 5 & MAN RIDE DAY

DAY 5 & MAN RIDE DAY

THE MAN RIDE DOCUMENTARY. RELEASED THURSDAY OCT 12

READ MORE
THE CHAOS COLLECTION

THE CHAOS COLLECTION

There is no such thing as reality. As we walk through life, our perception of each and every moment is guided by not just what is in front of us, but what is also within us. It’s a beautiful thing where our own emotions and feelings dictate our own individual experiences. This is the reality that only you can see. How beautiful is it?

READ MORE
BREAKING BORDERS

BREAKING BORDERS

MAN RIDE 2017.

 

READ MORE
GAIN CONTROL

GAIN CONTROL

MAN RIDE 2017.

 

READ MORE
Raw Hide

Raw Hide

MAN RIDE 2017.

Everybody hurts is apparently not just a song made popular by REM in the early Nineties. This morning, it's a fact. Or perhaps it's just in your head. Your brain conjures the worst scenario imaginable to make Day Two seem as difficult as possible, but the reality is much different. Today is no better or worse than every day will be this week. We're all fine and will go on to be rewarded for our heroic efforts the previous day – if 200k is ever a gift.

READ MORE
TEARS FOR FEARS

TEARS FOR FEARS

MAN RIDE 2017.

Day One. Sunny. With a chance of the apocalyptic. Today was biblical. Jason Roberts described it as "momentous. At times tear-jerking", so we turned to him for his view on the epic drama that unfolded.

READ MORE
GROUND ZERO.

GROUND ZERO.

LONDON TO HOLYHEAD.

 

And so it begins again. Some of us have been here before. We've experienced the pain. The unexpected numb toes at nought degrees in the Australian Outback. The blistered hands after three days and fifty dirt-filled kilometres. The darkness and climax-inducing adulation. For others, this is a new experience. A challenge not yet conquered. Demons not yet overcome. The light is a long way off. But it will come.

 

READ MORE
THE REAL OSHER

THE REAL OSHER

It's lunchtime on Friday. Osher Günsberg has just come off air hosting the morning show on Brisbane's Hit 105, and has gone straight into media commitments for The Bachelor Australia, which climaxed the night before and which he also hosts. It's a day when he could be forgiven for rescheduling our catchup, but he doesn't hesitate to speak to us.

 

READ MORE
BATTLING BIPOLAR

BATTLING BIPOLAR

 

READ MORE
THROUGH THE CHAOS

THROUGH THE CHAOS

Words by John Polson, Managing Director, Black Sheep Cycling

READ MORE
ESSENTIALS – TEAM COLLECTION

ESSENTIALS – TEAM COLLECTION

EVERYONE. ANYWHERE. EVERYWHERE

A passport to another place. Whether you’re a boundary pusher, globe-trotting storyteller, regular bunch rider or long distance lunatic, the Essentials – Team Collection unites us all. One world. One community. One kit. An everyday Essential. For Everyone. Anywhere. Everywhere.

READ MORE
ALWAYS BARÇA

ALWAYS BARÇA

Our New City Guide Series.

 

READ MORE
OUR DESIGN TRIP

OUR DESIGN TRIP

When we conceived LIMITED | Summer of Love we became wrapped in this beautiful story of lowered inhibitions and shared love. Everything we have done since has attempted to stay true to the significance and nuances of the time.

READ MORE
RACE TO THE STARS

RACE TO THE STARS

A quest into the unknown search of a cure. The continuation of the series titled   Obsession of the Unknown, we spoke with a man determined to make a difference, an everyday hero.

Dave McAdam is your everyday hero, not motivated by notoriety or fame, but the simple desire and determination to make a difference. Dave's niece was recently diagnosed with cystic fibrosis, a condition that affects the lungs with debilitating symptoms that until now, at least, there has been no known cure.

READ MORE
GIANT SANTA MONICA

GIANT SANTA MONICA

In a city almost unanimously associated with heavy motorised traffic, and no bicycle friendly infrastructure, a small shop by the beach has carved a niche in cycling community that hasn’t gone unnoticed.

 

Black Sheep's daring disciple, Zach Canning, visited the shop to dive into a detailed Q&A session only comparable to Lance’s confession to Oprah on primetime television. Perhaps not. But you get where we're going.

 

READ MORE
FLUORESCENT ADOLESCENTS

FLUORESCENT ADOLESCENTS

GIANT SANTA MONICA SHOP KIT.

 

In 2017, Giant Santa Monica, Black Sheep Cycling, West Side Eagle Cobra and a whole lot of good brands and great people are launching a team. But this not your standard cycling team. There may, of course, be the occasional number pinned on, but it’s not the primary focus. This is all about showcasing Santa Monica, Southern California and the guys and gals that make this piece of the world one of the most magical places of them all.

Our very own Zach Canning takes us out into the Malibu Hills to preview the area, the kit, and enlighten us all with what makes SoCal cyclists tick.

 

READ MORE
YOUR RIDE NEVER STOPS

YOUR RIDE NEVER STOPS

CONTROL THE CLIMATE.

Rain or wind, darkness or fog, snow or ice, we are often subjected to some of nature’s most extreme conditions when on two wheels. Staying protected from the ELEMENTS. and staying safe on the road are your only consideration. They are our only consideration. Your ride never stops.

READ MORE
THE CLASSIC

THE CLASSIC

AWESOME FORESOMES.

Expect the unexpected. Fear the worst. Fun for everyone. Terrain to test the best. The inaugural Racing Club | Classic, hosted in Black Sheep’s home of Brisbane on May 27, had been labelled a litany of things even before the first of this 120 kilometre adventure race had been ridden. The Classic lived up to all its monikers and birthed many more by the end of a gruelling day during which teams of four riders were treated to some of the best and most challenging roads in Australia’s river city.

READ MORE
CIMA COPPI

CIMA COPPI

MADONNA DI GHISALLO

Lake Como sits in the shadows of snow-capped mountains and luxurious waterfront villages. But it also offers some of Italy's most breathtaking riding opportunities and testing climbs. The most legendary is the peak which summits at the Madonna del Ghisallo chapel, an incredible, awe-inspiring shrine to cycling’s heroes and history with some amazing artefacts, including the bike Fausto Coppi rode to victory in the Giro of 1949. If the ascent hasn't already raised the hairs on the back of your neck, the chapel certainly will.

The climb to the chapel, steep and unrelenting, is a regular feature in the Tour of Lombardy and the roll of honour for that reads like a who's who of Italian cycling greats. Coppi himself leads the way with a record five victories.

READ THE COPPI STORY.

READ MORE
BEYOND THE GIRO

BEYOND THE GIRO

FIRENZE – BAGNA DI ROMANA

The opportunity to navigate the Corsa Rosa before the peloton comes through is exhilarating, occasionally treacherous, but always fun-filled. Tifosi are either lining the streets or painting them, locals are already out in anticipation of the race and always on hand to shout encouragement: 'Vai, vai!' And the entire hierarchy of Italian police, each with their unique and detailed uniforms, gesticulate in a manner only they have the answer to.

READ MORE
CHASING PINK

CHASING PINK

THE CIRCUS.

Terrible roads, unpredictable weather and, occasionally, chaotically organised, the Giro d'Italia has no right to be as compelling a race as it is. But somehow it's survived 99 editions of this unexpected beauty and is toasting its century edition with all the same haphazard pomp and pageantry that make it the Grand Tour.

What defines the Giro is the people. Italians are notoriously passionate and they proudly parade pink in support of the Corsa Rosa. There's not a hint of the French reluctance you see at Le Tour. Here, cars are painted pink. Bikes are wrapped in pink. Pink balloons line every street, adorn every child. In preparation for its May arrival, green-fingered Italians even grown their roses rosa.

READ MORE
GAME OF TONES

GAME OF TONES

WORDS BY JOHN POLSON, CEO & HEAD DESIGNER, BLACK SHEEP CYCLING.

The power of colour has never been more true. The advent of the digital revolution has opened up a gamut that until four years ago was only ever experienced sparsely, at best. We have never been more spoilt for choice but never been less satisfied. I often find myself transfixed by palettes of yesteryear, with their relative naivety and the comfort they now provide an exhausted mind.

 

 

"In the Essentials – Euro Collection we have sought to transport you back to a time that did beautiful, easily."

In the Essentials – Euro Collection we have sought to transport you back to a time that did beautiful, easily. We have taken the true blues, greens, and pink hues and created a tone that is closer to something organic in nature, rather than synthetic in code. By adding a drop of grey to each hue, or shade to be technical, the Euro Collection gives you an earthy glow that is timeless and capturing.

We hope you enjoy our trip through time. I challenge you to see how these colours mix and work together so effortlessly. See how they beautifully match, or contrast in ensemble with almost limitless possibilities. This is how it should be. This is how we should all fall in love with colour.

READ MORE
EURO COLLECTION

EURO COLLECTION

THE EVERYDAY HERO.

The Essentials – Euro Collection by Black Sheep is a significant development for a range that has an unwavering commitment to continue being your ‘Everyday Hero’. The Euro Collection provides the rider with the ultimate in mid-weight rideability. A collection you can wear in the summer, and in the winter. Layer it. Or wear it as is. A collection for your every day.

READ MORE
COPPI VELODROME

COPPI VELODROME

TURIN BRAKES.

THE FAUSTO COPPI VELODROME IN TURIN HAS A PROUD HISTORY OF FEATS AND FABLES. BUT IN RECENT DECADES IT HAS BEEN LEFT TO RUIN, UNLOVED AND PRACTICALLY ABANDONED. PETER BOURNE GAINED EXCLUSIVE ACCESS TO THE VENUE FOR BLACK SHEEP AND EXPLORES MORE.

The shards of glass scattered around the perimetre walls of the Fausto Coppi velodrome in Turin (Motovelodromo Fausto Coppi to the locals) are rather telling. Once home to thousands of spectators enjoying the final metres of an epic stage race or a track competition of international repute, today the venue’s sole focus is keeping people out. Accesso vietato.

READ MORE
ALFONSINA STRADA

ALFONSINA STRADA

THE UNTOLD STORY.

Alfonsina Strada is the only woman to compete in the Giro d’Italia. Her tale is part legend, part intrigue, part defiance. One of the great anecdotal tales of the Corsa Rosa – books and theatre pieces have been dedicated – but it is relatively untold outside of Italy. Dutch photographer Ilona Kamps made a pledge to Alfonsina when she visited her grave for the first time in 2012. Inspired by Alfonsina’s resilience and courage, Kamps has dedicated the last five years to fulfilling her promise.

“I faced Alfonsina’s grave and promised I would tell her story to as many people as possible.”

1924 was a turbulent year for the Giro d’Italia. The build up to the 12th edition of the race was dominated by a backdrop of strikes forcing La Gazzetta dello Sport as organisers to open the field to independent riders. One of these ‘rookies’ was 33-year-old female rider Alfonsina Strada.

READ MORE
PINK PASS RIDE

PINK PASS RIDE

BE INSPIRED.

Inspired by women who have achieved the seemingly impossible and in the spirit of exploration, we asked our Melbourne-based Black Sheep to embark on a journey of human discovery. A four-day ride weekend for which they came up with a mixed terrain route through Marysville, Merrijig and Wangaratta, Victoria.

We said great, now do it with only what you can carry …

READ MORE
PAST MASTERS

PAST MASTERS

LA CLASSICISSIMA D’EPOCA.

For the professionals, the annual Milan-Sanremo at 298km (185.2 miles) is the longest one-day race in modern day cycling. That’s seven hours in the saddle for race winner Michal Kwiatkowski. A momentous early season test. Gruelling. At times tedious. Very often still in the midst of a bitter winter snap. Yet Kwiatkowski and his contemporaries enjoy the benefits of being a top-class rider – support vehicles, a team of loyal gregari, bikes constructed in the latest aviation technology, food and drink on ready demand. Nothing left to chance.

READ MORE
IN THE NAME OF THE ROSA

IN THE NAME OF THE ROSA

TO LEAD THE INDUSTRY, YOU NEED TO COLLABORATE WITH INDUSTRY LEADERS. BLACK SHEEP SOUGHT THE EXPERTISE OF MAGLIA ROSA FABRIC SUPPLIERS SITIP S.P.A TO HELP DEFINE A NEW ERA FOR THE ESSENTIALS COLLECTION.

The adventures of a fabric sourcer in the 21st century reach some very far, and at times, unromantic locations. The breaking of borders and the advancement of Asian production have meant that one can find themselves in the backblocks of Taipei, or beneath the smog of Eastern China to find some of the best innovation. But not every part of the industry has lost its heritage to commercialism. For warp-knit fabric, the lifeblood of cycling apparel, Italy still remains both the benchmark and the driver of this very important raw material.

READ MORE
FAUSTO COPPI.

FAUSTO COPPI.

THE LEGACY.

 

READ MORE
GIRO 100.

GIRO 100.

QUINTESSENTIALLY AND EMPHATICALLY ITALIAN, THE GIRO D'ITALIA IS PART RACE, PART PANTOMIME. IN THIS, ITS CENTENARY YEAR, WE CELEBRATE THE CORSA ROSA'S UNPARALLELED PANACHE AND UNPREDICTABLE HISTORY.

 

It’s tempting to think of the Giro d’Italia as a poor man’s Tour de France. By the time the inaugural edition rolled out of Milan in 1909, the transalpini had been up and running for six years. Whilst the Tour introduced its maillot jaune as early as 1923, Italians had need wait until 1931 for the maglia rosa. Italy routinely produced the better cyclists back then, but the Tour has always had more money and more prestige, and as such more of the world’s most talented riders. It has more of just about everything and as such, for the casual observer at least, it is the bike race. The Tour, as Italians are apt to lament, is the Tour. It’s the one race which transcends mere sport, a commercial juggernaut and a gigantic, high-summer pastiche of French grandeur. Seamlessly choreographed and immensely profitable, it’s everything that the Giro is not. A good deal bigger, then, but in professional sport bigger is very seldom better. For all its money-making acumen and all that it envelops an entire sporting continent, the reality is that the Tour has never been the Giro’s equal as a bicycle race. For over a century its route has been formulaic, its climate predictable, its racing anodyne by comparison.

READ MORE
VIVA ITALIA!

VIVA ITALIA!

GIRO 100

 

“As long as one rider finishes the race,
that's enough for me."
 

– Armando Cougnet, Giro d’Italia Organiser 1914.

READ MORE
NIGHT RIDERS

NIGHT RIDERS

YOU OWNED THE NIGHT.

 

Long after most of Brisbane was in bed, the city's cycling community was engaging in some hot racing, fast fun and good times a plenty. The inaugural Night Riders by Racing Club + Black Sheep went off. Big time. Green Beacon got slammed. Phatboys food truck fed a frenzied crowd. Levi Birks rocked 'em. And the racing went large. There were thrills. One spill. And smiles all round.

 

What was a fledging, slightly madcap idea just a matter of months, maybe even weeks, ago, had all of a sudden become a very brilliant reality on the Friday night just passed in Albion, Brisbane. As with everything we do at Black Sheep, the thanks goes to you – our spirited, enthusiastic community. You ignored the naysayers, dismissed those scared of the dark and snubbed the riders in the middle of massive training blocks to come out in your droves and enjoy a fun evening out. You owned the night. You made the night. Until next time … good night.

 

 

NIGHT RIDERS – RACE RESULTS

 

Women's Fast: Lou Betts

 

Men's Fast: Darcy Rosenland

 

Men's Medium: Adam Pelzer

 

Women's Slow: Mairi Mackinnon

 

Men's Slow: Wil Milford

READ MORE
SEASON X

SEASON X

LOOKING BACK TO MOVE FORWARD.

 

READ MORE
REFLECTION.

REFLECTION.

SEASON X.

 

READ MORE
PANTANI REMEMBERED.

PANTANI REMEMBERED.

A CHILD OF THE 1970S, MARCO PANTANI WAS HIGHLY TALENTED. HUGELY TROUBLED. BUT, HE WILL NEVER BE FORGOTTEN. ON THE 13TH ANNIVERSARY OF HIS DEATH, WE PAY TRIBUTE TO IL PIRATA.

READ MORE
THE NEW GUARD.

THE NEW GUARD.

In the first of a developing series titled Obsession of the Unknown, we hand the mic to an everyday hero. You don't know him nor he you. But we all share the same pursuit of a passion.

 

 

MY NAME IS KERRY WYLDE. CALL ME WILL. A 52 YEAR OLD, PLUMBER WHO LIVES ON THE GOLD COAST. CYCLING HAS MEANT EVERYTHING TO ME. FAMILY, FRIENDSHIP, A RELEASE FROM LIFE AND A LOT OF FLEETWOOD MAC. THIS IS MY STORY.

 

 

 

 

NORTH BOUND.

 

Originally from Victoria, I grew up playing cricket in the summer, Aussie Rules in the winter. Classic stuff. I look back on those years with the fondest of memories. The good ol' days. But as soon as I turned 21, I bought a Kombi van with the little money I had, grabbed my surf board and drove north. No game plan, just driving until I felt like stopping. I distinctly remember the day. Windows were wound down, singing along to Fleetwood Mac. Shit that was over 30 years ago, time flies.

READ MORE
TOUR DOWN UNDER.

TOUR DOWN UNDER.

THE MAGIC STARTS HERE.

 

The second half of the Tour Down Under is like late nights at a music festival; it’s where the magic happens. The crowd is crushing, everything gets sweaty, and you wouldn’t wish to be any other place in the world.

 

 

IT'S WRITTEN ON YOUR FACE.

Seeing someone completely let themselves go is a beautiful thing. Those initial reservations, fears and stresses slowly dissolve into confidence, serenity and pure pleasure. Watch as someone smiles, unprompted by conversation or human interaction, hoping that they will never let go of the feeling they have right now. Their head extends forward, their eyes and mouth open a little more. They are chasing. We all are.

 

THE PLACES WE SEE.

Those rolling hills with the almost abandoned tree standing tall by itself, in defiance. That winding road that almost caresses the old brick house as it slides on by. These are memories created by everything just fitting to the eye – your eye. It’s not the name we remember, it’s the emotion we feel.

 

IT'S BETTER TOGETHER.

Checkout the old dude laughing – hysterically. The girls just blabbering away and the guys talking complete and utter rubbish. Much like watching individual faces, it’s a beautiful thing watching a group of humans embrace each other with everyone in complete synchronicity going “fuck it, let’s have fun”. They did. We did.

 

 

 

It’s time to turn out the lights. Until next year.
READ MORE
BUILDING BEAUTY.

BUILDING BEAUTY.

THE ASSEMBLY.

 

STINNER BUILDS HANDMADE, CUSTOM BICYCLES THAT UNITE THEIR OWNERS WITH THE CALIFORNIA SPIRIT OF FREEDOM, FUN AND ADVENTURE. EACH STINNER IS UNIQUE; A MARRIAGE OF METAL AND SOUL – FINE-TUNED TO DELIGHT AND INSPIRE ITS RIDER.

AND THE PEOPLE AROUND THEM.

 

This a backstage pass to the assembly and build of the Black Sheep | Stinner team bikes.

READ MORE
TOUR DOWN UNDER

TOUR DOWN UNDER

MAKING MEMORIES.

 

The Tour Down Under is a sporting pilgrimage unrivalled in Australia. A festival like atmosphere which is a celebration of our sport, and not just the professional sporting event to which its name is attached. It's the people that come to Adelaide, that venture into the hills and feast on local fare that truly make this event. It’s not a sporting event built on the attraction of celebrity or allegiance – a small bonus for those who could give two shits. This event is solely built on the emotional connection each and every rider has for cycling. A connection that has fostered lifestyles and personalities. This is a life. Their life. And it means the world to them.

 

During the first few of days of this year's event, our team of photographers have jumped into our daily bunchies and documented our journey. While the intention was always to have Black Sheep cover the Tour from an ‘our alternate perspective', what we didn’t expect was the depth and the beauty we've experienced. We have documented the accomplishment of life long dreams, of ticking notches off bucket lists, or overcoming personal boundaries once thought impossible. We want to share with you just some of the experiences we have been privileged to be part of this week. See our Facebook Page for daily galleries.

 

 

FACES.

 

Exhaustion is a beautiful thing. It takes people to their most vulnerable state – no ability to hide what they are truly feeling. It’s here you discover what something really means to them. This week we have seen agony and doubt. But we have also seen elation and pride. Experiences can seen in the face of cyclist.

 

 

PLACES.

 

You don’t need us to tell you about South Australia’s natural beauty, but we will let our photography do the talking. Everywhere you go is a celebration of the finer things in life. The rolling vineyards. The meandering fields of dairy cows. The beauty is that here, in this place, you are on the doorstep of the artisan.

 

 

RIDES.

 

Let’s take a moment. A moment to reflect on a European heritage that has created some of the most exquisite roads in Australia. At times you could be in the foothills of a European countryside. Other times you could be on the exposed roads of an Alpine pass. Yet time again you are reminded of Australia, and how bloody beautiful it is. Earthy orange rock carved canyons, or the hay-baled lined open roads. Adelaide is a cyclists' playground. Simple.

READ MORE
THE OCHRE FLORAL CAP.

THE OCHRE FLORAL CAP.

FOREVER FLOURISHING.

 

In 1836, a bunch of wealthy English aristocrats came and settled in a sleepy inlet on the south coast of Australia, now known as Adelaide. A land rich in diversity and history far beyond its short history of settlement. A land that was once inhabited by the indigenous Kaurna people, thriving off the orange land and its coastal ecosystem.

 
 
READ MORE
TOUR DOWN UNDER

TOUR DOWN UNDER

BIG THINGS GROW.

 

Today, with some justification, the Tour Down Under (TDU) promotes itself as ‘the biggest cycling race in the southern hemisphere’. Its status as the first non-European event to earn UCI World Tour status stripes, the quality and depth of the competing teams, the humongous crowds in Adelaide, the incredible atmosphere, and the sizeable income the event drives leaves it hard to counter this slogan.

 

The race’s distinctive slot in the cycling calendar is a draw, notably for the European riders. November, the glorious four-week window of binge drinking, Jägerbombs and burger stacks now a foggy memory. Lonely Christmas training camps, marked by evenings spent watching Breaking Bad boxsets and negotiating an intermittent Facetime connection endured. Southern Australia’s warm weather and the race’s short, intense schedule are ideal ingredients to reboot. And let’s face it, nobody wants to be in Europe in January.

READ MORE