The Rule on Wearing Team Jerseys… The Side Rule That Shall Not Be Broken, Lest You Incur Good-natured Verbal Abuse and Laughter for the Infraction
Ladies and gentlemen, I realized I made a severe, egregious even, mistake in omitting one small item in my post the other day in which I reviewed my new Ducati Corse team jersey:
That’s one badass jersey, baby.
In that post, I wrote that it is becoming increasingly acceptable to wear your favorite team’s jersey as a show of support. Wearing team kit is not directly against Rule #17 which only states team kit is questionable if one isn’t paid to wear it. I think wearing team kit has become far less questionable… as long as it isn’t a zebra or leopard print. In that case, f***, dude.
There is, however, one rule which must not be broken pertaining to team kit:
Rule #16 must not be broken. Respect the jersey. Do NOT wear world or national championship kit. There is a reason for adhering to this rule. It is very simple and easily illustrated with an experience from my cycling past.
August 3, 2013 (just two years after I started cycling)
I was riding in the Tour des Lac, starting and ending in Fenton, Michigan. 100 miles of fun, and they stuck almost all of the hills at the end. We had a five-man crew comprised of myself, three of my friends, and the German National Champion. His kit said so, right down to his National Champion socks. He was an animal, often pulling for three or four miles at a time, north of 23-mph. By the time we hit 60 miles, I was hurting but I wasn’t about to give up the draft, so I rolled on. A few miles later I was into my second wind and feeling better.
We pulled into a rest stop at the 70 mile mark. I stopped, then my buddy, Phill stopped right next to me… and here comes the German National Champion who was absolutely smoked after just 70 miles with just over 21-mph for an average. He had cycling brain big time and failed to hit his brakes, thereby sliding right into Phill’s rear wheel. Phill didn’t go down though the German Champ did. He also taco’ed Phill’s wheel in the process.
Phill was taken out by the German National Champion. At a rest stop. 70 miles into what would be an easy, boring spin for the real German National Champ. Because he was too tired to pull on his brake lever.
We still laugh about Phill being taken out by the guy… the story gets better every time it’s told and we laugh just a little harder.
You don’t want to be that person. Respect the championship jersey. You’re not good enough or fast enough to wear it. Unless you won it.
Trust me on this one point.
Actually, I don’t even know why they sell them… I can’t believe anyone would be crazy enough to even buy one knowing one mistake in that kit and you’re laughed at. Forever.