HTC-Highroad and other team kit leaked on internet
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Monday, December 13, 2010

HTC-Highroad and other team kit leaked on internet

by Shane Stokes at 6:04 AM EST   comments
Categories: Pro Cycling
Sneak previews in advance of official team launches

It’s hard to know if they are breaking a team embargo or doing so with the blessing of their management, but several leaks of team clothing have been distributed via social media. HTC Highroad riders were the latest to give a sneak peek of what they will be wearing next season, with Irish national champion Matt Brammeier and Mark Renshaw releasing shots of Mark Cavendish in recent days, the Manx sprinter clad in the 2011 team kit and riding a penny farthing bike.

Mark Cavendish Penny Farthing

Brammeier followed that up yesterday with a photo of him in the national champion’s colours, then Mark Renshaw uploaded a very peculiar shot of him wearing the 2011 kit and sitting in a fake electric chair. He also released images of the jersey and shorts placed on his bed.

The kit, which is predominantly white and features vertical cross-chest bands of black, yellow and green, is quite different to this year’s design. The riders have been issued with black shorts, sparing blushes in wet weather.

Matt Brammeier HTC

Matt Renshaw electric chair

HTC team kit 2011

What’s worth considering is that the team’s main sponsor HTC builds smartphones. It is therefore conceivable that the leaks were authorised in order to underline how the social media platform works in capturing and disseminating information.

In recent days, other team-related shots have been circulating on the internet. The Kenda Pro Cycling team gave a peek of its new jersey, while Team Type 1 mechanic Andy Stone took a preview shot of the car colour scheme.

Kenda Pro jersey 2011

Team Type 1 car
The website Cyclism’Actu carried shots of the Androni Giocattoli jersey and shorts, continuing the sneak previews in advance of the team launch. And the Rabosport shop is already taking orders for the 2011 team kit, which was unveiled at the recent Rabobank team launch.

Androni Giocattoli 2011

Rabobank cycling 2011

So do these leaks work, in terms of publicity? That can be argued either way – they clearly generate interest amongst those who can follow such developments on the internet, but that must be counterbalanced by the lack of suspense when the kit is officially unveiled at the team presentations.

What’s likely is that more sneak previews will occur before the start of the season. Camera phones, Twitter accounts and other such platforms mean that the images can be taken, and released, in a matter of seconds. That leaves the path open for impulse decisions which might, or might not, be approved beforehand by team management.


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