I was watching the Giro early this morning. Really early. 4:30 AM. A mountain stage in inclement weather. Rain. Snow. Wind. It was terrible. But I noticed many of the riders were wearing a casquette.
Casquette is French for “cap” and, in the cycling world, is the cotton peaked cap worn by racers. Unfortunately, they have gone out of fashion since the mandatory use of helmets in 2003. Back in the 60s, 70’s and 80s they were worn as a badge of honour during the tours and enthusiastically shared with screaming, roadside fans as riders rolled into the small Spanish, Italian and French towns. These days, few racers wear them and, if they do, they are covered by the helmet and never thrown to the adorning roadside fans.
Today, they are more a fashion statement for the urban cyclist, the fixie crowd.
I still wear one. Perhaps old habits never die or, maybe, just maybe, they make sense when on the bike. They are comfortable. They keep the rain, sweat and sun out of your eyes. And, they just look good. On the bike. And, in a cafe with a post-ride coffee.
I love these and bought a cotton one at the London bike show. Its kept my melon warm on more than one occasion on a spring morning and I even wore it without my helmet over it for one of my commutes (needless to say that I resisted the urge to throw it to my adoring fans…). I’ve also got an adapted winter one that folds down the back to keep my ears and neck warm. We really oughta reclaim these caps from the fixie crowd!
That’s why I wrote this post. I am surprised more cyclists don’t wear them. I use them on all my bikes.
Spread the word!
love cycling caps! i have about a dozen usually wear them after i ride or sometimes when i ride, i like the vintage looking ones cinelli, binanchi, my favorite is my chis king cielo
Wow. You have more than me. I also have a vintage Cinelli. It must be 35 years old now and badly (nicely) worn. It has been snagged by my son who wears it in the shop mostly.