Louis Garneau debuts flagship Course collection
By James Huang in Park City, Utah | Saturday, July 28, 2012 5.21pm
Louis Garneau will offer two Course flagship jerseys for 2013: the standard Race version at left and the ultralight Superleggera at right with more mesh James Huang/BikeRadar
Louis Garneau's 2013 range will be topped by a new Course limited edition of high-end apparel, which will include jerseys, a vest, shorts, road shoes, and even a helmet.
Aimed at fit cyclists, both Course jerseys feature a 'next to skin' fit, Coldblack sun-reflective fabric treatments to reduce heat build-up, full-length zippers, angled rear pockets with media ports, laser-cut arm openings, pre-shaped shoulders, and a wide rear hem with silicone grippers to keep the garment in place.
While the Course Race jersey is built with a more conventional mix of wicking and mesh fabrics, nearly half of the ultralight Course Superleggera jersey is constructed of highly breathable and very open mesh for use on super hot days. That open mesh isn't as protective as the more solid panels, though, so users will want to apply sunscreen.
Women will also get a pair of Course jerseys but the standard variant will be sleeveless.
Cooler days will call for the innovative Course Speedzone vest, whose unique construction is entirely cut out at the lower back for easy access to underlying jersey pockets. A wide rear hem with silicone grippers – the same as what's used on the jerseys – helps the vest retain its shape and prevents the otherwise open hem from flapping about.
The Course Race and Course Superleggera bib shorts again place a high emphasis on a trim, efficient fit with the latter built with a lighter and more minimal construction to both reduce weight and increase ventilation in very hot conditions. Meanwhile, the women's Course Race shorts use a wide, yoga pant-style waistband instead of bibs.
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The Course helmet is Louis Garneau's take on the aerodynamic road helmet. According to Louis Garneau, computational fluid dynamics testing suggests improved airflow over the rider's head thanks to trimmed-down and more rounded profiles at the rear of the helmet plus straighter paths for the internal channels.
Whether or not those CFD calculations yield real-world time savings remains to be seen but the more aerodynamics-focused design has certainly produced what looks to be more efficient cooling. Ultra-deep channels run uninterrupted from front to back with only paper-thin louvers of the internal reinforcement structure holding the helmet's ribs together. Out back is Louis Garneau's familiar Spiderlock Pro II retention system and claimed weight is 250g.
Finally, there's the new Course 2LS road shoe, which passes over the company's typical ratcheting main strap-plus-two layout in favor of two BOA reels – one to secure the shoe around the ankle and the other to adjust the middle and forefoot fit. According to Louis Garneau, moving to the BOA system not only provides a more even fit but also reduces weight of the closure system by more than half.
Other features include the company's latest Exo Jet ventilated carbon fiber outsole, replaceable heel tread, and interchangeable Ice Fil insoles treated with a refrigerant that activates when wet. Claimed weight is 240g per shoe.
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