Gaerne have given 11 of their sponsored riders their own customised top-of-the-line Carbon G-Myst shoes.
According to the company, each of the shoes "exemplifies the original style, tastes and personalities of its featured rider".
They range from young Belgian road champion – and Harley Davidson fan – Jurgen Roelandts' pair, featuring a dual-cylinder engine, to Cadel Evans' shoes with Aboriginal-style 'dot art' graphics.
These '11 riders make their mark' special editions will not go on general sale, but are technically identical to the standard Carbon G.Myst, which is available in four colours – black, silver, grey, and white.
The riders and their shoes
1. Belgian road champion Jurgen Roelandts: Dual-cylinder engine motif, with exhaust fumes in the colours of the Belgian flag.
2. Australian former UCI ProTour winner Cadel Evans: “Dot art” graphics on the upper, Australian colours on the rear and wallabies on the sides.
3. Austrian national champion Christian Pfannberger: Two of the most famous symbols of Austria, the Prater ferris wheel and Vienna’s skyline (designed by agent and friend Marcuzzo Roberto of Maroitalia.com).
4. Dario Cataldo, of the Quick-Step team: Graffiti-style with arrows and objectives leading towards the word 'Arrivo' (finish line).
5. Matteo Tosatto, Quick-Step: Right shoe shows the night, with a castle, bats and nightlife. Left shows daytime, with the sun and the Dolomite mountains, and Matteo’s nickname, Toso.
6. Giairo Ermeti, LPR: Same green as his team jersey, with his name on the left shoe and his fiancee’s name on the right.
7. Wouter Weylandt, Quick-Step: Filmstrip.
8. Charlie Wegelius, Silence-Lotto: A gondola’s prow (symbolising the start of the Giro d’Italia) and a stylised Eiffel Tower (the arrival of the Tour de France), along with the number 6895 (combined length in kilometres of the 2009 Giro and Tour). The shoes also feature a road design, two rings (Charlie is to marry his fiancee in August), the flags of Britain and Finland, and the Chinese ideogram for a horse. At the end of the Tour de France, the shoes, designed by Federico Damiani, will be auctioned for www.childliverdisease.org.
9. World time trial champion Bert Grabsch: Rainbow theme.
10. Tony Colom, Katusha: Half black and half white, to show that life is never one-sided and there is always another perspective.
11. Kevin de Weert, Quick-Step: Belgian national colours.