Jerseys of the Tour de France

The first Tour de France
The finish line of the first
Tour de France in 1903. Winner
Maurice Garin is the one in the
white woolen shirt with shorts. 

The Tour de France, perhaps the world’s most famous bicycle race started July 5. Each day until July 27, cyclists from around the globe will compete to win one of four prestigious jerseys, given out at the end of each stage.  Each jersey has a different color and meaning, but they all represent excellence. In honor of this famous race and its iconic clothing, this BeWeave It, originally published July 6, 2012, is dedicated to the history of cycling jerseys

When the race started in 1903, cyclists wore woolen jerseys. While today this might seem heavy and itchy, wool was actually the best choice at the time as it wicks away moisture from the skin. Unfortunately, its absorbency also makes it lose its shape and adds to its weight. In the 1940s, silken jerseys became the rage. They were lighter, cooler, and aesthetically pleasing. 

In the 1980s, synthetic fabric jerseys became standard, and they remain the standard today. Today's jerseys are made from the latest sports fabric by the French company Le Coq Sportif. These high-tech textiles help regulate body temperature and are designed to be as aerodynamic—and as comfortable—as possible. 

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