In a world of mass production, the new Babici Squadra Veloce is kit for a king. Crafted from no less than three of the finest Italian fabrics, the SQV jersey and knicks are to cycling apparel what Georgio Armani is to suits. SQV sets the industry benchmark for pro level kit. It’s born of style and class and makes you feel fast!
In addition to the smart design and styling, the concept behind SQV is to craft a pro level kit, make it available to everyone, and create a global virtual cycling team for the aspiring pro. Babici have advised, that in the near future, by racing in SQV kit, team members have the opportunity to be part of a global initiative and be rewarded for their hard work.
According to Babici Founder, Kev Babakian, it is the attention to detail which sets his garments apart and the SQV is no exception. In fact, when I picked up the kit from the Babici studio, Kev made a point to check the packing, the labelling, but most importantly the garments themselves, to confirm the final design changes were carried through and the quality was as expected.
The SQV is designed in Australia by Babici, and they sources the finest textiles from Italy’s most advanced mills. The main jersey material is high wick and ultralight but able to support crisp and sharp colours and artwork. Given the ultralight weave you’d be forgiven for thinking you might need to wear sunscreen underneath but, again, the unique properties of this fabric provide a SPF of 50+. The side panels on the jersey are made from an ultra-breathable fabric that extends up under the armpit and down the inside of the sleeve, resulting in an remarkably cool jersey void of that heavy perspiration-soaked feeling.
Babici Squadra Veloce – Pro Grade Kit
The grippers on both the jersey and knicks are light and stretchable, but also rigid and durable through the use of carbon fibre woven into the gripper itself.
The SQV knicks employ a one piece 3D chamois made by Dolomiti in Italy. It is laser cut from a single piece of high tech foam which provides moisture transfer, ensuring you never get a wet chamois. Even after several hours of riding I found the knicks to be as comfortable as when I started riding and certainly dryer than any other knicks I have tried.
Squadra Veloce – Detailed Design
The SQV jersey and knicks ooze style. Ignoring the high tech features and materials for a moment, the kit has the understated simplicity and sophistication that Babici do so well. Babici has a worldwide reputation for exceptional style and quality, and the SQV kit has enriched this reputation even more.
The SQV kit is a race fit, meaning the jersey is tight fitting and a little shorter than normal, to eliminate jersey drag and to producing a comfortable fit even after considerable time on the drops.
While we tend to focus on the technical benefits of jersey and knick materials – such as the jerseys’ wicking ability – the excellent fit of the SQV is due to both the innovative cut and the performance textiles used. Make no mistake, the jersey is a snug race fit and unless you are lean and trim, it might be a drawback for some cyclists. Then again, that’s what SQV is all about, providing pro race kit.
The pro grippers on both the knicks and jersey result in excellent garment retention on the legs and arms. I noticed this more on the arms as, like most cyclists, my arms are skinny and often the sleeve grippers hang off and flap in the wind.
The SQV jersey and knick set retail for around $350 (AUD). When it comes to how much you pay for kit, most cyclists tend to look for mid-range apparel or whatever is on sale. The SQV has shown me that for an extra $100-$150 you can get the best AND feel the best. Considering the many thousands of dollars cyclists spend on bikes or wheels, $100-$150 does not seem like much of a premium to pay for comfort, performance and style.
The Squadra Veloce pro race kit is inspiring! Think of your favourite jersey or knicks, why do you love them? Because they feel great, look great and work great. Without one of these key attributes they won’t be your favourite. The SQV seamlessly integrates these attributes to produce something that inspires you to ride your bike, the kit makes you want to train, to race… to be your the best.
– Lachlan Mackay