New RIDE socks: black or white
RIDE Socks: good for your feet
Over the years, the length has slowly increased but this time around we’ve added a whole two inches so that you no longer have to stretch them to get them where you want them to be. Yes, we recognise that there was a time when cycling socks were short and white but the 1980s are over, man. It’s time to move on.
And yes, we’ve taken the plunge and have finally produced a black RIDE sock… after years of resistance – and a few half-hearted attempts to stray into contemporary trends (when we released a half-white/half-black option – there are now two distinct designs: white or black.
* * * * *
Back in 2001 it was becoming apparent that the trend of longer socks was growing and RIDE even posed a question about this fashion on the cover (of issue #12): “Long or Short? Our survey reveals what’s going on with sock length these days.”
Eleven years later the debate still rages but the consensus seems to be that mid-ankle is close to the “correct” length… but it’s fun to revisit the spread that included a vox-pop of riders who offered their thoughts on the subject.
Here’s a little flashback to RIDE #12 (April 2001).
• Frankie Andreu: “In my mind the Italians started the long sock thing. My first run-in with long socks was with Max Sciandri on Motorola. We teased the heck out of him. I think the first rider I remember with long socks was Massimo Ghirotto. The following year George Hincapie came on the team and Defeet made him some long ones. He passed them out and I love them. I wear long, just over the ankle but below the calf. Check out Tyler Hamilton – sometimes he wears them up to his calves! There is a limit.”
• Stuart O’Grady: “I have seen long socks worn – mostly by the Italians who love a sock half-way up their calf muscles. I think it’s because they don’t have big legs. If you see guys with big legs, it’s usually the short option. Brett Aitken is the shortest sock wearing cyclist on the planet. I think he takes the socks out of the baby’s basket at home! He is the Master of no socks! Our team is sponsored by Nalini, who make a great sock – just normal length. I don’t rate high socks: it looks a bit over the top. But I also don’t rate the no-sock look either… too weird.”
• Cadel Evans: “Short or medium, personally. That is just what I’m used to and I have a wide ankle bone and Soleas, so my ankles look fat with the smallest of socks. You would be amazed at how many comments I get about this: I just tell them I am a freak. To be honest, I think that if someone is worried about sock height, or rates sock height – using a points system… seriously, it is dinner table conversation during stage races – I think they should go and get a life! I can understand your curiosity about such an insignificant detail. Sadly the impression of one under-23 national team member who raced with black socks that came just below the knee has not left my memory. Do I need to go and get a life?”