Video, Fake Cycling Kit

When something looks too good to be true, it usually is.

So a Rapha brand cycling shirt for £9 plus postage was always going to be slightly dodgy - but how bad could it be?

I bought one to find out.

My parents used to own fashion shops and, back in the day, the factories which made designer dresses would often make extra, tweak a few things, then sell them as their own.  It was called "cabbage" - no idea why.

I wondered whether this could be the case here because, looking at the photo of the shirts sold on the highly reputable website, they looked close to the real thing. I added the price tag.

If you're thinking, "if you're daft enough to expect to get a £120 Rapha shirt for £9 then you deserve what's coming to you", then let me be clear - it's not just Rapha kit.  There is a wide range of cycling kit for sale on the highly reputable website

I have no idea how much of it is fake.  But hey, how bad could it be?  Let me show you.  This is a genuine Rapha Brevet Jersey.

Real Rapha
Here is what arrived from the highly reputable website - it was supposed to be the one in the photo above.  You get a better idea of it in the video.

It's thin and very nylon.  For a top to wear on the turbo, it's fine and perhaps £12.90 isn't too much to pay.  But it's most definitely not a Rapha shirt.  If you'd ordered brand name shorts or tights, then I suspect the pad would be low quality.

I immediately reported it as counterfeit to the highly reputable website using their automated customer service tool and was promised a reply within two working days.  Three days later I tried again.  No result either time.

So I tried again and plastered it on Twitter and Instagram - copying in the genuine Rapha, who responded.  Within hours I received a refund.

As of writing, all the fake cycling kit is still being sold openly on the highly reputable website.  I have deactivated my account.


Abalem said...

Thank you for having gone through this for us ! ^^ I saw that today, and I guess I just needed to read your article after that. Cheers

Simon Willis said...

Glad you liked it. The shirt is still lying around somewhere - pretty useless.

ciara said...

Thank you so much Simon, I was just getting sucked into maybe really perhaps getting the greatest Rapha deal ever on Wish! I needed to read your research to be reminded that you do get what you pay for. I really don't want to support fake goods, which is basically slavery... Thanks again!

Russell said...

I suspected it was fake but gave it a go as it was so cheap! Mine looks very much like yours. Might give it a go on a ride though for a laugh.

Simon Willis said...

I thought about riding in it, but it's a really nasty nylon so I'm saving it for a turbo session first. Or perhaps a duster...

martyn herman said...

I bought one for nine quid . Sort of guessed it would be fake and surely is but it’s not terrible either so will wear it a few times until it falls apart !

Simon Willis said...

Hopefully better than mine - still unworn!