If you’ve paid attention to any cycling news recently, it was hard to miss the social media response to the Colombian cycling kit. Worn during a race in Italy where the elite women’s Colombian team competed in Giro della Toscana last weekend, the “nude” uniforms had people from all walks of life giving their opinions. Contrary to some reports, the team was endorsed by Colombia’s sports ministry and sponsored by the city of Bogota but is not the national team. Observers took to Twitter to voice their concerns over the “rude”, “inappropriate”, and “disaster” of a flesh-colored fabric that happened to sit on the women’s lower region of their bodies. To some, the nude color was horrifying and to others, the criticism was completely dramatized.
One of the team members, Angie Rojas, responded to the critics regarding the flesh-colored section of the fabric that sat between the thighs and stomach. She stated in a news conference in Bogota, “I’ve already said that I designed the uniform and as an athlete, as a woman, as the cyclist that I am, I wouldn’t be ashamed with this kind of design”. Rojas has had an incredibly accomplished career as a professional athlete, winning national titles in both cycling and skating. She also tweeted a response to the controversy, “The uniform may not be the most beautiful and we may not like it, but there’s no need for certain comments.”
The funny thing is that not only have these women been wearing this cycling kit for the last nine months, but the fabric is actually gold in color, not the reported nude. Apparently, the Lycra material photographs poorly and is the reason that the gold color appeared to be nude. While we were under the impression that the criticism stopped at social media and consumer-based platforms, even the UCI President, Brian Cookson, had something to say about the uniforms. In a tweet, Cookson said, “To the many who have raised the issue of a certain women’s team kit, we are on the case. It is unacceptable by any standard of decency”.
What is your opinion regarding the cycling kit for the Colombian women’s team? Was it inappropriate or simply an exaggerated response from the public? What about Cookson’s response? Was his reaction warranted? Please share your thoughts in the comment box below.