At an event where the most interesting fashion statement of the weekend was made by one of its competitors moments before participating (the young Repsol Honda rider Nicky Hayden in a rather jaunty trilby style hat, the kind FCUK have in store at the moment) the style bar was disappointed to find that most of the colour happens on the track itself rather than on the field.
Buyers of bike gear appear to be a most practical bunch – by and large the colour of choice for their riding outfits is all over black, which in itself is not such an unusual choice I will grant you. When you consider the practicalities of riding a vehicle that leaves you completely exposed to the elements and, in many cases for the Grand Prix event, sitting around and/or camping in muddy paddocks enduring artic winds without a washing machine in sight, this would probably be your choice too.
But a little splash of colour would liven things up enormously – a blue scarf, a flash of red jumper, nothing frivolous necessarily, just something to liven the sea of darkness that greeted me upon my arrival at the grandstand on the first cold and rainy day. Apart from yours truly in my bright YK Blue cropped jacket that granted would offer no protection on a motorbike but was perfectly appropriate for the less rigorous demands of spectating.
Now consider the contrast if the setting where to be transplanted to the snowfields. A sea of fluorescent pinks and greens and hideous yellows, interspersing the white and black of the jackets and pants. Rather like the bus queues I passed a few weeks ago full of teenagers on their way to the Parklife concert, wholeheartedly embracing the Back to the 80s trend of outrageous colour (only because, as we all know, they are too young to have been through it all the first time).
But it actually created a much more fun and upbeat feeling in the crowd. Another of those examples of colour being able to lift your spirits and even send out vibes of excitement (a theory I have explored in an earlier post Mood Enhancers in the Colour Theory category).
At any rate I did manage to find a couple of style aficionados on race day, two of whom had interestingly chosen orange as their attention grabbing colour, and then tempered it by coordinating it back with grey marle and denim.
Cute orange wellies with a great grey jersey trench style jacket on one, and on the other a orange and white sweat top, with jeans and a little grey cap. Both comfortable but stylish choices, appropriate to an outdoor event and offering protection from the elements at the same time.
By day’s end the field was more alive with colour, after fans had paid their visit to the team merchandise stands to purchase the jacket or cap of their favourite rider, so perhaps the influence of the teams’ bright and cheeky colours had taken effect after all. With any luck they will wear their new pieces next year and give the rider’s a run for their money…