Mirthe’s Cycling Wardrobe
This week, Stefanie takes a look at Mirthe’s cycling wardrobe. She works at what she considers the most fun department at Mantel: Wear. Mirthe is one of the youngest people working at Mantel at just 18 years old. She’s originally from Hardenberg, but she came to Arnhem just to train for her sport full-time at Papendal.
How did you end up at Mantel?
I lived on site at Papendal (the Dutch centre for professional athletes in a variety of sports) to train with the Dutch national team as much as I could. After two years, I quit cycling for the Dutch team and stuck around in Arnhem.
I was looking for work and heard about a job vacancy at Mantel. What could be better than turning your passion into your job?!
So you caught the cycling bug well before you ended up at Mantel?
I started cycling back when I was 7. Every weekend, I’d travel all around the country -or even Europe- with my parents, sister and brother to ride races. Ten years ago, I started racing my road bike.
I even spent two years riding for the Dutch national team on the track. Now I just ride my bike for fun, and only when the sun’s out.
Amazing to hear the level at which you rode. As a fair weather cyclist, you don’t spend much time outside on the bike during winter?
You’d think I’d love the winter season, as track racing is a winter sport in the Netherlands, but I still much prefer the summer instead.
It’s just so much better to ride your bike in a short sleeved jersey and some bibshorts, enjoying the warmth of the sun!
As an experienced rider, you won’t get on the bike without proper cycling kit, be it in summer or winter. Do you have a favourite brand?
I really like Castelli. I have a lot of personal experience with their kits and I really like the way they’re made. The finish is always immaculate.
Do you have a favourite pair of bibshorts or tights?
The Castelli Velocissima is my favourite! I often got bibshorts and tights from clubs or the team I rode with, but now that I’ve experienced the Velocissima I wouldn’t want anything else!
What’s your favourite jersey or jacket?
My favourite jacket is the Castelli Cromo. It fits beautifully, has two layers, and two zippers which all make it extra warm and windproof. Perfect if you ask me!
It’s definitely a nice jacket. Cool-looking too! Do you wear base layers?
I always wear a base layer because the Netherlands are often too cold to ride without one. I also don’t like the feeling of the shoulder straps over my skin.
I always had one exception to that rule, which was during races on the track. I never wore base layers during one of those.
Doesn’t look right I can imagine, since the track suit is so tight-fitting. Besides what you have, do you still have a wishlist for other items?
I’d really like to try some bibshorts by Assos, as I always hear good things about those which makes me curious to try one.
Do you participate in any other sports besides cycling?
Besides cycling, I also run quite a lot. The main difference is that you need far fewer layers when you’re running. You get hot a lot quicker and cool down less.
What’s the best place you’ve ever ridden your bike?
The best routes I’ve ridden are up the Alpe d’Huez and Stelvio. Both took quite their toll, but once you’re up there enjoying the view, it’s just fantastic.
Anywhere you still really want to go?
I’m going to France this year to climb Mont Ventoux, which completes my list of mountains to climb!
Something to work towards! Do you have any tips for our readers?
Invest in a proper bibshort with good padding!
Proper padding prevents injuries and allow you to ride comfortably all day. A proper short for the rain is the Castelli Nanoflex of Sportful Fiandre.
Final question: if you were in my shoes, would there be anything you’d change in our range of products?
I wouldn’t add any new brands, as I think the brands we currently carry are great and look good too. I would broaden the range of products in our women’s collection though.
This was Mirthe’s cycling wardrobe
Thanks for letting us take a look at your cycling wardrobe, and all the best of luck up Mont Ventoux. Soon, I’ll be checking out yet another cycling wardrobe of one of our colleagues…