Serious riders, however, are clothed in sleek, tight cycling jerseys that do more than simply look good, said former Little 500 Race Director Pam Loebig.
“That cotton T-shirt would get wet from your sweat and just sit on you,” Loebig said. “A cycling jersey will pull that sweat away from your skin, and then that fabric dries quickly. It will evaporate your sweat faster, which is more comfortable.”
Cycling jerseys also fit more snugly, cutting down on wind resistance. Cycling shorts can also provide more comfort to riders, as opposed to regular shorts with constrictive elastic and slightly uncomfortable waistbands.
On race day, Little 500 riders have used cycling jerseys for about two decades, but in recent years, teams have been using personalized practice jerseys a great deal.
Acacia rider Greg Bortz said a large amount of thought goes into the design of these jerseys, whether they’re for a Greek team or an independent team. Acacia tweaks its jerseys every two or three years but always keeps the distinctive black-and-gold look, Bortz said.
“I know with a fraternity, your house colors, it’s a big deal,” Bortz said. “It’s definitely a cool pride thing because our T-shirts for people coming to watch us are always the same colors, too.”
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