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Second life for UCI cycling event bibs

Nylon warp knitted fabric the base for print versatility and post-use regranulation.

30th July 2023

Innovation in Textiles
 |  Bergamo, Italy

Sports/​Outdoor, Sustainable

A full supply chain based exclusively in the Bergamo region of Italy was assembled to produce the bibs of the 2023 UCI Cycling World Championships which will take place in Scotland from August 3-13.

With a specific focus on eco-design, cyclewear specialist Santini, as the event partner, joined forces with local companies Acerbis, EFI Reggiani, RadiciGroup and Sitip for the project.

The fabrics for the bibs, which will be worn by all officials, are based on RadiciGroup nylon, as an infinitely recyclable thermoplastic material which allows for easy and high-quality printing.

RadiciGroup yarns were turned into a 95gsm warp-knitted fabric by Sitip – specifically designed to meet the transfer printing requirements of EFI Reggiani, which tested a wide range of fabrics to find the best colour results and the best resistance to rubbing and perspiration for the intended use.

In addition to using new GOTS-certified Iris Plus water-based inks, EFI Reggiani opted for a printing solution on transfer paper that does not consume water and requires a minimal amount of energy per square metre.

Santini was responsible for transferring all the graphics for the 2023 UCI Cycling World Championships bibs from the paper to the fabric and assembled the garments using only thread and components made from nylon or chemically similar materials, allowing the bibs to enter the recycling process without any further processing.

At the end of the 2023 UCI Cycling World Championships in Glasgow and across Scotland, the bibs used over the course of the eleven days will be collected and transformed into X-Elite protective handguards which are attached to the handlebars of mountain bikes by Acerbis.

RadiciGroup has already verified that the recycling process is technically feasible at its plants specialising in the regranulation of recovered materials.

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