We recently added a new manufacturing facility in the Veneto region of Italy to complement our Leicester factory. Leicester will continue to make our Merino Perform range, with the premium Custom and Performance wear manufactured in Italy. So why here?
Italy has a strong claim on being the spiritual home of cycling, in fact we’ve blogged about this in the past, and the Veneto region is its cycling products manufacturing capital with Campagnolo, Pinarello, Fi'z:k, Wilier, Sidi, Sportful, Castelli, Alè, Fondriest, Basso, Selle Italia, Selle San Marco and Miche among the 60+ factories based in the region.
They produce top riders too. Lots of them. Famous locals include former champions Alessandro Ballan, Francesco Moser, Maurizio Fondriest, Moreno Argentin and Gianni Bugno. And current pros include Elia Viviani, Enrico Gasparotto and Daniel Oss. Add to this roughly 20,000 amateur racers and over 900 cycling clubs and you can see why the Vento region is known in Italy as the homeland of cycling.
I first visited back in 2004 on a two-week cycle tour which took us from Venice to Lake Garda, up to the Dolomites then back to Venice. It was a real eye opener for me, particularly as our second day was a Sunday. Sunday is cycling day in the Veneto and we witnessed thousands of cyclists of all kinds, including families, local pros, granfondo riders and retro aficionados in woollen jerseys on vintage bikes. The Ciclo Ombre were an interesting group, these tend to be older riders, often in full team kit, who spend the day riding from bar to bar enjoying the local tipples.
The new factory makes Shutt's bib-shorts and performance range as well as the custom kits for teams and clubs. Because it's a small operation, we can turn around orders super quickly and at short notice.