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Katusha launches clothing brand in conjunction with pro team

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Katusha Sports launched with three styles of clothing

Katusha Sports launched with three styles of clothing (Image credit: Ben Delaney/Immediate Media)
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Katusha - the name of the Russian team, and the name of the Swiss-based clothing

Katusha - the name of the Russian team, and the name of the Swiss-based clothing (Image credit: Courtesy Katusha Sports)
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The "Breakaway" pieces are clearly inspired by Team Katusha's design

The "Breakaway" pieces are clearly inspired by Team Katusha's design (Image credit: Courtesy Katusha Sports)
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Ride to live

Ride to live (Image credit: Ben Delaney/Immediate Media)
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The baselayer goes for 75 Euros

The baselayer goes for 75 Euros (Image credit: Ben Delaney/Immediate Media)
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A range of matching accessories are also available online

A range of matching accessories are also available online (Image credit: Ben Delaney/Immediate Media)
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Katusha's sytle is clearly new school, with long sleeves in the SS model

Katusha's sytle is clearly new school, with long sleeves in the SS model (Image credit: Ben Delaney/Immediate Media)
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Katusha Sports uses 37.5 fabric in its baselayer, jersey and bib straps

Katusha Sports uses 37.5 fabric in its baselayer, jersey and bib straps (Image credit: Ben Delaney/Immediate Media)
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Katusha Sports' "Beyond" line is the most aggressive visually

Katusha Sports' "Beyond" line is the most aggressive visually (Image credit: Ben Delaney/Immediate Media)
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The "Essential" collection is the most subdued aesthetically, but features the same fit and fabrics as the other collections

The "Essential" collection is the most subdued aesthetically, but features the same fit and fabrics as the other collections (Image credit: Courtesy Katusha Sports)

This article originally appeared on BikeRadar

Countless brands come to pro teams and put their logos on clothing, but Katusha Sports could be the first clothing brand to come directly from a team. Russian benefactor Igor Makarov, who launched the Russian global cycling project that culminated in Team Katusha, is backing the new Katusha Sports clothing brand, which launched April 1.

Katusha Sports has three lines of men's road clothing: the understated Essential, the Team Katusha-inspired Breakaway, and the loud-and-proud Beyond. Each are identical in fit, fabric and price; only the aesthetics are different.

Longtime apparel executive Jean Philippe-Torgue, most recently a vice president at Mavic sister company Salomon, is Katusha Sports CEO. He brought with him two former Salomon employees, including apparel product director Mathieu Danel.

"Katusha Sports is right in between the technical and the designer brands," Philippe-Torgue said, adding that while cycling has a lot of great history, "we want to be contemporary and modern, not to position ourselves in history like some other brands."

Beyond the modern long sleeve and race fit, the Katusha Sports gear is notable for its use of the hyper-wicking 37.5 yarn and Schoeller fabrics. Other brands use 37.5 (most notably Mavic in its new road gear), but Danel said Katusha Sports is unique in its integrated approach.

"If moisture moves out of a 37.5 baselayer, but then stops with jacket, it doesn't work," Danel said. "Pearl Izumi, Adidas, Nike, others have similar things in some pieces of clothing, but theirs is not a full collection done with the same technology."

Team Katusha has been riding in Katusha Sports apparel this season. Much of the clothing is made by OneWay, the same supplier who outfitted the team last year as Katusha Sports ramps up its operations.

"We have done all of the design," Danel said. "Since we just began the project in September, we didn't have time to change all our product, so some of our product is similar to last season."

All the clothing is made in Europe, in Italy, Portugal and Romania, Danel said. Similarly, the brand's main focus for now is Europe, with online sales available now with all pricing in Euros, ranging from a €75 baselayer to a €140 superlight jersey to €210 bib shorts.