Run in style this winter with Iffley Road
Written by Peter Brooker in Brands on the 15th October 2015
Nobody believed it could be done, until someone stepped up and lead the way for others to follow. I'm not talking about the time I sank 12 shots of Brandy in as many minutes and broke the college record. I'm talking about the sub-four minute mile that Roger Bannister ran on May 6th 1954 at the Iffley Road track in Oxford. Iffley Road now has another claim to fame as it's the name Bill Byrne and his wife have coined their active-wear clothing brand.
Since its inception on the anniversary of Roger's 4 minute mile, May 6th 2013, Iffley Road have focused their designs on running gear that not only exceed the performance levels of its contemporaries, but it's subtle designs and light-logo give it that effortless designer look. Its activewear that can be rocked after your run is done down the pub. Drinking a deliciously hydrating yet farcically over-priced J20 of course. Based in West London, all of Iffley Road garments are designed locally and handcrafted in Portugal using carefully selected fabrics from European mills.
"We had a clear vision of wanting to produce clean, uncluttered running gear. We took our initial inspiration from the era of the first 4 minute mile. For example our signature tri-stripe is based on the colours of the Amateur Athletics Association (AAA) strip worn at the time of the 4 minute mile. Similarly our embossed roundel is a subtle nod towards the circular badges popular with many historic running clubs including the AAA". - Bill Byrne - Co-founder.
Some of the front runners (pun intended) from the Iffley Road winter range involve the Richmond Storm Jacket. It's made from a highly technical three layer Italian soft-shell, incorporating ActiveCollant™ technology, which is waterproof, windproof and breathable. It is also soft, lightweight and flexible so you won't feel like you're carrying bricks on your back as you make those hill-sprints. "We believe that what makes a really desirable piece of kit is the quality and performance of the fabric, the precision of the fit, the choice of the colour and simply getting the details right".
Layer up the Storm jacket with this long-sleeved Thorpe Merino Top. The high performance garment is comprised from the same 100% merino wool that is woven in their trademark piqué. Its itch free so you won't be running like you've got ants in your chest hair and the cut is deliberately generous allowing it to be worn over a base layer. You'll certainly look the part as you run past your neighbours chiselling frost off their windscreens in the morning. There are great savings to be had if you invest in a Winter Bundle Kit too. The beanie provides perfect insulation, and the leggings are sleek, stretchy, and breathable with a lightweight feel ensuring you don't over heat. The fabric's flexibility makes these Windsor leggings perfect for indoor circuit training as well as when you're chewing up the Iffley Road track in pursuit of beating Roger's time.
In the pipeline, Iffley Road are already putting ideas together for a capsule collection inspired by trail running for a spring 2016 launch. It will comprise a combination of new and existing styles and will feature artwork from a very talented artist the founders met through running. In conclusion, and to quote my driving instructor, “Don't you dare spark that up in here.” Only joking. Keep your eye on the road, Iffley Road to be exact.