The 1.61 Rocka Jacket is our variant of one of my favourite racing garments, the Castelli Gabba. It shares the same protective and performance properties, but is cut in a manner that makes it more fitted to everyday use. The Rocka is made of Gore Windstopper and has had a water repellent treatment, meaning it will protect you from the wind and rain. The material’s properties also make it highly breathable, preventing overheating while going hard.
The most striking difference between the Gabba and the Rocka is the collar, it is secured with one button: when not required it can be wrapped around the rear of the neck and fastened to the same button. This reveals the rosso fuoco colour on the inside of the Rocka, a bright contrast to the army-like functional green of the exterior. This two-tone material was especially made for this design and is nearly 20% lighter than the material used for the Gabba – a significant weight reduction which also increases performance and reduces volume when removed to be carried in a pocket.
The name originates from the motorcycling culture of the mid-20th century, the Rockers. I always felt more aligned to that than the scooter culture, the Mods (when it comes to going on my bike, I like to feel like a Rocker, not a Mod). Where the Mods would wear sharp suits the Rockers would wear leather biking jackets, most of which had wrap around buttoned collars.
Don’t get me wrong, I love a sharp suit, in fact it was my tailor in London, Timothy Everest, who helped shape the collar and inspire the contrasting two-tone material, much like the suits he makes for his bespoke clients. The cut is slightly longer at the back, and a little more generous than a Jersey in order to work at its best in the worst of conditions. The pleating of the shoulders was created to give more movement and create a sharper edge contrary to the pure aerodynamic properties required of the Gabba, in fact the whole cut has been designed to give a little more room, comfort and more defined silhouette than the race version.