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No more rainbow: Peter Sagan shows off new Bora-Hansgrohe jersey

Pre-Brexit Britain and Bieber at the top of the charts: remembering a time before Sagan in rainbow

Joe Robinson
3 Oct 2018

It's almost impossible to remember what Peter Sagan looks like not draped in rainbow. That's because for the past three years cycling's biggest star has been our sport's World Champion.

Granted there has been a few days in which the Bora-Hansgrohe man has swapped that jersey for green or even yellow, but since Sunday 27th September 2015 Sagan has been the man in the multi-coloured jersey. 

Until now, and with those pesky course designers at the UCI, the Ardennes-esque Innsbruck World Championships posed just too tough a test for the 28-year-old who found himself out the back, dropped like a stone last week proving that he really is mortal.

Eventually, a man 10 years his senior and another veteran of the Worlds podium, Alejandro Valverde, took a maiden World title proving that being six-times the bridesmaid doesn't stop you being the bride and that cycling fans on social media are still as divided as ever when it comes to the sport's dodgy past. 

Back to Sagan. A lot has changed since he first became World Champion. Before Richmond 2015, he'd never won any of cycling's Monuments, for example. He now has two, the Tour of Flanders and Paris-Roubaix.

Geraint Thomas was still kind of a Classics man, having won E3-Harelbeke that spring and got on the podium at Gent-Wevelgem.

Yeah, he came second at Tour de Suisse and fifth at Paris-Nice that year but you'd never back him at a Grand Tour.

Now he is a bonified three-week hitter with a Tour de France yellow jersey to his name and a ferocious battle against Lewis Hamilton and England's World Cup semi-finalists for Sport's Personality of the Year on his hands.

Chris Froome was a 'one-race pony' who could never do it outside of France, Oleg Tinkoff was still saying pretty offensive things while pumping millions into cycling and Dave Brailsford was still palatable to the European cycling public. 

Britain was still firmly a part of the EU, happily enjoying the single market and freedom of movement for our cheap holidays to Spain, listening to Justin Bieber who topped the charts.

Loveable Roy Hodgson was leading our nation's footballers down a blind alley with no lights and England Rugby was about to be embarrassed at its home World Cup, failing to even progress from the group stages.

Truth is, it's been 1098 days (if my GCSE B-grade maths is correct) since Sagan was last seen rainbowless and it's really going to take some time getting used to. So here is a picture of him in the kit he will be wearing as of now. 

He will not be in a Bora-Hansgrohe trade jersey, mind. Of course he won't, he made sure of that back in June taking a sixth Slovakian national title, almost in the knowledge that he wouldn't be able to defend rainbow later that year. 

That means the last time that Peter Sagan wore a trade team jersey outside of individual and team time trials was Stage 2 of the 2011 Tour de Suisse.

A sponsor's nightmare. All that money and your star rider isn't even in your jersey. I guess that means that Sagan will just have to continue paying his dues via more extractor fan television adverts and awkward shower scenes, but I'm alright with that.