Few rider and sponsor relationships last as long as the ones between Ryan Villopoto and the brands that he runs. Since turning pro in 2005, he has been clad in Thor gear and Alpinestars boots, and Oakley followed soon after. One thing that we have noticed over the years is that RV tends to run (and win) in purple gear. Want proof? His first 450 in Seattle in 2009, Vegas 2009, ect. That is not to say that he does not perform well in other color combinations, like the solid yellow kit he ran at this year’s Monster Energy Cup, but is just something we thought we would share. You tend to notice these things after going to the races for so many years.
Helmet: Thor Force
Color: Solid (Custom painted by AP Designs)
Like every other professional racer on the Thor line-up, Villopoto uses the Force helmet. He opts for an extra-small sized helmet, as it gives a snug fit on his head. Thor sends solid helmets to AP Designs, where they are custom painted to Monster Energy’s specifications.
Goggles: Oakley Crowbar
Color: Ryan Villopoto Signature
An Oakley athlete for years, Villopoto has his own signature goggle on the Crowbar frame, though he often runs the numerous other colorways offered. If the soil is rocky, like it was at this year’s Monster Energy Cup, he will use the plastic nose guard that snaps into frame. The standard clear lens is loaded with as many laminated tearoffs needed for the race length and conditions.
Neck Brace: Alpinestars Carbon Bionic Neck Support
A longtime advocate of neck braces, Villopoto has used the Bionic Neck Support since its launch in 2008. Earlier versions of the brace were custom fitted and featured more carbon fiber than standard units, but according to Alpinestars, he has recently begun to wear them off the shelf. White front pieces and graphics are put on to better match the gear and bike.
Villopoto’s jerseys undergoing minimal modification; iron-on sponsor logos and his name printed onto the back. RV races only in the Core line, which is Thor’s high-end set, but recently began riding in the Phase line for its lightweight feel.
Glove: Thor Spectrum
Color: White and Yellow
While the recent trend in gloves has been to ditch all topside protection in favor of lightweight, Villopoto still prefers to have something covering his fingers and knuckles from roost. The perforated palm and fingers also keep his hands cooler.
Like the jersey, the fit and feel of the Core pant make them a mainstay in RV’s gear bag. Minimal adjustments are made, but the underside of the thigh feature Monster Energy TPR patches.
Boots: Alpinestars Tech 10
Another product that RV has used throughout his professional career is the Tech 10 boot. Like the Bionic neck brace, they are standard boots and are sometimes fitted with a graphics kit.