Team USA – Alexi Grewal – Olympic Gold Medalist – Musette Bag – c.1984


Alexi Grewal won the Men’s Road Race Gold Medal at the 1984 Olympic Games in Los Angeles. This Team USA musette bag is from that time period although we have no clue as to the specific races it was used. It is clear Grewal used it multiple times as the fabric is quite soft from continued washings. We obtained this bag from Jim Ochowicz in the late 1990s when the 7-Eleven and Motorola programs concluded. As 7-Eleven was the dominant US team in the 1980s many of its riders were also on the US National Team. This was in one of the boxes we acquired that included national team jerseys and 7-Eleven skinsuits.

The Musette: A Simple Cloth Bag and Icon of Cycling

We see riders wrapped in spare tubes with goggles firmly in place, carrying the unmistakable fabric food bag from bicycle racing’s earliest photographs. This simple but vital musette bag takes its name from the nose-bag often seen hanging around horses’ necks.

Getting food and water to riders has always been a tricky but crucial part of racing.  In the early days, to supplement what a rider could carry in a musette, bars and cafes were often raided by riders leaving bills for race organizers to settle later. Formal feed zones were introduced to racing in 1919, but riders still had to stop to take on provisions from large tables. By the 1950s, the random cafes and tables of food began to be replaced by team staff on the side of the road handing off the musettes to riders who did not need to stop and risk losing valuable time. As cycling technology advances, with innovations like radios and wireless shifting, the proven and straightforward musette bag remains a vital method to get food and drinks to riders in the peloton.

In the early days, musettes were not available for fans to purchase.  They were highly prized and collected, especially when a favorite brand or race was featured.

Size: 13 x 11 inches (33 x 28 cm)

This item is one of a kind; please look carefully at the photos to determine the condition.

Out of stock

SKU: XT-1070 Category: Tag:


This item is one of a kind; please look carefully at the photos to determine the condition.