Waxed Lyrical: The Belstaff Trialmaster

The Belstaff Trialmaster jacket is the ultimate piece of rugged outerwear – and arguably the coolest man in movie history wouldn’t disagree.

“Racing,” Steve McQueen once asserted, “is life. Anything before or after is just waiting.” And, it’s a given that one of the most tungsten-needle-sharp dressers in Hollywood history – a man who made everything from shawl-collared chunky cardigans to three-piece suits and silk ties look effortlessly suave – always looked the part when putting his Triumph TR6 through its paces, whether over the grassy hills of Bavaria as the Cooler King in 1963’s The Great Escape or as himself at the 1964 International 6 Day Trials in East Germany.

An iconic photo of the latter event depicts McQueen astride his two-wheeled steed wearing a waxed jacket, probably an A7 made by Barbour (the British brand were sponsors for the event in question). The late actor also favoured the ‘Trialmaster’ waxed jacket made by another British heritage institution, Belstaff and was often seen wearing one in his petrol-headed endeavours.



August 2020


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