Practical, understated, and highly technical, Gore Bike Wear isn't a brand that shouts about itself, but if you have the ambition to head off into the outdoors, Gore fabrics are a truly great shout.
With their latest collection ramping up the versatility of their gear whilst reaching a technical level unequalled in any of their past ranges, the Gore Bike Wear SS17 Collection is a tempting prospect for the no-nonsense, no-excuses, get out and ride sort of cyclist, looking for the next piece of kit to help you hit your target, be it miles on the road, time on the clock, or simply enjoying the thrill of riding a bike.
Split into three collections, the latest Gore range is tiered according to recommended riding conditions. Their headline product the Gore Bike Wear SHAKEDRY Jacket sitting atop and, aside from their broader collection, Gore's experts have proceeded to create a supporting range that lives up to the technical brilliance of its key piece, and so, we thought we'd offer you a quick spin through the range, with some choice product reviews of items that you're going to want out on the road.
Gore Bike Wear OXYGEN Collection
The OXYGEN collection is for riders who look at their times and look right into the minute details in order to whittle down the seconds. A scrutinising eye examining the OXYGEN kit though will find only a well thought out range that offers a sublime, responsive fit alongside comfortable, performance fabrics that serve to wick moisture quickly and efficiently as you ride.
Having benefitted from a hands-on preview of the range's OXYGEN Classics Windstopper Short Sleeve Jersey, we were taken aback by the staggering attention to detail, and a rather superior fit and feel of this item, and that's before the staggering technical performance.
Touting Gore's established Windstopper fabrics, we were sure that this jersey would be a bluster buster of merit, but, we weren't expecting water repellency in the degree that shone through. Used through long cold, murky, misty, and plain old rainy rides on the bike, this piece became a first choice when completing fast paced training, beading the worst of the weather whilst ensuring that we never overheated, nor felt the full force of the chill in some rather harsh weather.
For sunnier days though, the Oxygen collection maintains it's lightweight, race fit and high breathability credentials with items like the OXYGEN Light Short Sleeve Jersey providing the faster rider with most everything they could need functionally on their all day, high-speed ride.
Gore Bike Wear POWER Collection
Following the lead of the Oxygen range, and offering that same technical fabric use is the POWER selection. With a high level of protection, these garments provide that all year-round road cyclist a quality, functional, layer that is versatile and responsive, offering you all that you need for medium to long rides, where comfort rather than race pace are of central importance. Cut therefore a little looser and slightly more generous on sizing, these items are for social riders, heading out on the road in numbers to enjoy good times on two wheels.
One of the central products from the range of POWER products would have to be the POWER Windstopper Softshell Zip Off Long Sleeve Jersey. Practical, accommodating, and designed for the rider looking to progress their way through an often challenging Northern European climate, this POWER piece is hardy and adaptable to the ever-changing climate. Furnished with zip-off long sleeves, this jersey can at once become a short sleeve jersey for fresh, but changeable spring rides, where a shower en route could otherwise see your momentum sucked away from you.
Having tested the short sleeve version out on the road for some hill climbing in quintessentially typical British weather, the POWER Windstopper Softshell Short Sleeve Jersey proved a fantastic outer layer, reducing the need for a jacket in short-lived, ill-tempered weather. Used with a base layer on the very coldest of days, this windproof and supremely water resistant layer showed the very same droplet beading properties as the OXYGEN version whilst, unlike other brand's efforts, offering a breathability that would happily see us ride into mid to late spring without complaint of overheating.
Neatly finished with a drop hem for full coverage, for group rides and slower, colder days on the bike, this jersey proved itself time and again against the elements, holding up well to machine washing after some particularly down and dirty riding.
Gore Bike Wear ELEMENTS Collection
For the casual rider, seeking the thrill of the outdoors and taking as much pleasure in their route as in the act of riding, the ELEMENTS collection offers relaxed, reliable riding. Slightly more forgiving in cut, and designed for a wide-ranging use, this is a collection that's comfortable not being the fastest, but certainly secure in the knowledge that it's perhaps the most dependable and reliable option out there.
Perfect for that pre-scheduled fitness ride or quick spin, we were able to put the ELEMENT 2.0 Short Sleeve Jersey through its paces, proving itself time again the right jersey for more relaxed riding situations. Solidly constructed and with an aesthetic look that didn't shout too loudly in non-cycling circles, this top was the perfect chameleon, adapting to your needs and really shining on unpretentious, honest pleasure riding - the sort of outing that has you firmly hooked and keenly eyeing up your next two-wheeled escapade.
Rounding Things Up
So, a number of miles down the road from our first introduction to the SS17 collection, we have to admit to having been taken by surprise. Not only have Gore delivered on the high benchmark they set technically with some of the best performing protective fabrics around, but they've kept a low key look and identity that allows you to ride a range that takes a comprehensive and practical approach to your needs out on the road.
Found some inspiration for your next road ride? Come and browse the Gore Bike Wear SS17 Collection now!