Summer is somewhere on the horizon and with the thought of sunshine comes the need for new kit. Italian manufacturer Sportful dresses Tinkoff-Saxo pro cycling team (think Contador) and one of Italy’s top women’s road cycling squads. It follows then, that Sportful kit is pretty ‘pro’ - close and as figure-hugging as a Topshop body con dress.
The new women’s Allure Jersey is a short-sleeved jersey that’s suited to hot days on the road. With integrated UV protection, compression capabilities and moisture-wicking features this is a jersey that claims to (almost) do it all.
Created from E-lite multi-denier polyester jersey fabric, this is a technical jersey that in testing did exactly what it said it was going to do – on a rare 25 degree C day in April it kept me cool and dry on the bike. Worn without a base layer on a typical early spring morning though and I was cold (read freezing). Be aware then, this really is a high summer bit of kit.
The invisible, three-quarter length zipper creates a sleek silhouette and this, combined with the bold white and pink colourway, means that you’ll certainly get noticed. Three rear pockets are finished with an elasticated hem, which banishes that saggy back problem. A reflective motif on the centre pocket is a good safety feature for the post-race, ride home at dusk.
The contoured, elasticated waistband is raised slightly at the front and features a Sportful motif gripper – a nice detail and one that alludes to the quality of Sportful’s kit.
Women’s jerseys are often cut too short, based on a short-sighted assumption that we woman are all clones and have short bodies and long legs. This can be frustrating, unless you like the crop top effect. I found the Allure Jersey however, to be the perfect length giving just the right amount of coverage at the front and the back, although if you don’t like skin-tight cycling clothing you’ll probably want to size up.
In short, this is quality jersey that I know I’ll grow to love. The down side? It will have to stay in the wardrobe for those rare hot English days.
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