Gore

Cycle ClothingReviewsWomen's Cycling

Gorefully good: Victoria falls for the Gore One Power Lady Gore-Tex Shakedry cycling jacket

IMG_2461
views
2802

It must be amazing to live in a place with a good climate, where you can confidently cycle in shorts year round, and where you aren’t compelled to spend half of the year in waterproofs and thermals.

Sadly, for those of us cycling in these Great British Isles (and a great many other countries too, of course) the need for good waterproofs and warm layers is simply a fact of life.

Whatever happens, birds will sing, tides will turn, the sun will continue to rise, and it will continue to rain on far too many rides.

I’m not going to lie: I really am quite a fair weather cyclist. That’s not to say that I never ride in poor weather – but I take little pleasure in it, and if I can reschedule? Well, I probably will. Regardless of the weatherproof gear available, relentless rain still makes for a difficult ride, with slippery roads, debris washed down from hills making descents treacherous, and raindrops sneaking their way into any available orifice.

GORE ONE POWER LADY GORETEX SHAKEDRY CYCLING JACKET
Ready for anything! The Gore One Power Lady Gore-Tex Shakedry bike jacket and Velotoze shoe covers kept me sane in a day of cycling in torrential rain…

I think we can all agree, though, that if we pledged to only ride in good weather, we would only ride twice a year. So we just have to get into the right mindset – and the right kit – to make it as enjoyable and safe as possible.

It was cold, it was windy, and it was rainy. Biblically rainy. End-of-days rainy.

Gore Bike Wear have launched what I can only describe as a piece of alchemy in their One Power Lady Gore-Tex Shakedry Bike Jacket. Honestly, it’s like – like MAGIC. Ludicrously lightweight, ludicrously soft and silky to the touch, ludicrously breathable – and ludicrously waterproof. Oh, and they look really, really cool, too.

GORE ONE POWER LADY GORETEX SHAKEDRY CYCLING JACKET

The price tag might put a lot of cyclists off. Indeed, it would have put me off before I rode out in it in practically apocalyptic conditions. But now that I’ve experienced the effect of the Shakedry, there’s just no going back.

Gore Shakedry: The Testing Conditions

On a weekend of cycling in September we were, of course, hoping for a glorious weekend – one of those perfect, golden-hued, Indian summer days. We were spectacularly disappointed. It was cold, it was windy, and it was rainy. Biblically rainy. End-of-days rainy. So rainy that 10 miles in, when I clenched my fist water ran out of my gloves in rivulets. So rainy that the chamois pad in my bib shorts was sodden. Just SO RAINY. I promise you, the only way I could have got the Shakedry wetter would have been by going swimming in it.

you can imagine my feeling of happiness, to be dry and comfortable from the hips up and the neck down

So, you can imagine my feeling of happiness and, frankly, smugness, to at least be dry and comfortable from the hips up and the neck down while the rest of the group found themselves sodden from head to toe. (Oh, incidentally, another source of smugness came from my Velotoze. An absolute bitch to get on and off, and I only managed to wear them twice before they ripped, so they worked out very expensive – but boy. On a day like that, they were worth the expense…)

GORE ONE POWER LADY GORETEX SHAKEDRY CYCLING JACKET
I kid you not: the only way this jacket could have been wetter would have been if I had gone swimming in it…

The Gore Shakedry cycling jacket is a something of an anomaly in the world of Gore products. Don’t get me wrong – I am full of admiration for the brand’s technology and practicality. It’s cycling gear for serious cyclists and it’s effective. But… I can’t pretend that I find it good looking. It’s definitely utilitarian, and the women’s jerseys in particular are decidedly lacking in style and tailoring. But the Shakedry jacket is both brilliantly effective AND good looking. I have actually been wearing it off-bike with my regular clothes. It’s super cool, and styled like a biker jacket. Think… Barbour International. It’s really slick, really well fitted, and nothing about it screams cyclist. But it also performs fantastically well on-bike, and folds to roughly the size of a postage stamp if the weather improves. (You never know.)

GORE ONE POWER LADY GORETEX SHAKEDRY CYCLING JACKET
Matt wore the men’s version of the Gore Shakedry. As you can see, the conditions were… damp, to say the least.

it performs fantastically well on-bike, and folds to roughly the size of a postage stamp when the weather improves

The new Gore Shakedry range features an outer surface that permanently repels water. They are the lightest and most breathable Gore-Tex products available and feature a technology which eliminates the face fabric, preventing absorption of water. That means that you won’t experience the chilling effect that can result from wet face fabric, and it also means that the jacket weight doesn’t grow heavy with rain. A few quick shakes of the jacket simply render the surface dry, as if by magic.

GORE ONE POWER LADY GORETEX SHAKEDRY CYCLING JACKET
Looking slightly dishevelled, halfway through the ride. The rain had eased off for a while when we stopped her to admire the view and take on some fuel… Torso marvellously dry. Could not say the same for my bum!

Gore One Power Lady Gore-tex Shakedry Bike Jacket

This revolutionary women’s cycling jacket is made of ultralight, breathable Gore-Tex Active laminate. The innovative Shakedry product technology has been paired with a flattering, fitted cut to offer cyclists supremely reliable and stylish protection from the rain, no matter how heavy the downpour. It features reflective transfers for higher visibility and safety, and in size medium, it weights in at a mere 95 grams. It is machine washable at 40°C with liquid detergent.

Sizing:
When I read the size guide I was pretty taken aback: for my measurements, it indicated that the size XL was the one to go for. I was actually worried that even the XL might not be big enough – and I usually wear size 12/M! They do come very up small. It’s daft, really – no woman wants to buy one size larger than usual, never mind two sizes larger.

Upside:
Wildly effective – I don’t believe you’ll find a more water resistant cycling jacket and certainly not one as lightweight and breathable as this. It’s also wildly good looking and you can enjoy wearing it off-bike with jeans, which possibly makes the cost (£280) a bit easier to swallow…?

Downside:
It is expensive – £280 is a lot of money to spend. Unless you’re prepared to cycle in pretty unpleasant weather, you might struggle to justify the purchase. (Though, by making the purchase, you will be prepared – in terms of kit, at any rate…)

Overall verdict:

If you cycle in all conditions to justify the expense, I wholeheartedly recommend it. It is, without doubt, the best waterproof I have ever worn. I can’t believe how breathable and pleasant it is to, while keeping all the rain out. It’s just brilliant, and it looks so cool, too.

The Gore One Power Lady Gore-tex Shakedry Bike Jacket  is available from Wiggle.com and is priced at £280.

Cycle ClothingNews

What does an Olympic champion cyclist wear? Fabian Cancellara shares his favourite GORE Bike Wear kit

GORE BIKE WEAR_Fabian Cancellara_3
views
2933

“For time trials, everything has to be right: the wind, the weather, the timing, your state of mind on the day and the right material for the different requirements on the route. When a lot is right, a lot has already been won.”

GORE Bikewear Fabian Cancellara

Over his 16 year career, the Swiss former professional cyclist, multiple world champion and two-time Olympic champion Fabian Cancellara has been regarded as the undisputed specialist in individual time trials and difficult one-day races, in particular the prestigious Spring Classics.

“I am an absolute perfectionist. As well as optimum preparation, the material also always plays a large part in difficult races. Even in my professional career, I was always the first person wanting to test new prototypes in order to develop products further and to get the most out of them.”

As a global brand ambassador for GORE Bike Wear, Fabian will bring his experience to the product development of highly functional bike wear. As with time trials, the details in product development are the key to functionality, innovation and perfect features.

GORE Bikewear Fabian Cancellara

Fabian has shared his favourite items from the current GORE Bike Wear collection, starting with The ONE Gore-Tex Active Bike jacket (pictured below). Weighing just 107 grams (in size L), the wind and waterproof road cycling jacket is extremely lightweight and more breathable than ever. The revolutionary Shakedry product technology repels water and keeps you comfortably dry under maximum strain and in every weather. We’ll be bringing you an in depth review of the Shakedry bike jackets soon.

GORE Bike Wear Fabian Cancellara

Fabian has been enthusiastic about the jacket: “The fit is perfect. The ergonomically designed stand-up collar adapts to every cycling position and is so light that you can hardly feel it. It fits in every jersey pocket.”

Fabian has a clear idea of what he needs when he’s choosing an outfit. In temperatures of 20°C and above, he cycles in the Oxygen 2.0 Bibtights short which is made with performance-oriented cyclists in mind. It has a supporting structure, flat hems which will not dig in, and a seat insert to ensure comfort and wind protection on long rides. He also wears a short sleeve jersey with high breathability. His current favourite garment is the Power Windstopper SO jersey.

GORE Bike Wear Fabian Cancellara

“The details are well thought out. The 3-compartment back pocket is slightly tapered on the side for easy access. It works perfectly. You also have no friction thanks to the minimised seams.”

GORE Bike Wear products drawing on Fabian’s expertise and experience in multiple cycling disciplines will be coming soon, so watch this space… You can see more of his favourite products here.

We’ll also be reviewing the GORE Bike Wear Shakedry jackets very soon, so keep your eyes on Vamper.cc and our Instagram feed for all the details.

You can read Matt’s review of the GORE Power Windstopper Soft Shell Short Sleeve Jersey here.

Gore Bike Wear Shakedry jacket
Victoria will be reviewing the GORE Bike Wear Women’s Shakedry bike jacket
Cycle ClothingReviewsWomen's Cycling

Löffler women’s cycling jersey review: Gore 1beats2 Windstopper technology provides effective wind protection

DSC_0661
views
2218

I’ve been trying out the Löffler Windstopper FZ women’s cycling jersey. The jersey features a Gore 1beats2 Windstopper membrane, making it windproof, water-repellent and breathable. It’s been such a mixed summer in the UK – particularly in the north – that a windproof jersey has been surprisingly welcome, despite it being August.

The Gore 1beats2 Windstopper laminate is designed to work best at temperatures between 10 and 20 degrees, so for less-than-perfect British summer days and early autumn, it’s ideal. It was developed to help protect cyclists against the cold and the wind, without having to add extra layers. Windstopper jerseys are designed to keep riders comfortable from dawn to dusk on the bike without the need for adding jackets and gilets. They’re said to provide the same thermal insulation as the combination of a regular jersey plus breathable windbreaker jacket while weighing up to 35% less than the two together.

Gore 1beats2 Windstopper

Löffler is not a well known brand in the UK cycling market but this Austrian cycle wear company makes serious, sensible bike kit. It might not set your heart racing, but it performs solidly.

I can’t say that I have been all that interested in short-sleeved windproof jerseys before. I was of the opinion that if it was cold enough to need a windproof garment, it would probably need long sleeves. Testing this has actually made me realise that there is a place for short-sleeved windproof jerseys, after all. We’ve had a lot of windy weather this summer and – to get all up close and personal – does anyone else find that cycling on windy days causes really sore nipples? It doesn’t have to be a cold day for me to be in some serious discomfort if the wind is up. So, for that reason alone, I take back what I said. Short-sleeved windproof jerseys might have a place in my cycling wardrobe after all.

Gore 1beats2 Windstopper

I’d be lying if I said the Löffler Windstopper jersey excited me; it’s a very functional-looking piece of kit. But, I was pleasantly surprised when I saw the photographs: I actually think it’s quite flattering, and it was very comfortable. I like the stand-up collar – again, good for keeping draughts out – and the fabric feels nice. As autumn approaches, it will be useful paired with arm warmers (more on those later).

However, it’s a bit lacking in design features. It only has one pocket, a rear pocket which zips. It’s generous enough to fit my enormous Sony Xperia Z5, but there isn’t enough storage for inner tubes, bananas and the like. I would also expect a bit more reflective detailing on a very functional garment.

Gore 1beats2 Windstopper
The jersey would benefit from more pockets and reflective detailing

It’s a fast drying jersey which is remarkably breathable considering how robust the fabric feels. Wind is blocked really effectively, and sweat is wicked away nicely. The jersey is stretchier than I expected, though a little bit short in the body and prone to riding up. Another inch in length and a stickier silicone grip strip on the hem would be useful.

If you’re looking for a good quality, windproof jersey for commuting, the Löffler Windstopper jersey is a decent buy with excellent windproofing thanks to the Gore 1beats2 Windstopper technology. However, future iterations would benefit from additional pockets and reflective details.

Gore 1beats2 Windstopper

A word of warning – sizing is quite small. I usually wear size medium jerseys but this one is pretty snug, and I would be more comfortable in a size large. (I’m 172cm and weigh 69kg).

I have also been testing the Löffler Windstopper Softshell Light Arm Warmers, when I can wrestle them off Matt who is particularly taken with them. In the summer it’s unusual for me to reach for arm warmers as I’m quite a hot blooded sort – but Matt’s clearly spent too long in the south of England and feels the need for warmth on early morning rides, no matter what time of year!

Gore 1beats2 Windstopper
The reflective detail is effective, but it should feature on both arms for better visibility

The Löffler Windstopper Softshell arm warmers are really nice to wear. They are lined with Thermo-Velour for warmth and it is really soft and cosy – lovely against the skin. They stay put, and they are very lightweight and flexible – no bunching inside the elbows.

The reflective logo on the left arm is really bright, but it’s a shame it isn’t on both arms. We’re not huge fans of hi-vis cycling kit, but as bike commuters we are very big fans of reflective detailing.