Review - Sportful Fiandre WS LRR Short Sleeve Jacket
Autumn also provides one of the most challenging times for kit selection though; from storms to searing sunshine, the season can provide it all. The new AW16 range from Sportful, is designed to be superbly versatile; capable of keeping even the most enthusiastic all-weather rider in comfort.
The new Sportful Fiandre WS LRR Short Sleeve Jacket is a highlight from the range. The piece utilises Gore's Windstopper Light Rain Resistant fabric, coupled with a waterproof zip, to provide an 'element-beating' shield layer - capable of warding off the worst September storm. Even with this protection though, the top's short sleeve (it comes down to just above the elbow) design, and the full length zip (as well as the highly breathable fabric), mean that the layer remains incredibly comfortable in varying temperatures. This really is a race-ready piece of kit, capable of dealing with wide ranging body and ambient temperatures.
I've never tested a cycling top quite like the Sportful Fiandre WS LRR Jacket before. I've worn jerseys and gilets made from Nanoflex, NoRain and Rain Defence; but nothing that has taped seams, and as much water and wind resistance as this 'jacket' does. The advanced protection level also has a lot to do with the cut and fit of the jacket: with its super high-cut collar, low-cut hem and long arms - it really helps to seal out the weather. This is a windproof, but a 'next generation' one.
Even with the Sportful team pushing the boundaries in terms of fabric, fit and cut; they have still considered the finer details with the Fiandre WS LRR Jacket. The jacket still has three deep rear pockets (with drainage holes!); so you can wear it either with just a base layer underneath, or as a protective third layer. The rear of the jacket also features thoughtful reflective trim, which is ideal for autumnal low light conditions. Finally, the Flame Orange colourway - that it is just super cool.
This is a next-level garment. It provides the breathability of a jersey, with the pack-ability and protection of a jacket. It provides the fit of a race-bred piece of apparel, but with the ability to use it as a third layer too, to make it even more versatile. It is the ideal option for those changeable days: combine it with a warm SS jersey and NoRain arm warmers for real wet/cold weather protection; or wear it with just a base layer on those mild but damp days.
The Sportful Fiandre WS LRR is a new staple for my autumn riding wardrobe.
View the Sportful Fiandre WS LRR Short Sleeve Jacket at Wiggle (Link)
|The Sportful Fiandre WS LRR Short Sleeve Jacket is a stand-out piece of race-ready cycling kit|
|The Gore Windstopper Light Rain Resistant fabric is taped, to provide a waterproof layer|
|Three deep rear pockets on the Sportful Fiandre WS LRR Short Sleeve Jacket provide plenty of storage|
|The deep drop hem on the Sportful Fiandre WS LRR Short Sleeve Jacket provides superb spray protection|
|The Sportful Fiandre WS LRR Short Sleeve Jacket would certainly be at home in Flanders|
|The Gore WindStopper Light Rain Resistance fabric is unbeatable at breathability and protection|
|Elastic grippers on the elbow length sleeves of the Sportful Fiandre WS LRR Short Sleeve Jacket help to seal out the elements|
|Add Sportful NoRain arm warmers, to provide the ultimate long-sleeve autumn cycling top|
|Overall, the Sportful Fiandre WS LRR Short Sleeve Jacket is an extremely versatile and very well made jacket|