It has to be said: the thing I loved most about wearing this top was that I managed to bag three Strava QOMs in the hour I spent testing it. Read on for a description of its trail-slaying specialness*:
1. It’s designed for performance:
Despite my initial endorphin-fuelled assumption that the Zeta Freeride is made of magic, it turns out that its actually made of quick dry polyester.
This means that while it doesn’t actually make you go faster (really?), it is highly breathable and wicks moisture away from the skin to keep you comfortable.
I wore it on a warm evening in August and it worked really well both going up hill (when it’s easy to overheat) and down (when the wind tends to cool you off).
It is also remarkably silky-light to wear and feels lovely.
Mesh panels at the underarms and back yoke aid ventilation and the fabric has an added anti-bacterial treatment to prevent odour issues (although I think I ‘freshness situations’ tend to be a bigger problem for male riders!).
2. It’s designed for mountain biking:
The Zeta Freeride is a longer length than a road jersey, and has a small drop tail at the rear, which allows you to move around on the bike without it rising or bunching up around your midriff.
I loved the relaxed fit ¾ length sleeves that protect your arms from bramble attacks (without snagging!) but let you flex your elbows. The air-flow round your wrists helps prevent over heating – no matter how hard I rode I never felt the need to push the sleeves up!
There’s a handy little zip pocket to the side, which is great for a gel or tissues (it was more comfortable to keep anything heavier – such as a phone – in the central position offered by a backpack).
There’s an optics wipe on the inside of the top to rid your eyewear of mud splatters. This is a nice touch but I do feel that the spectacles graphic on the front of the jersey looks a bit out of place.
3. It’s designed for women:
Despite being a mountain bike top for women, the Zeta Freeride is in no way an old-school baggy, shapeless sack that makes you look like a 12-year old boy. Hurrah! In fact, it has a relaxed cut that skims the figure but it is also flattering and feminine. The feather light silky fabric looks soft and fluid as you ride (I just wish I did too!), which is a nice, sporty touch.
Despite not actually been made of magic, this is a great value top that feels fantastic to wear.
Designed to keep you comfortable on warmer days.
The spectacles logo.
* Perhaps I should mention here that the trail conditions were also perfect :0)
Price: £34.99, available from Wiggle.
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