When I’d got over the bright colours on this jersey, the next thing I noticed was the softness of the fabric. It’s incredibly light and flexible, which means when on it sits against your body like a second skin. Specialized have used their ‘VaporRize knit’ fabric which blends moisture management and durability, and for the ‘Pro’ standard garment they’ve added ‘Cold Fabric’ technology where darker colours are treated to ensure the wearer doesn’t overheat.
The material on the back is lighter to allow for breathability – you can just make out the outline of the bibs. It all works: testing the jersey in the warmer, sometimes humid, temperatures we’ve been treated to lately I certainly felt cool enough and sweat was moved away from my body via wicking fabric as you’d expect.
Attention has been paid to the finer details, too – the gripper at the waist is elasticated at the rear, and then wide but reinforced at the front. This means you get a fit that won’t ride up in the cycling position, but there’s no restriction at the front. There’s some gentle ruching on the lower part of the body, too which creates a flattering shape.
The collar sits high, with the full zip hiding neatly in its cage when stowed away, and the sleeves are ‘cuffless’ to allow for an aero fit without any overly tight grasp on the skin.
So far so good. I only had one real issue with this jersey, and that was that the light and flexible material meant that when loaded with the basics: pump (because I’ve had too many co2 failings for my liking), multitool, phone (for which there is a zipped, sweatproof pocket), keys and gel, the pockets sagged and therefore jumped around a bit as I rode.
Initially I started with a Medium, sizing down to a Small. There is also an Extra Small available, and from experience bouncing pockets can nearly always be resolved by going down a size. Since the kit is designed to “feel painted on” I would expect that I’d find a better fit with the XSmall as I still had quite a bit of extra fabric. This said, even in the Small the fabric felt supportive and flattering, if not as aero as it should be. Sizes go from XSmall to XLarge – but it is worth noting that if I need the XSmall, then my lighter riding buddies are unlikely to find something to fit here.
I also noticed that after a few rides and three washes, there was one pull on the rear of the jersey. Since the fabric is so light and delicate, I’m none too surprised, but this gear might be best kept for Sunday best as it won’t last forever with rough treatment.