AU­TUMN KIT TESTED

We ride a va­ri­ety of kit op­tions to keep you ped­alling through au­tumn’s fickle weather

Cycling Plus - - CONTENTS -

From bib shorts and knee warmer com­bi­na­tions, three-quar­ter bibs, gilets to jer­seys, we’ve got your es­sen­tial au­tumn wardrobe sorted.

As the days draw in and we head into au­tumn the Bri­tish weather is un­pre­dictable at best. This can make cloth­ing choice dif­fi­cult. For­tu­nately, there has never been such a wide range of kit suit­able for th­ese vari­able con­di­tions to keep you rid­ing what­ever the weather hurls your way.

The se­cret to dress­ing at this time of year is to have kit that’s ver­sa­tile. Lay­er­ing is a good op­tion be­cause it of­fers flex­i­bil­ity. That said, some mod­ern jer­seys with jack­et­style fea­tures have helped to re­duce the num­ber of lay­ers re­quired.

An­other good ex­am­ple of flex­i­bil­ity is shorts and knee warm­ers. Many brands of­fer shorts de­signed for cooler rid­ing, which use a ther­mal Roubaix fab­ric for added in­su­la­tion. When com­bined with knee warm­ers they of­fer flex­i­bil­ity across a va­ri­ety of weather con­di­tions. Three­quar­ter bib knick­ers are an­other. While they’re less flex­i­ble they are ex­tremely warm and com­fort­able. You’ll be shocked how much use they get once you own a pair.

There’s also a wide range of op­tions for the up­per body. For warmer days, a jer­sey and arm warm­ers might be all you need As tem­per­a­tures drop a long sleeve jer­sey will be a bet­ter op­tion. Th­ese range from thin­ner, more tra­di­tional jer­seys through to jacket-like tops, which might fea­ture wind­proof pan­els and wa­ter­proof coat­ings for cooler, damper con­di­tions.

For ad­di­tional warmth and wind pro­tec­tion a gilet is a wel­come wardrobe ad­di­tion. Th­ese range from light­weight pack­able wind­proofs through to more sub­stan­tial wa­ter­proof ver­sions. Bright colours and re­flec­tive fin­ishes are use­ful for com­mut­ing and train­ing du­ties.

Af­ter a sum­mer of turn­ing your body into a finely-tuned ma­chine there’s no ex­cuse not to carry that fit­ness through into au­tumn. We test 16 dif­fer­ent op­tions to keep you on the road.

1 BIBS Whether it’s shorts, three-quar­ter knick­ers or tights we rec­om­mend go­ing for bibs, which are the up­per sec­tion and shoul­der straps. Th­ese hold ev­ery­thing up and keep the in­ter­nal chamois pad in place. They also pro­vide warmth around the midriff. 2 BREATHA­BIL­ITY 2 1

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