REVIEWED: Rapha Pro Team Jersey ($230 USD)
REVIEW IN SIX WORDS:
Performance, Pink, and oh so Pro!
New for AW '13, Rapha has unveiled a long sleeve version of their pro team jersey. I swore by their short sleeve version this past summer; it was a great performer. The long sleeve pro team jersey retains everything the short sleeve jersey stands for (race fit and a breathable, high stretch fabric optimized for performance under duress) but just with long sleeves (duh!) and a thicker fabric. I should state that while the fabric is thicker than the short sleeve version, it is by no means thick. Rather, I'd describe it as a mid weight fabric (on the lighter side), and despite the increased thickness, it still stretches and moves with you exactly like the short team pro team jersey.
And then there are the color choices. I'm really digging ALL of the colorways. For the stealthy or conservatives, there is the never-looks-bad black colorway. For the slightly more adventurous, you cannot beat the energy in the blue colorway. it's such a great blue. For the bold, the adventurous, and the statement makers, there is the hi-viz pink colorway. The most difficult part of buying this jersey will be which color to get (first).
So what's this jersey best for? If you're going to be doing any sort of riding this winter that is higher on the intensity scale, this is the jersey for you. On a cool day, I got away with wearing it on it's own and on cold days, I threw a pro team jacket over the top and was just right. If you're like me and your core tends to heat up quickly under effort, then the long sleeve pro team jersey, layered under a jacket should get you through all but the coldest rides. If instead you are focusing on building your base this winter through long, metered efforts or subscribe to the riding slow movement, then I think the classic long sleeve jersey or my favorite, the long sleeve brevet jersey would be a better option as they'll be more versatile through the entire range of winter.
Bottom line, this is a fine addition to your winter wardrobe and a no brainer for fans of the pro team range. Check it out here.
Image source: Rapha.cc