Our follow up to winter riding clothing begins.  After a bit of use in typical riding conditions, we now begin the follow up on this post here, where we looked at a sampling of technical cycling clothing for the moderate winters of the Southern California Fall-Winter season. We continue with Club Ride.


 

Club RideWe have a three part selection of goods from Club Ride; two of the garments have been very well received, one less so.  Here we go.

Cross Wind Jacket – Mixing casual with functional – $89.95

Club Ride Cross Wind JacketThis one fell a bit short for me, mostly because of the fabric’s poor ability to let moisture out under harder efforts.  Although the body of the jacket has venting panels, the sleeves made a wet mess of my arms when I would ride with a head of steam built up.  It is possible that I received an early production sample that mistakenly was DWR coated twice over, and if so, then the current samples would fare better in this regard.  Even allowing for that possibility, the way other jackets eclipse the Cross Wind Jacket for breathability shows how far technical fabrics have come, like in the Bontrager Stormshell or the Endura MTR Emergency Shell. But they are twice the price!   And when considering cost, many folks do not need a full on wind/rain jacket, and for under a 100 bucks, the Cross Wind Jacket fills a need. The fit is generous as well (but flaps noisily on fast downhills) so if you look at this in a more casual sense, then it would be fine for town cruises, after ride cool downs, and so forth, as it looks right for that sort of thing.  For the right environment, it is fine, but not for the way I would use it.

Club Ride Cross Wind JacketClub Ride Cross Wind Jacket

Rialto Jersey – It’s not all just townie wear – $89.95

Club Ride Rialto JerseyNow, after that less than rapturous report, here is the flip side.  The Rialto Jersey is really well done, and something I have used a lot, mixing it in with several of the other garments in this long series of reports.  I have used it for MTB or gravel rides mostly, but some road too.  It feels good against bare skin, having none of the mild itchiness that some blended wool products produce, it is about the right weight fabric; not too bulky to get under a tight fitting jacket, but thick enough to be on its own with a base layer.  I think the fabric is more ‘poly’ than wool (7% wool), so I was told), but the cost is more moderate as well as compared to a full-on Merino wool blend which more than likely would be twice as much. It is a very functional, simple jersey, good for moderate temps with a base shirt under it, and plays well in a layered system.  I might wish for a full zip (for that feature, check out the Club Ride Mason L/S), but other than that, this is a very nice piece of gear and it is most welcome in my closet.

Club Ride Rialto JerseyClub Ride Rialto Jersey

Phantom Shorts – Right in the middle between town and tech – $79.95

Club Ride Phantom ShortsNow these have been really good to have around as well.  Pitched to me as something in between a baggy and a ‘tighty’ lycra approach, the slim cut Phantoms have been good for gravel bike rides, touring/bikepacking deals, and general MTB XC rides where no pads, etc, were worn (see me wearing them in the pics above).  The fabric is stretchy and gives, not binding or dragging on the legs when pedaling.  The two front pockets slant backwards so anything in there is carried where it does not offend when riding.  It works, even for iPhones, etc (but maybe not a 6+).  You do have to be careful of the pockets though, as anything in there tends to fall forward and out if the pocket is left open.

Worn over a warm short like the Bontrager Thermal bibs, and adding in knee warmers, the Rialtos make a flexible approach to layering up in changing conditions.  Plus they look sharp to my eye, and walking around town or at the coffee shop mid ride, they look normal and stylish.  I have even worn them just for errands with no intentions of cycling at all, and for a long mixed surface ride on the gravel bikes where the wife and I rode from the beach, over some big climbs on remote mountain roads, then to lunch in Solvang, CA, they were the perfect compromise between full-on lycra and MTB baggy.

The only negative I had with them was when worn with a set of Club Ride (how ironic) bib-short liners, as somehow the combo of fabrics conspired to let the shorts slip down on my waist no matter how tight I made the waist adjustment.  It was like I was greased or something.  Worn with any other short, they have been fine.

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Note: The manufacturers of these products provided them at no charge to Twenty Nine Inches for test and review. We are not being paid, nor bribed for these reviews and we will strive to give our honest thoughts and opinions throughout.