Make winter a lot less miserable with the Pedla AquaDRYRace G2 jacket
Words - James Raison . Images - Lana Adams
Race capes are one of my absolute favourite pieces of kit. It took a damned long time for the industry to start making properly waterproof performance gear and praise jeebus it sure made riding in the rain more tolerable.
Enter the Pedla AquaDRY Race G2 jacket. It’s a race cape. It wants you to go fast and stay dry. I like both of those things.
We have “AquaDRY Race eVent” fabric here showing as much consideration for the rain as it shows for consistent capitalisation. None. None at all.
There’s a waterproof zipper at the front holding the jacket together, elasticated cuffs, a long tail to cover-yer-butt, and some lighter paneling on the sides to help you breathe.
I initially thought Pedla had made a mistake when a Medium showed up for testing rather than the Small that I’d requested. Are you calling me fat Pedla? ARE YOU? They weren’t.
This thing is a size down from where I thought it would be. I know, I know, I sound like those insufferable Wiggle reviews that say things like “Damn stupid sizing is all weird cuz I’m always a Large but I need an XL in this… rabble, rabble, rabble” but that’s the case here. This is the only medium sized piece of apparel I own and it’s the right size for me. Still though… rabble…
It’s firm through the torso and very firm in the arms. Alas, my disproportionately long arms are too long for this jacket which means wet wrists. My genetics aren’t Pedla’s fault, and sleeves being too short is a common problem for me so this is a warning for other weirdly proportioned ape-men like myself. Arm length aside, I really like the fit. Toight like a toiger is how I roll.
Adelaide’s record breaking dry June gave me scant opportunity to test the waterproof credentials but this thing became a regular fixture on cold mornings. It’s a damn nice thing to wear and I love the styling so I grabbed it often because I just liked wearing it.
I took Pedla’s claims of breathability seriously though because I’m always sceptical of waterproof gear claiming to breathe. I wore the jacket on a couple of cold nights when I did climbing efforts and it did a damned good job of not drowning me in my own sweat. It breathes pretty well for a waterproof garment. Well played. It puts a good fight up to the wind too.
Once the rain finally arrived I gave it a proper soaking. I was a little sceptical because the jacket doesn’t have sealed seams that are common to waterproof jackets. But when I got wet I stayed dry. I was still expecting those seams to be a weakness so I resolved to get wetter next time and prove my prejudices correct. So I did. Still dry. At this point I got annoyed. I review kit! I know things! My expectations weren't matching reality so again, I tried to get wetter. Finally, finally I had a small amount of rain get through in one spot on my shoulders. But, it was while wearing a backpack and the wet straps were trapping water and rubbing right up against a seam on my shoulder. Now, that’s not really a fair test because my backpack-laden commute is not representative. I have continued to get wet over winter and I’m yet to have any water penetrate the jacket. It seems you have to literally force water against the seam before it capitulates. Impressive for a jacket so light.
It would be remiss of me not to compare this jacket to the best in the biz: the Rapha Pro Team Race Cape. That is one of my absolutely favourite pieces of kit. Is Pedla’s offering as good? No. Why? Zippered cuffs. I like being able to open up the Pro Team Race Cape’s cuffs to let cooling air in when it gets a bit toasty. I need to add some caveats at this point: the Rapha jacket’s zippered cuffs do let water in if it rains enough and Pedla’s jacket is $70 cheaper. So adjusting for price and the cuffs being strength and weakness, these 2 items are very very close.
I dig Pedla’s jacket. It’s aesthetics and performance are very good. It's a competitive entry into the race cape genre. At $310 AUD it’s at the high end of the market but offers broadly similar performance to more expensive alternatives. Check it out if you want to go fast and stay dry.
Purchase: Head on over to Pedla's website to purchase.
Disclosure statement: Pedla sent this jacket for review.