VeloOne's Spring 2016 kit has landed at La Velocita - Its understated class, quality construction and strong performance make it a kit that is well worth having on your 'need' list.
Brothers Brad and Glenn have opened the doors on VeloOne's Spring 2016 release. It's their third kit offering, and put simply, a huge leap forward when compared to their first two seasons. The guys collected a pile of feedback from customers, went back to the drawing board on cut, fabric and construction and have produced a kit that brings VeloOne into the big game as far as kit goes.
We went with the Unico Star Red Jersey, teamed up with the Navy Performance Cycling Bib and Navy Cycling Gilet. True to the VeloOne brand philosophy, the guys have gone with a clean and classic look. I'm pretty sure that these kits are going to still look great in a few seasons time and won't be dated in days... and I really like the Unico. Both the mens and women's version both look great, and coming from me (I love bright, in your face kit) that's saying something.
VeloOne has designed this season to allow you to purchase multiple jerseys with one pair of bibs and still achieve 'the look'. It's nice to see this rather then needing different bibs for each jersey.
Glenn and Brad love providing a quality product. I don't think it's overstating things to say that they have collectively obsessed over every element of this kit to get it as good as the possibly can. They have chosen Italian and Swiss fabrics that have good stretch, offer a high level of technical performance and feel fantastic to the touch. The quality of construction is right up there with the best I have seen and with a combination of very nicely finished stitched and bonded seams.
ON THE BIKE
When first pulling on this kit there's a instant feel of quality. Starting with the jersey, it moves really nicely with you when on the bike, VeloOne's product performance claims are spot on and they have done really well with the fabric choice. There's none of the bunching in the front panel that I experienced with season 2. I'm particularly loving the longer cut arms with wide bands, on my arms they just felt perfect, a real winner there... I'd even go as far as saying they are the best I've worn. The body length is also spot on for my 188cm frame not too long and not too short.
Being winter in Melbourne, I've been wearing this kit with the VeloOne gilet and arm warmers, combined with a merino base layer. This has seen me feeling comfortable on higher intensity rides down to four or five degrees. I think the guys have found a fabric that can cope with a wide temperature range quite easily. I'm thinking in extreme heat you might go something a bit lighter, but on the whole a great option for the vast majority of riding conditions.
I found the pockets a little bit on the small side, having to 'scrunch' my hands more then usual to rummage around inside them. On long rides I'd potentially want to carry a bit more, saying that, I did manage to pack my VeloOne gilet into the pocket. On the plus the pockets hold your luggage tightly and don't sag or cause pressure on your neck.
I'd class this a more on the 'race' side in cut but just up size if you want more room. Comfort was excellent, the jeresy worked well and I was never conscious of something pulling, rubbing or grabbing. It just stays in place and does what it does with no fuss.
Performance Cycling Bib Short
The bibs have, like the jersey, been completely overhauled. I actually thought the guys did a pretty good job with their season 2, but not satisfied, they went back to the drawing board.
Comfort levels are high, especially where it matters... in the chamois. The guys have gone with a endurance grade chamois that is toward the thicker end of the spectrum. First wear was before washing and they were very nice in this department, just a little firm but after an overnight soak and a run through the washing machine they feel glorious. You could easily sit on this chamois for 5 hours plus... I'd even say it would be a good option up and into double figures.
VeloOne has increased the leg length on the Performance Cycling Bib Short. I still found that I fell into the large size to get the leg length I wanted (I have pretty long knee to hip measurement though), where I'd ideally go medium to get a higher compression level.
The remaining construction is excellent, the shoulders hold in place without being tight, I'd rate compression as medium and the grippers hold firm. Like the Jersey they just get the job done with no fuss. They are a versatile set of bibs that I'm sure will see me through long hours on the bike.
For Melbourne this is pretty much an essential piece of kit. I've got piles of gilets and they all get a good work out. The VeloOne offering is medium weight and as I said above protects well down to pretty cool conditions. Theres's water resistance to, and having been caught in the rain twice in this kit I can confirm that it does the job in rubbish, changeable Melbourne conditions.
Technically everything works really nicely on this gilet. I'd like to have seen the back pockets just a fraction larger as they suffer from the same sizing as the jersey. On the upside it's a very 'clean' looking kit that does not suffer any flapping around the pockets, retaining a great aero finish....
If you're parting with your money for this kit and live in Australia's southern states I'd say the gilet is a must have and will massively increase the usability of the kit. Being plain navy (also comes in black), it should work in with your other kit to.
I'm 188 cm and 80kg and went for a medium jersey, large bib shorts and large gilet. I'm pretty much medium/medium/medium for every other kit I own, so make sure you check the VeloOne size chart.
VeloOne note on their website to go up a size from your jersey to your gilet, I'd 100% agree with this.
Unico Star Red Jersey - $182
Performance Cycling Bib Short - $217
Cycling Gilet - $199
And while you're in the buying mood make sure you check out the arm warmers. These guys are my go to option now.
A real step up from VeloOne, bringing them into line with other premium offerings out there. Their designs are on the understated side and I'm sure will attract those moving away from the more shouty kit out there.
This is not a paid review... La Velocita does not get a proceeds of sales from VeloOne, Cycle Closet or any of VeloOne's other retail outlets.