RLX Ralph Lauren Windtunnel Jersey and Pants
By Jon Sharp
It's 6 AM. The sun isn't up yet, but there's just barely enough light to see the trail for a few feet ahead of me. My body is tired from being up early. My lungs are burning because of the cold, early spring air I'm breathing in. I'd be miserable if I weren't dressed for the chill. The right clothing is a key to having a great ride--against all odds.
When I think of Ralph Lauren, I think about $100 collared shirts that executives wear when they go golfing. That's not the sort of thing that will help you on a ride. But, after seeing the RLX Ralph Lauren lineup, I started to change my mental image of Ralph Lauren. The Windtunnel Jersey and Pants from RLX Ralph Lauren is a wonderful example of a technical garment that can greatly enhance the comfort of any cool-weather ride.
The Windtunnel jersey is a lightweight cool-weather jersey. The front is made from a windproof, water-resistant material. On the back of the jersey, under the sleeves, and on the collar and cuffs is Fieldsensor® fabric for increased breathability. It is designed to fight close to the body to help support tired muscles. There are four rear pockets (one of them zippered), and a long front zipper for even greater ventilation, should the weather warm up a bit. The pants are similarly designed with windproof and water-resistant material on the front of the leg and breathable Fieldsensor® fabric on the back of the leg. Both feature reflective tape for visibility, though we found it wasn't very reflective.
Let me first say that this Windtunnel combination is incredible. I found that I usually--even on particularly brisk mornings--only needed these two pieces of clothing to be warm. The combination of windproof fabric on the front with breathable material on the back makes them comfortable in a wide range of temperatures. I could wear them on brisk mornings, even if I knew the temperature would rise a lot before my ride was over. On long uphills, the jersey/pants would breathe well to prevent me from overheating. Conversely, when it came time to turn around and head down a long hill, I didn't get chilly at all because the fabric was windproof. Overall quality for both garments is exceptional.
Summary: The Windtunnel Jersey and Pants go for $180 and $165, respectively. This may seem a bit on the expensive side, but considering the technical nature of these garments and their outstanding quality, the price doesn't seem outrageous. Both are very versatile and can be used for a wide range of temperatures. This makes these the ultimate Spring and Fall attire. This is the first thing I reach for to wear in either of these seasons. I'd recommend the Windtunnel Jersey and Pants to anyone who is looking for versatile, multi-temperature clothing for riding.
Jon Sharp is a Contributing Editor to GearReview.com specializing in mountain biking.
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