ALÉ Bikewear Green Road Kit Review: Recycled Materials Make Brand New Jersey & Bibshorts
Tucked within a few square miles of Castel D’Ario Italy are arguably the most skilled hands in performance apparel manufacturing. You’ll find several of the brands you would commonly recognize bases here, including Alé Bikewear’s production facilities and HQ.
Alé have become a staple in cycling kit over the past few years, and unlike many brands in the sport, Alé are actually manufacturing product. Typically though, most of these products require the base fabrics to be milled from newly manufactured raw materials. Alé decided to go another, more earth-friendly way with the latest Bibs and Jersey, the new PRR Green.
The jersey is an eco-friendly 90% recycled materials.
The front panel is a weave that is 80% Polyester-Recycled / 20% elastane.
It looks nearly like wool when you take a photo this close, but a different look (a few photo’s below) below will show you the back side. It’s much more breathable than it appears here, and the weave is more about stretch and directional support.
The sleeves are 86% Polyester-Recycled and 14% elastane, and they’re paper thin, but have quite good compression/stretch.
The back fabric and pocket material is 80% Polyester-Recycled and 20% elastane. Oh, and this is all about ventilation.
On the body, the weave isn’t overly sheer/see-through, but toss a little light in the mix and you can see the little leaf-like weave is a very open structure.
A look at the materials for the Front (f), Rear (r) and Sleeve (s).
The front panel is directional support but still breathes. The rear, as noted above, is all amount venting and the sleeve is about stretch and close fitting. Note too the stitching… It’s a thicker fibre that is flocked/fluffed a bit to be soft while remaining durable.
The base/bottom of the jersey is reinforced and there’s a silicone grip-strip to hold things in place a bit as you move…
Note too that there’s a patch of reflective strip at the pocket bottom – though it’s small, it’s fairly bright, but it’s no replacement for a good flashing light.
The back pockets are a reasonable size and have a solid piece of reinforcement stitched in place to form effective retention when you’ve stuffed the pockets.
The overall fit is sport/race… There isn’t much extra room here, which is the way of the performance world now that most companies understand that a loose-fit jersey flapping around is one of the most aerodynamically detrimental things on the bike (beyond the rider).
The PRR Green Jersey will come in a few colors, as shown here, with the best visibility coming by way of the light blue.
Current SRP is US$149.
The PRR Green Bibs also feature a host of Recycled panels…
(S)traps are 40% polyester – 30% recycled polyester-13% elastane and 12 % polyamide
(W)aist insert is 73% polyamide recycled – 27% elastane
(M)ain Panels are 78% polyamide recycled fiber – 22% elastane
(L)eg hem strip is 78% polyester recycled – 22% elastane
The compression for the lags isn’t overly aggressive and the materials move well. The compression and fit match well between the different materials as well – no bulges or pinches as you go from one section top the next.
The back panel is breathable and the straps are robust rather than overly thin and lacking in support (which is the case for some performance bibs).
The chamois is Alé’s in-house kit… Alé actually makes a lot of their own inserts, cutting their own base-padding.
And then on to the finishing outer material.
In this case, the model insert is Ale’s 4H. A 90 KG/cm2 density foam pad.
This is a mid-density, with an open relief channel in the pad. And that tiny center-cut/stitched area in the pad’s surface doesn’t do it justice. There’s much more movement and open relief area on this pad than meets the surface eye.
Flip the shorts over and you can see that the pad separates much more than the top relief stitch. This allows perineum relief AND more free leg movement.
The shorts get a reasonable sized reflective insert in the backs of the legs as well. Nice thinking as movement helps to be seen a bit more than stationary.
The shorts come in matching colorways to the Jerseys and the SRP for these is currently US$174.
Given the cost of some Bib’s these days, $174 for shorts this supportive and with a quality insert seems a bit low.
Given Ale are going the extra Green-Mile using such a high volume of recycled materials, the jersey cost is actually relatively inexpensive too… And this with very good venting and quality stitching and reinforcement throughout.
The fit and finish of both pieces are a modern long-ish sleeve and hem.
The attention to detail that comes from using some of the best fabrication talent in Italy shows up in the construction of the PRR kit.
While the models are Euro-typically thin, Ale’s weave choices and Body-mapping panel cuts mean that these will fit folks that actually have shoulders between their heads and arms. The movement is good with these even for more generally athletic shapes.
These pieces and more are available now from your local retailers and from Ale directly.
You can find more at: https://www.alebikewear.com/
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