Slipping into fresh apparel on new kit day is always a blast. You turn in front of the mirror checking yourself out from all angles admiring the design you’ve only seen on computer screens. The first couple of rides are always pretty exciting too as you catch your glimpse in store-front windows and get compliments from your riding mates.
When Canadian Cycling Magazine decided to order new kit, we tried out Giordana’s FR-C Pro model bibs and jersey. We also ordered the Tenax Pro wind vest for our autumn and spring riding needs. The FR-C Pro is the company’s top-end and newest custom kit offering. It was the same apparel worn at the WorldTour level in 2017 by Astana and Orica-Scott.
You can read all about the process of designing and ordering fresh custom threads with Giordana here.
FR-C Pro jersey
The Giordana FR-C Pro jersey is form-fitted for racing but not shrink-wrap tight. It’s made with panels of lightweight mesh and moisture-wicking fabrics for warm-weather riding. The jersey is breathable and stretches nicely to sit comfortably on the torso. On the hottest days, the jersey provides excellent ventilation to keep your body cool. What stitching is present is subtle flat-lock. Fabric edges are all cleanly bounded and finished
The race-fit FR-C Pro jersey has sleeves that go almost to the elbow, very on-trend. The wide mesh cuff grippers hold the jersey comfortably in place but are not so tight to feel restrictive. The gripper on the back of the jersey keeps everything in place comfortably even when the pockets are loaded down. Each pocket is large enough to fit a jacket and plenty of supplies. They are well positioned and easily reachable when you are on the bike.
The FR-C Pro jersey feels fast. No fabric flaps in the wind when riding full speed so you can focus on turning the pedals during hard efforts. The tight stitching and solid construction indicate durability should be good over the long haul.
FR-C Pro bib shorts
Like the jersey, the bibs are form fitting with a soft compression. The stitching is well placed, even and tight to ensure an excellent fit. While wearing the bibs, the pedal motion feels natural with minimal bunching at the hip crease. Moving from in the saddle to standing doesn’t cause any movement in the bibs with everything held in place by lightweight straps that sit comfortably without pulling or causing tension.
The bibs use a Cirro chamois. It falls in the middle of the spectrum between thick and thin. The lightweight fabrics don’t absorb moisture. It’s also well ventilated so after a long day, it still feels fresh. While each individual will have his own chamois preferences, nobody in the office found it to have uncomfortable pressure points.
Tenax Pro wind vest
The front of the Tenax Pro wind vest has a wind- and water-resistant fabric. An extremely light mesh is found on the back to keep you from over-heating. A high collar keeps your neck protect from the breeze. The zipper is solid, making it easy to handle if you choose to unzip when you begin to over-heat. It’s also easy to do back up before a descent.
A very nice touch is the optional pockets on the gilet, which can be used to store layers you are peeling off, snacks or gloves. Not all vests have pockets making the ones that do greatly appreciated.
The Tenax Pro is a versatile piece that won’t be stuffy on warm days and will keep a cool wind out on descents or on brisk rides. With a pair of arm warmers, the vest became one of the most versatile pieces in our wardrobe. That’s the magic of a good gilet: you’ll find yourself reaching for it more often than you perhaps anticipated. At first, getting a garment without sleeves may seem a little silly, but you won’t be thinking that once you realize how useful it can be on a variety of rides.