Racer Stratos Gore-Tex X-Trafit, £139.99
Time tested: 4000 miles / eight months
What’s good? Gloves are an essential piece of riding kit; dare I say that their comfort is even more crucial for me than it is with helmet. I’ve ridden with uncomfortable helmets before and they’re just that - uncomfortable - but if the fit and feel of gloves aren’t right then they don’t just feel awkward to wear, they interfere with the feel of the controls and can become dangerous. No such worry with these Gore-Tex gloves from Racer. They’re simply beautiful. Supple goatskin leather and a sublime fit mean these are the greatest pair of gloves I’ve ever owned. I’ve ridden in pretty much every weather condition - from the hot sun of the south of France, through to a cold and wet English winter - and they’ve never felt anything other than supremely accomplished. The dual lower-palm and wrist fastenings are excellent and even the seemingly gimmick-like visor wipe on the left thumb does its job admirably.
What’s not? It’s very hard to pick fault with anything else other than the price. At one-hundred-and-forty sheets for a pair of gloves you’ll need to know that these are going to be an investment that will pay you back over time. Eight months and three seasons in, they’re doing just that. As my Nan used to say, ‘you pay cheap, you pay twice’.
Quality rating: 4/5
Value rating: 4/5
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