Hot from the Sportful R&D lab, the Italian company has cooked up a storm with its Sportful R&D Strato jacket. Strato in Italian means layer, and that is basically what Sportful has done by pairing a thermal jersey with a windproof gilet.
This out-of-the box thinking paired with great performance gains the Sportful Strato a place on the Cycling Weekly Editor's Choice 2017.
Pairing a thermal jersey with a windproof gilet seems so simple, and most riders have being doing it for a while, albeit with two separate garments. However, by joining the two, Sportful is offering a great-value option for the autumn and winter months.
The obvious advantage of the pairing is that you get the thermal insulation from the jersey part and the wind protection from the gilet element.
The TDT XP material that makes up much of the jacket is exposed on the arms – which in seriously cold temperatures isn't enough to keep your arms from feeling the chill – and on the middle of the back to allow for heat expulsion. The inside of the Sportful R&D Strato jacket is fleece lined for a nice touch against the skin and continues up for a high neck to help keep out the cold.
The only small gripe here is that the cuffs are a little basic and could do with being slightly tighter.
The Wind Wick LT material on the chest, pockets and shoulders is the gilet part of the jacket and really helps to block out wind chill. You'll find two little zips on the front if you do find yourself overheating, but I was happy in most conditions around 10°C with the jacket allowing for enough breathability to not overheat even on tough climbs.
Temperatures around 5-8°C this jacket excelled and although the jacket will handle a splash of water here and there it isn't waterproof so maybe not the one to take out into heavy rain.
Ultimately this is a very good jacket you can take from autumn into spring if needed. The simple ideal of combining a thermal jersey with a windproof gilet is great: why haven't we done this before?
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