The Endura GV500 Reiver S/S Jersey is a breathable and robust jersey with a great many pockets, making it a good choice for adventure and gravel riding.
Good sleeve length
The more durable fabric feels a little coarser than others
By Stefan Abram published
Scottish-based clothing brand, Endura, worked with ultra-distance cyclist James Hayden to develop its range of clothing designed specifically for gravel riding and more adventurous excursions.
The GV500 Reiver S/S Jersey is part of this new range, drawing its design cues from road jerseys, but with certain tweaks to the fit, material, and number of pockets to make it better suited to these activities.
The construction: GV500 Reiver S/S Jersey
The main body is made from a fabric designed to be lightweight and quick wicking, for comfort on warm rides. The sleeves feature what Endura calls a “super-stretch woven fabric”, which is supposed to be more durable than the materials jerseys are typically made from – better able to shrug off the odd scrape with some foliage.
Of the fabrics used in the jersey, over 50% of them are from recycled sources, which is always good to see.
The fit is designed to be slim and figure hugging, with no excess material annoyingly flapping about. But at the same time, it’s not supposed to be a second skin feel, as you get with a road aero jersey. A careful balancing act, but one Endura seems to have pulled off well.
There isn’t a high cut at the front as you get with some road jerseys either, so the GV500 Reiver S/S Jersey sits more naturally when off the bike. There is still a dropped tail with a silicon gripper in the hem, as well as reflective detailing on the back pockets.
And now onto the pockets – there are loads of them! You get the standard three rear in a fairly typical size, with the one on the right featuring a zipper for valuables. A little further round on each side there’s an extra pocket – these are made a little smaller than the three main rear ones. Finally, there’s also a zipped chest pocket.
Slipping the GV500 Reiver S/S Jersey on in a size small, it came up perfectly. Not too tight in any places, but still quite a nice slim fit that didn’t leave any unwanted flapping. It’s worth noting that this is the smallest size that Endura produces this jersey in. For reference, I’m 177cm and weigh around 68kg – if you’re much smaller than this, you may find it difficult to get an appropriate fit.
There’s also not as yet a women’s specific cut in any of this adventure gravel range, we'd like to see this change in the future.
The main body of the jersey I found to be quite soft against the skin, and with its many small perforations, it’s also proved to be quite breathable. The other fabric that’s used on the sleeves does have a good amount of stretch to it and so far has proved to be durable. However, it does feel a little coarser against the skin than other fabrics.
The contents of your pockets can get horribly sticky if you keep shoving used wrappers back in, and it can make it quite difficult to actually locate that final bar. But with the two extra side pockets, it was quite easy to keep these separate and get a good system going.
I wasn’t so keen on putting heavy and rigid items in there, as I found in this location these tended to bounce around a little more than they would in the main three rear pockets. But items such as arm warmers worked fine in them.
I didn’t find the chest pocket so useful, the location and size of the entry made it a quite difficult to get things in and out, a larger vertically oriented vest pocket could have been much more useable. But even then, the on the bike use could still be quite limited as having items swaying around in front of you can be quite distracting.
For a gravel and adventure optimised jersey, the Endura GV500 Reiver S/S Jersey presents reasonable value at £89.99.
The dhb Aeron Ultra Short Sleeve Jersey was designed in collaboration with Josh Ibbett – like James Hayden, also a former transcontinental winner – and this jersey likewise features additional side pockets and is a little cheaper at £80, although it does miss out on the chest pocket.
Much more expensive is the Attaquer Race Ultra+ Aero Short Sleeve Jersey, which, as the name would suggest, has some aero credentials to it. The sleeves are made quite long and the collar is much lower cut. It only has three rear pockets though and costs £165.00
Starting off riding mountain bikes on the South Downs way, he soon made the switch the road cycling. Now, he’s come full circle and is back out on the trails, although the flat bars have been swapped for the curly ones of a gravel bike.
Always looking for the next challenge, he’s Everested in under 12 hours and ridden the South Downs Double in sub 20. Although dabbling in racing off-road, on-road and virtually, to date his only significant achievement has been winning the National Single-Speed Cross-Country Mountain Bike Championships in 2019.
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