Hi, I'm Andrew. From the moment I watched Stephen Roche rise up through the clouds in pursuit of Pedro Delgado, in the 1987 Tour, I have been a passionate cyclist! I enjoy a range of riding disciplines now, but my main passion is road cycling. I am lucky to ride for Team Wiggle, and I compete in road races and criteriums.
Fluoro love affair
OK, I admit it… like many road cyclists, I used to be a lover of a certain British cycle apparel brand; beginning with R, they use atmospheric black and white imagery in their marketing campaigns.
I used to be a lover of the stealthy look. That was until a friend pointed out that when wearing the kit, I became a bit of an invisible ninja to other road users. Since that day, I have started to develop a love for FLUORO! Alé fulfils that love affair!
Who are Alé Cycle Clothing?
Alé are based in Verona, Italy. They are proud to state that all of their clothing is produced in Italy, and they can also legitimately claim over 30 years of experience in developing and producing cycle clothing.
Review: Alé Velo Active Logo Base Layer
The Alé Velo Active Sleeveless Base Layer is lightweight, it's breathable and looks great. I wore it under a short sleeved Alé jersey in temperatures upwards of 25 Celsius, and it kept me dry and cool.
The material is a mix of polyester, with some elastine/spandex; which must be what gives it its stretchiness. The base layer felt very comfortable to wear and the material has a soft feel.
I also really liked the pattern; with the Alé logo across the garment and some really nice bits of fluro yellow added in for good measure.
I have washed the base layer on a number of occasions and it hasn't lost any of its stretchiness, or faded. It still looks good and feels good.
Review: Alé PRR Camo shorts and jersey
This kit is probably a marmite option. I love it, though. It is a great mix of fluoro and urban camo. Last year, I really liked the look of the camouflage based Saxo Tinkoff team kit, so this kit is right up my alley.
The Alé Graphics PRR Camo Jersey has a great fit; with a quality aero-style gripper on each arm and on the hem of the jersey. Three traditional pockets on the back of the jersey all held up to being stuffed with energy bars, gels, inner tubes and even a rain jacket on long rides.
The Alé Graphics PRR Camo Bib Shorts (SS16) continued the fluorescent camo style; with a really good set of effective leg grippers (a personal bug bear of mine with shorts), as well as comfortable braces. Most importantly for any shorts though; the chamois (Alé 4H) is top quality; I went on a variety of rides in Spain including a very cold and wet 4 hour ride, a hot and hilly 5 hour ride, and a short local time trial; and the chamois performed well on all of these. No pain or numbness.
Review: Alé SS16 Graphics R-Ev1 Master Jersey and shorts
The R-Ev1 shorts and jersey are positioned as the top of the range Alé men's kit; with a race-orientated cut.
The Alé Graphics R-Ev1 Master Bib Shorts shorts instantly have a racey feel. The cut is slightly longer in the leg than the PRR Camo shorts, and it makes them look and feel as aero as possible. Not only did they feel aero, but they also feel comfortable; which let’s be honest, to most of us cyclists is more important. The Alé Double Ergo chamois is one of the best that I have used.
The colours scheme I tested was black with a bright yellow band and orange trim. As I said, I like fluoro; so being mistaken for a European rider when wearing the Alé Graphics R-Ev1 Master Jersey suited me down to the ground.
I wore this kit when I revisited an 11 mile rolling TT in Spain and I knocked over a minute off my previous best time from the year before. Was it all due to the kit? No, of course not (it's due mostly to my hard work!!); but it can't have hurt.
In summary, I am very impressed with the Alé SS16 kit which I have tested so far. I always liked the look of the kit, mainly due to its vibrant colours and euro style; but what has really impressed me is the quality and comfort of the garments from the Italian brand.
From the well thought-out grippers, on both arms and legs; to the well-designed chamois pads in both shorts; the little details make a big difference.
I am very pleased to be living with Alé and look forward to spending this year testing the kit.