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Jerseys to keep you riding when the weather could do anything

Choosing what to wear in summer and winter is fairly easy. In summer as little as possible; in winter everything you own. But autumn and spring, those transitional seasons of unpredictable, changeable and often wet weather, are far more challenging. The last few years have seen the development of a new style of jersey that makes deciding what to wear at this time of year far less tricky.

Ever since a particularly cold and snowy edition of Milan-San Remo in 2013, Castelli’s Gabba jacket has become the de facto choice for cyclists wanting a top layer that can cope with unpredictable weather, the sort that is common through the spring. While ideal for the changeable conditions of spring, the Gabba, and its many imitators, is ideal for winter and autumn too, making it a very good three-season jersey.

>Read more: Design classic — Castelli Gabba

Defined by its figure-hugging fit (because it’s designed for racers who don’t want the bulk of a traditional hardshell waterproof jacket) with a windproof and water-resistant Gore Windstopper fabric, the Gabba paved the way for a new breed of cycling jersey that could cope with a wide range of conditions, keeping you protected from the rain and insulated against the cold, but breathable enough to cope when the temperature rises.

Castelli Gabba 2 jersey - tail

Castelli Gabba 2 jersey - tail

The Gabba was created when professional racer Gabriel Rasch had the idea for a waterproof racing jersey that could be paired with Castelli’s Nanoflex Arm Warmers (arm warmers with a special water resistant treatment). It proved so popular that other teams, not sponsored by Castelli, were clearly seen wearing the jacket during that snowy edition of Milan-San Remo, and social media almost went into meltdown.

Read more: Buyer’s guide - The best waterproof cycling jackets

It’s fair to say the Gabba has gone on to define a whole new category of clothing, and there are now many imitators and alternative versions. They’re classed as jerseys, rather than jackets because they offer the fit and comfort of a jersey, but some of the protection that you would have previously only got from a jacket.

Here is a look at some of the alternatives including, of course, the Gabba.

Castelli Gabba 3 — £75-£150

Castelli Gabba 3.jpg

Castelli Gabba 3.jpg

We have to start with the Gabba, the one that started the craze. It’s now in its third generation and is available with short, long or removable sleeves. A Windstopper X-Lite Plus fabric with a water-repellant finish is used in its construction, with Nano Flex fabric used under the arms. It aims to be lightweight and breathable, and able to protect you from the wind and rain. There’s a storm flap to cover part of your bum and silicone gripper tape in the waist band to stop it all riding up and three pockets with a drain mesh at the bottom. Originally only available in black, it’s now available in a raft of bright colours. Compared to the Gabba 2, the Gabba 3 is more aero, and the drop tail and pockets have been tweaked.

Read our review of the Castelli Gabba 2 

Ashmei 3 Season — £220

Ashmei 3 Season Jersey.jpg

Ashmei 3 Season Jersey.jpg

Two hundred and twenty pounds is an unbelievable amount to spend on a cycling top but can the new ashmei 3 Season Jersey justify its colossal price tag? It has a bloody good go with impressive material choice, cut and attention to detail.

The key time the Ashmei 3 Season works is early spring where the conditions can be warm in the sunshine but as the afternoon turns into evening and the temperature drops you need something more than a standard short sleeved jersey.

The 3 Season is very breathable up to the high teens centigrade so you can whack out a decent pace without overwhelming it while on the flipside it's warm enough when the figures drop into single figures thanks to the fabric being very finely fleece lined to trap body heat.

Read our review of the Ashmei 3 Season Jersey

Planet X 365 Magma Convertible — £34

Planet X 365 Magma Convertible Jacket - riding.jpg

Planet X 365 Magma Convertible Jacket - riding.jpg

This is Yorkshire value-for-money brand Planet X's take on the idea of a long-sleeved rain jersey that can be easily turned into a short-sleever by unzipping the sleeves. And they've made a pertty good fist of it, especially considering the extremely reasonable price. It provides very good rain protection for faster rides. The fit is good, with a long tail, but the weight is more than some rivals.

Read our review of the Planet X 365 Magma Convertible Jacket

Santini Beta Windstopper Short Sleeve Jersey — €145

Santini Beta Windstopper SS Jersey

Santini Beta Windstopper SS Jersey

Santini uses a Windstopper Laminated 178 fabric, a shiny, smooth-feeling material that stops wind and light rain from leaking through, and it’s designed to cope with a 10-20°C temperature range. It’s designed to be versatile, it can be paired with matching arm warmers, and it does cope admirably in the rain, the water beading along the surface. Overheating worries are dealt with by mesh panels under the arms and a regular lycra fabric, rather than Windstopper, is used for the rear panels to aid breathability.

Read our review of the Santini Beta 

Bioracer Speedwear Concept Shirt Tempest Race — €156.20 

Bioracer Speedwear Concept Shirt Tempest Pixel 2017.Jpg

Bioracer Speedwear Concept Shirt Tempest Pixel 2017.Jpg

Belgium company Bioracer uses its own Tempest fabric to make a jersey that is designed for a temperature range between 5°C and 18°C, and in the company’s own words, “bridges the gap between aerodynamics and thermal insulation”. The Tempest fabric has a special treatment applied during the weaving process that forms a water repellant barrier, and because it’s woven, and not a surface treatment, it’s long lasting. It’s also breathable and fast-drying. Bioracer produces a lot of club kit and this one can be customised to match your club or team colours and design.

Endura FS260-Pro SL Classics Jersey — £64.99

endura-fs260-pro-sl-classics-jersey.jpg

endura-fs260-pro-sl-classics-jersey.jpg

Endura’s latest FS260-Pro SL Classics jersey has been tested and developed by the Movistar team it sponsors, providing valuable feedback from some of the toughest races and most demanding athletes. It’s a short sleeve jersey  intended to be used with arm warmers, so you can adapt to warm temperatures and avoid overheating. The jersey is constructed from a softshell fabric with a thermal Roubaix underarm panel, which Endura claims is lightweight, waterproof, windproof and highly breathable. The fit, as you’d expect, is cut for a racer, so it's a close fit. There’s a dropped tail, three pockets and a soft lined inner collar.

Read our review of the Endura FS260-Pro SL Classics

Café du Cycliste Josette jersey — £165 

josette_men_blue_jersey_web.jpg

josette_men_blue_jersey_web.jpg

Café du Cycliste has offered the Josette for a number of years (we first reviewed it in 2013). It’s a short sleeve waterproof jersey made from an Italian fabric and it’s intended for those days, in the company’s own words, “when the weather simply won’t decide what to do next”. The jersey uses a membrane to provide insulation and protection from the weather, along with a DWR treatment on the outside. It has a performance cut, there are vents under the arms, rear pockets with flaps to keep the rain out, and a dropped tail.

Read our review of the Café du Cycliste Josette

Rapha Pro Team Long Sleeve Shadow Jersey — £240 

Rapha Pro Team Shadow Long Sleeve jersey

Rapha Pro Team Shadow Long Sleeve jersey

Rapha’s attempt at a Gabba-style jersey was designed to meet the demands faced by Team Sky, able to deal with rain, wind and changeable conditions that can make it challenging to dress accordingly when racing. Rapha has made the Shadow by developing a single layer fabric that is treated at yarn level with a durable water repellent not once, but twice. The result, according to Rapha, is a material that provides excellent water repellency, wind resistance, and breathability.  The cut of the jersey is streamlined. 

Read our review of the Rapha Pro Team Shadow

Parentini Mossa 2 — £194.99 

Parentini-Mossa-Yellow-2.jpg

Parentini-Mossa-Yellow-2.jpg

The Mossa 2 is an Italian designed and manufactured race-fit waterproof and windproof jersey. Parentini uses a Windtex Storm Shield laminate fabric to make the jersey, and it is breathable and wind resistant. The updated Mossa 2 provides a slightly more relaxed fit than the previous Mossa jersey, but it’s still a close fit, there is no excess fabric to flap in the wind. Features include two rear pockets, a high collar, reflective logos and an elasticated waistband.

Gore Wear Power Windstopper Softshell Jersey — £70

Gore Power Windstoper Softshell Jersey - riding.jpg

Gore Power Windstoper Softshell Jersey - riding.jpg

You’ll notice that the Gabba, and other similar jerseys, are made from Gore’s Windstopper fabric. This year the company has launched a new three-layer Windstopper material that it reckons is ideal for temperatures between 10°C and 20°C and eliminates the need for an additional layer in uncertain conditions. It’s been designed to be able to cope with early morning cold temperatures without an extra layer but then cope as the temperature increases during the day, so you don’t have to carry any excess clothing that you might peel away as the weather improves. This is Gore's own version; we expect to see jerseys in this fabric from  other companies such as Löffler, Maloja, Odlo, Santini and Etxe Ondo soon.

The price above is for the black version. You can also get it in blue for £70.

Read our review of the Gore Bike Wear Power Windstopper Softshell Jersey

[This article was last updated on August 21, 2017]

David has worked on the road.cc tech team since July 2012. Previously he was editor of Bikemagic.com and before that staff writer at RCUK. He's a seasoned cyclist of all disciplines, from road to mountain biking, touring to cyclo-cross, he only wishes he had time to ride them all. He's mildly competitive, though he'll never admit it, and is a frequent road racer but is too lazy to do really well. He currently resides in the Cotswolds.

46 comments

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Leviathan [2904 posts] 1 year ago
0 likes

A Gabba by any other name would wick some sweat?

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dave_t [16 posts] 1 year ago
7 likes

Nope, still can't afford any of them.

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ct [198 posts] 1 year ago
1 like

Surely Decathlon do one...

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ct [198 posts] 1 year ago
0 likes

Surely Decathlon do one...

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cdamian [178 posts] 1 year ago
0 likes

I'm a bit surprised that the dhb Aeron Rain Defence jersey was not included.

Castelli Perfetto Short Sleeve jersey is also a good option. A bit cheaper and lighter than Gabba.

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Danno [19 posts] 1 year ago
0 likes

What about the Stolen Goat Orkaan you reviewed as "Out gabba's the Castelli gabba" http://road.cc/content/review/144507-stolen-goat-orkaan-race-tech-jersey

I love mine it works and doesn't need re-treating.

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davel [2055 posts] 1 year ago
2 likes

The model looks a little too excited by the gabba in the top pic.

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fustuarium [243 posts] 1 year ago
0 likes
Danno wrote:

What about the Stolen Goat Orkaan you reviewed...

I love mine it works and doesn't need re-treating.

I asked this last year and apparently it's a rebranded bioracer. Whether or not its the tempest above I'm not sure (bit like the new Gore will be sold under a number of brands)

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tonyleatham [54 posts] 1 year ago
0 likes
Danno wrote:

What about the Stolen Goat Orkaan you reviewed as "Out gabba's the Castelli gabba" http://road.cc/content/review/144507-stolen-goat-orkaan-race-tech-jersey

I love mine it works and doesn't need re-treating.

Stolen Goat is effectively the bioracer one, branded as theirs

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fukawitribe [2088 posts] 1 year ago
0 likes

@fustuarium @tonyletham Bioracer manufacture for StolenGoat, this much is open knowledge e.g.

https://stolengoat.com/cycle-clothing-best/

..but the patterns are not Bioracers designs AFAIK (who hold the pattern rights it would seem).

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riotgibbon [231 posts] 1 year ago
0 likes

I got a Stolen Goat Orkaan  last month on the back of reviews and comments here,  and it's still yet to rain so I can give it a good workout!   I've been wearing Rapha mesh merino  base layer with pro-team long sleeve jerseys (from the sale, Decathaletes) which have been astounding at keeping me warm but not overly wet inside even down to about 0C on early mornings (I sweat just looking at a bike, thinking about even), but on the couple of times I've worn the Orkaan, I've felt a little  bit of a chill through it when wearing the mesh underneath. Maybe a thicker base layer underneath, but I don't want to get too hot underneath ...

Looking forward to the proper scuzzy weather, I always prefer riding in that, but no "waterproof" has ever really worked out, can't wait to see how the Goat holds up. I got some arm and leg warmers at the same time, I wearing the legs most days, nice and cozy (but also yet to prove themselves in the deluge)

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terrycojones [32 posts] 1 year ago
2 likes
fustuarium wrote:
Danno wrote:

What about the Stolen Goat Orkaan you reviewed...

I love mine it works and doesn't need re-treating.

I asked this last year and apparently it's a rebranded bioracer. Whether or not its the tempest above I'm not sure (bit like the new Gore will be sold under a number of brands)

 

+1 (again) on the Stolen Goat orkaan. I rode in one all last UK winter (Cambridgeshire) with only a merino baselayer under it. Rain, snow, cold - no problem. Then I bought another top & the long bibs 1/2 price or so on Wiggle at the end of last winter. I've only worn the bibs a few times, but like them. The jersey is wonderful.

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terrycojones [32 posts] 1 year ago
0 likes
riotgibbon wrote:

I got a Stolen Goat Orkaan  last month on the back of reviews and comments here,  and it's still yet to rain so I can give it a good workout!   I've been wearing Rapha mesh merino  base layer with pro-team long sleeve jerseys (from the sale, Decathaletes) which have been astounding at keeping me warm but not overly wet inside even down to about 0C on early mornings (I sweat just looking at a bike, thinking about even), but on the couple of times I've worn the Orkaan, I've felt a little  bit of a chill through it when wearing the mesh underneath. Maybe a thicker base layer underneath, but I don't want to get too hot underneath ...

Looking forward to the proper scuzzy weather, I always prefer riding in that, but no "waterproof" has ever really worked out, can't wait to see how the Goat holds up. I got some arm and leg warmers at the same time, I wearing the legs most days, nice and cozy (but also yet to prove themselves in the deluge)

The Stolen Goat isn't meant to be 100% waterproof, I guess you know? The first time out with mine, it was in the rain 3.5 hours and I got home and the jersey was totally dry inside - I mean bone dry. But more recently, I did an everesting that included maybe 7 hours in the rain (heavier) and the SG jersey got thoroughly drenched.  So it's a tradeoff - very good water resistance and breathabiltiy, rather than fully waterproof and not so breathable. But you probably know all that!

I got an Endura FS260 fully waterproof jacket (not the one above, this one http://road.cc/content/review/187466-endura-fs260-pro-sl-shell ) and it's really fantastic. This winter I'm expecting some baselayer + SG + FS260 rainy days. Almost looking forward to it  1

 

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bendertherobot [1484 posts] 1 year ago
1 like

Did the editor get bored of "read our review of" by the last two?

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riotgibbon [231 posts] 1 year ago
1 like

ok, goat fans, in the interests of science, I conducted an extremely thorough experiment this morning, by wearing my Orkaan in

It was a misty morning, roughly 7C, light  following wind. I averaged 17mph for 19.5 miles, about 1 hour 10 minutes. Most of it was on open countryside roads, with a little bit of town through Windsor then 10 minutes along the Thames from Sonning to Reading

I wore a mesh base layer underneath, and a gilet on top for the first 10 minutes. I had Rapha pro-team thermal shorts and SG Orkaan legwarmers - legs were lovely and cosy, full Ready-Brek effect.

The top, especially when I took off the gilet, did have a slightly cool, possibly clammy feel, which might be the mesh base layer, whilst I was moving, but I strangely felt much warmer when stopped. I was in no way cold, but wasn't quite getting the Ready-Brek glow *when moving*, whereas I do with the rapha  mesh/pro-team long sleeve in even colder conditions.   I am trundling along in reasonable conditions though, rather than giving it the full Roger De Vlaeminck in a Flemish thunderstorm

Be interesting to see how it goes with different base layers and weather conditions. I would say I should get out more, but this is what happens when I do ...

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The _Kaner [1150 posts] 1 year ago
0 likes

No Hoy Fortress by Vulpine?

edit: Hold that thought...issues with pocket stitching after 2 rides....

indecision

 

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PeterM [28 posts] 1 year ago
0 likes

 

Capo Lombardia - although I don't know if it is still made. A shame if it is not. Oh yeah, is there not a Lusso product that is supposedly very good...albeit £130

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stolen goat [12 posts] 1 year ago
4 likes

wow - thanks for all the positive comments everyone! very much appreciated smiley.

 

I can see why we aren't in this write up. Our Orkaan jerseys are indeed manufactured by Bioracer and we make no effort to hide that, in fact we are mighty proud of the fact. It enables us to focus on customer service, bespoke designs and fine tuning our business in order to keep the prices smart. Bioracer worry about garment innovation and they have 25 years of race-winning experience there  1

 

On the flip side, it's potentially very beneficial for folks to know we are out there as an option. Our Everyday Orkaan jersey comes in at £95 for example and also includes the super reflective rear pockets that the Bioracer tempest jersey listed does not. Ours also has an extra 4th zipped pocket.

We also have Orkaan bib shorts, ¾ tights and accessories to match.

 

You could (for example) choose a colourful, reflective and extremely effective stolen goat Orkaan jersey and Orkaan bib shorts and still have £10 left in your pocket compared to the Rapha shadow jersey. #JustSaying (dear Rapha, we're not starting a fight, honest xx)

 

You can read a little more here if you’re interested...

https://stolengoat.com/reflective-waterproof-cycling-jersey/

 

Whatever you choose, wherever you choose to buy it from, these kind of jerseys are really flipping smart. It's so nice to not be worried about every looming rain cloud in the sky! Over and out  1

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Clarionista [13 posts] 1 year ago
2 likes

10 of the best....from reviewing how many?

Agree with the sentiments about Stoeln Goat.

If you're going to certain items then at least say which you reviewed and which didn't chart!

I own a Gabba and Perfetto. They're great. I also own a Spokesman Ghost jersey, which is better IMO. Not on the list but like Stolen Goat, I'm sure it's had a tremendous review previously!

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The _Kaner [1150 posts] 1 year ago
0 likes
stolen goat wrote:

Our Everyday Orkaan jersey comes in at £95..... 

Do you have measurements from collar to waistband for both the front and rear of this jersey?

I could only find chest sizes in the description on website.

(Both in M and L sizes - if possible)

Thanks...

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stolen goat [12 posts] 1 year ago
0 likes
The _Kaner wrote:
stolen goat wrote:

Our Everyday Orkaan jersey comes in at £95..... 

Do you have measurements from collar to waistband for both the front and rear of this jersey?

I could only find chest sizes in the description on website.

(Both in M and L sizes - if possible)

Thanks...

Hi there, no problem, drop us an email : help [at] stolengoat.com

Many thanks

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The _Kaner [1150 posts] 1 year ago
0 likes

"Hi there, no problem, drop us an email : help [at] stolengoat.com Many thanks"

Will do...cheers.

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KendalRed [115 posts] 1 year ago
0 likes

I wore the Cafe Du Cycliste Josette on a recent sportive that had a fair share  of drizzle, but it did end up wet through. Not sure if this was from the outside or the inside - I suspect the temperatures got above the recommended 15 degrees, so the breathability may have been compromised, especially as I had a thin gilet over the top and a thin merino base underneath (couldn't take the gilet off for reasons I won't bore anyone with).

I do like the CdC stuff on the whole, and I did get this with a good discount, but not sure I'd recommend it over the others in this list. I have had a Mossa (1st iteration) and also found that got very wet from the inside, and my old Gabba long since gave up the water-resistant ghost.

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Disfunctional_T... [263 posts] 1 year ago
0 likes
Clarionista wrote:

I also own a Spokesman Ghost jersey, which is better IMO.

Looking at their website, it's just a standard jersey. Why would you compare it to the Gabba? Am I missing something?

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cdamian [178 posts] 1 year ago
0 likes
Clarionista wrote:

I own a Gabba and Perfetto. They're great. I also own a Spokesman Ghost jersey

How would you compare the Perfetto and the Gabba? I might get the Gabba too.

But the Ghost seems to be a jacket?

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Milkfloat [57 posts] 1 year ago
0 likes

I had a Goat, but found the fit to be very weird, it certainly performed well enough and the reflective pockets were great, but in the end I sold it and bought a Gabba.  The Gabba has a much better fit for me, seems more windproof and crucially has a decent drop tail.  I would buy another in Gabba a heartbeat.

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Freddy56 [285 posts] 1 year ago
0 likes
dave_t wrote:

Nope, still can't afford any of them.

Galibier's newsletter said they are bringing out one in December. Full breathable membrane jersey for under £70.  If it is as good as their membrane jacket- it is as good as ANY of the above.

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gunswick [122 posts] 1 year ago
1 like

I had never heard of stolen goat before today, so +1 for the commenters and -1 for road.cc

I have a gabba LS for winter and early spring / late autumn & perfetto for late spring and summer and early autumn (with arm warmers if needed).

When they go to retirement I will look at the SG Orkaan range. Thanks!

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hsiaolc [367 posts] 1 year ago
0 likes
Freddy56 wrote:
dave_t wrote:

Nope, still can't afford any of them.

Galibier's newsletter said they are bringing out one in December. Full breathable membrane jersey for under £70.  If it is as good as their membrane jacket- it is as good as ANY of the above.

I just think they need a bit more hmm style and design.  I just can't get myself to buy something yet from them eventhough I desperately wanted to. 

Some of their design is shockly ugly. 

 

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hsiaolc [367 posts] 1 year ago
0 likes
gunswick wrote:

I had never heard of stolen goat before today, so +1 for the commenters and -1 for road.cc I have a gabba LS for winter and early spring / late autumn & perfetto for late spring and summer and early autumn (with arm warmers if needed). When they go to retirement I will look at the SG Orkaan range. Thanks!

Gabba 2 for all three seasons. I wouldn't waste money on anything else. Thats coming from buying Rapha, Pactimo, DHB, Assos,  etc the list keeps going. 

 

If only I listened earlier I would have saved a lot of money on so many jerseys. 

 

In summer nothing beats Caselli climbers jesey either. 

 

Only Rapha beats them in style though.  

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