Ride design their gear in the UK and it's made in Italy. They're not a big player in the market but they make some nice cycling kit and it's very fairly priced. This striking Ventoux summer jersey is currently available online for £45 and I really like it. It's part of a range of jerseys taking designs that Ride previously offered on t-shirts, paying homage to some of cycling's great climbs - Mont Ventoux, Alpe D'Huez and Hautacam.
The designers have done a nice job translating them to jersey designs. Each has a large graphic on the front (the Alpe D'Huez one is gorgeous), plus an outline of France on the centre pocket at the rear, with the location of the climb in question. There's a double stripe up the back which integrates the Ride "r" logo - I think this looks really good.
We were sent the Mont Ventoux jersey in blue, plus the plain "Fre" version of the jersey, which is available for a tenner less. The Ventoux jersey has a dashing design which makes reference to French philosopher and cycling fan Roland Barthes's description of the Ventoux as being "un dieu du Mal".
The jersey is made mostly from a comfortable 100% polyester fabric, with the only variation being small mesh panels under the armpits to let the funk out. The fabric has that Italian silky feel and is reasonably breathable, staying comfortable as the temperature rises.
I'm a big fan of a full-length zipper, as much for the ease of putting a jersey on and taking it off as for temperature regulation, and this jersey ticks the box with a full YKK cam-lock zip. Ride have also included a "garage", the little protective flap of fabric over the top end of the zip, to stop it irritating your throat. There's a few touches like this included here, features that you'd expect on jerseys costing more, but which are not necessarily a given at this price point.
Like what, you say? Like the water-resistant fabric used for the zipped valuables pocket - useful to protect your phone from your salty exertions. This pocket also has a YKK zip and there's reflective tape along the zipper. For UK use, it would arguably have been better if this pocket was on the right rather than the left, as this is the only reflective on the back, but this is a minor quibble.
There is also a reflective logo on the right sleeve, which thus far has coped admirably with the attentions of my washing machine. The fabric apparently offers UV protection, but I suspect this is true of most jerseys to a greater or lesser extent - it wasn't something I could really verify. At the bottom is an elasticated strip with silicone grippers in the shape of "ride" logos. This worked ok but wasn't as grippy as some I've used.
Returning to the zipped valuables pocket for a moment, the lining wasn't properly stitched to the zipped opening on one of the two jerseys I tested; the other was fine. A bit of a quality-control issue there.
Ride have cut the jersey for everyday riding, rather than for racing. Accordingly I could fit fairly comfortably in the supplied medium size. I would have liked the torso a mite longer but otherwise found the fit wasn't bad at all - it's cut slim but certainly not skin-tight. I wouldn't choose to race in them but for general riding and all-dayers they're great. Construction of the jersey is fairly simple - seams are not flatlocked and there aren't lots of intricately-shaped panels - but it's well-designed and comfortable in use.
The Ride jerseys have got strong competition in this price band. It's hard to write this sort of review without mentioning dhb, which is really leading the way at the moment in terms of producing high-quality technical cyclewear at modest prices. That said, I think that Ride have done a great job here and these jerseys compete well with the likes of dhb and Altura. The combination of a striking and stylish design with a well-made and comfortable jersey is a real winner at this price.
My only reservation with the Ventoux jersey was that I've not yet had the opportunity to actually ride the God of Evil - and I got a little fed up of having to admit this. If you've conquered Ventoux, Alpe D'Huez or Hautacam then perhaps this is just the celebration - or commemoration - you need.
Striking, comfortable jersey at a great price; best if you've conquered the climb in question
road.cc test report
Make and model: Ride Mont Ventoux Jersey
Size tested: Medium
Tell us what the product is for, and who it's aimed at. What do the manufacturers say about it? How does that compare to your own feelings about it?
At RIDE we work tirelessly to develop clothing which incorporates unique features, contempeory designs, cutting edge materials and innovative ideas. Each garment has been tried and tested by ourselves on the streets, trails and open roads of the UK and beyond.
Tell us some more about the technical aspects of the product?
-Custom Silicon Gripper
-High Wicking Fabric
-Memory Fabric Retains Fit
-Full Length Camlock Zip
Simple but effective - it fits well and is comfortable in use. Includes nice touches like the water-resistant pocket for your phone. The lining on the valuables pocket wasn't stitched properly on one of the two test jerseys - I would send it back if I'd paid for it - but the other one is fine.
Not bad. I wouldn't race in these jerseys but for an all-day ride I'd be very happy to wear them.
The fabric is reasonably soft to the touch and pretty comfortable in use. No flat-lock seams but I didn't find this a problem. Zip garage is a welcome touch.
Decent price for some well-made, attractive kit.
Tell us how the product performed overall when used for its designed purpose
The Fre and Mont Ventoux jerseys from Ride are well-made pieces that work well for everyday riding.
Tell us what you particularly liked about the product
Nice design, comfortable fabric and some good details.
Tell us what you particularly disliked about the product
The stitching in the valuables pocket. The silicone gripper at the bottom wasn't the best I've used, but it's far from a deal-breaker.
Did you enjoy using the product? Yes.
Would you consider buying the product? Yes - especially once I've actually been up Ventoux.
Would you recommend the product to a friend? Yes.
About the tester
Age: 36 Height: 190cm Weight: 78kg
I usually ride: Boardman CX team for the daily commute My best bike is: Rose Xeon CRS
I've been riding for: Over 20 years I ride: Most days I would class myself as: Expert
I regularly do the following types of riding: road racing, time trialling, cyclo cross, commuting, touring, club rides, sportives, general fitness riding, fixed/singlespeed, mtb,
Jez spends his days making robots that drive cars but is happiest when on two wheels. His roots are in mountain biking but he spends more time nowadays on the road, occasionally racing but more often just riding.