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The new Fiandre Light Wind Jersey from Italian company Sportful has become one of my go-to tops for cycling on cold and slightly damp days. The Windstopper fabric provides good insulation for brisk tempo riding and the NoRain back panel provides good water repellency for short showers. It's ideal as a top layer over a long sleeve base layer down to 5 °C, or as a mid-layer for cold or wetter days.
Sportful use a Windstopper 4 Way Light fabric for the front-facing panels. It stops the wind in its tracks and it's water resistant. You don't want to head out in a heavy downpour without a rain jacket, but if you get caught in a lighter shower while riding, then the Fiandre Light Wind Jersey offers enough water repellency that you don't need to stop immediately to pull on a rain jacket.
It's better suited to mostly dry and windy days though, with the low risk of a shower or light drizzle in the air. The Windstopper fabric holds back light rain just fine, and thee rear of the jersey is constructed from Sportful's NoRain Thermal fabric which really does keep the rain off your back - useful if you ride without mudguards too. It's not going to be your first choice of a wet ride, that's not really its design brief, but it won't leave you stranded if the weather does make an unexpected change.
It's good in the cold. Sportful says it's ideal for temperatures between 6 and 16 °C, and I found those suggested temperatures about spot on. With a short sleeve base layer you can comfortably wear it into the mid-teens. Swap to a long sleeve merino base layer and it goes down to about 6 or 7 °C and, provided you're riding at a brisk tempo at such low temperatures, provides decent insulation to keep you nice and warm.
The fit is excellent. The size small tested proving a really good cut and shape, sitting flush with the body around the torso, shoulders and arms. All very aero. It's well appointed with pockets. You get three regular rear pockets and there's a small zipped pocket on the left side. I found this invaluable for storing the house keys when out riding, especially handy when heading out with the three pockets fully loaded for a long day in the saddle.
The Fiandre Light Wind Jersey is simply a really versatile jersey with enough insulation for all but the coldest days with ample breathability and water resistance, good as a top or mid-layer that is a perfect fit for most typical UK riding conditions. The jersey part of the name is slightly misleading. It has the flexibility, comfort and lightness of a regular long sleeve jersey, that much is true, but with much more of the protection that a jacket provides, and that makes has made it a staple of my winter cycling wardrobe.
It also looks brilliant in this Belgian blue colour with the lower black section blending seamlessly into bib tights. It's also available in yellow if you really want to stand out, and a more conservative black option.
The Fiandre Light Wind Jersey offers loads of performance for the money and it's so versatile you can wear it for every single autumn, winter and spring ride simply by adjusting the base layer and occasionally adding a jacket over the top to meet the demands of colder or wetter weather. It's best suited to cold windy dry days but it has just enough rain protection for short showers.
Great thermal and windproof jersey with much of the protection of a jacket
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Make and model: Sportful Fiandre Light Wind Jersey
Size tested: small, blue
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?
As light and comfortable as a thermal jersey but with front wind protection and allover water protection. It has a close-to-body fit like a jersey, yet protection like a jacket. A do-it-all piece that makes you rethink how you classify cool-weather clothing.
Fiandre, Italian for 'Flanders,' is a line named after one of the toughest spring classics on the ProTour calendar. What makes it so hard? Because the weather there can be the riders' biggest adversary. Fiandre clothing is designed to let you laugh in the face of rain, wind and mud. Utilizing our NoRain technology, it keeps you dry and warm but has the fit and breathability to let you push on when the pace picks up.
Tell us some more about the technical aspects of the product?
Cut like a jersey, protection like a jacket
Windstopper® 4 Way Light fabric for wind and splash protection
YKK® Vislon® zipper with wind flap
3 rear pockets with reflective piping
Back in NoRain Thermal for high breathability and water repellent insulation
Really good on cold to mild days with a low chance of rain. Really comfortable too, nice and aero and good pockets too.
Sportful kit is really good fitting, but it's on the small side so unless you're a skinny racer you might want to check the sizing guide closely - that's a size small in the pictures for reference.
This is a tricky one. It offers a lot more weather protection than many long sleeve jerseys, and it's much closer to a jacket in that respect. It's very nearly the same price as the stunning Sportful R&D Long Sleeve Wind Jersey, which offers far better cold weather insulation but isn't so good in the rain, and isn't quite as versatile as the Fiandre jersey here.
Tell us how the product performed overall when used for its designed purpose
Does what it sets out to do.
Tell us what you particularly liked about the product
Fit, rain and wind protection, good insulation and breathability for brisk winter riding, looks great in they blue colour.
Tell us what you particularly disliked about the product
There really isn't anything to dislike.
Did you enjoy using the product? Yes.
Would you consider buying the product? Yes.
Would you recommend the product to a friend? Yes.
Anything further to say about the product in conclusion?
The Fiandre Light Wind Jersey offers loads of performance for the money and it's so versatile you can wear it for every single autumn, winter and spring ride simply by adjusting the base layer and occasionally adding a jacket over the top to meet the demands of colder or wetter weather.
Age: 31 Height: 180 Weight: 67
I usually ride: My best bike is:
I've been riding for: 10-20 years I ride: Every day I would class myself as: Expert
I regularly do the following types of riding: road racing, time trialling, cyclo cross, commuting, touring, mtb,
David worked on the road.cc tech team from 2012-2020. 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, and you can now find him over on his own YouTube channel David Arthur - Just Ride Bikes.