The Bering Long Sleeve Jersey from Italian clothing manufacturer Alé is part of its PRR performance range, making that transition from summer race kit to winter training gear and back again practically seamless. With a bit of tactical layering you can make it work over a large temperature range too.
By adding a gilet over the top or with a change of baselayer I've been comfortable from 4°C to 15°C. The beauty of the Bering is just how thin the material is for a long-sleeve jersey. It has so little bulk to it you can make it a part of any layering system.
In the low teens the Bering jersey is in its element; pairing it with a summer baselayer leaves you feeling plenty warm enough and highlights the Alé's breathability – it's yet to be overwhelmed even on the climbs.
There isn't anything overly special about the fabric, it's a pretty basic polyester and elastane mix (85/15%), with enough stretch to give a close-fitting jersey without restricting movement. The inside is fleecy, which helps to trap warm air, though there is no windproofing so an extra layer can be necessary to block a windchill effect.
I mentioned the PRR racer's cut, and it's really the thing that defines the Bering. According to the manufacturer, its designers studied the typical bike positions of pro athletes as the basis for the PRR design to take into account aerodynamics.
To keep the jersey flat and in position Alé uses what it calls the J-Stability System. Around the back you get the usual silicone gripper on the hem but around the sides and front you get a double-layer elastic fabric to secure the jersey all the way round. The front is cut high in relation to the dropped tail, but there's no danger of draughts as it doesn't ride up at all, even when you stand up to climb, and because the material is so flat you don't get any uncomfortable bunching.
The sleeves are a perfect length for me too, with the top of the angled cuff stopping at the end of my wrist when at full stretch, while a more upright riding position didn't cause bunching at the elbow.
We often say you need to try before you buy, especially with European-made clothing as they can come up a little small, but the medium I've been testing was pretty much spot on. I'm a medium in virtually everything I wear on the bike, except for a couple of Italian brands where I'm borderline medium to large.
Other key points are how deep the pockets are. Once your phone, pump and tools are in there they aren't going to come out, even when you're crouched down in the drops. There are three of them, as is the norm, plus you get an additional zipped one for security.
The full zip has a little garage at the top to stop it rubbing the underneath of your chin, and other little details such as reflective strips on the pocket and another garage at the bottom of the zip finish things off.
There are a lot of jerseys on the market, and the Alé comes in at the more expensive end of the range. That £115 buys you a well-made jersey, which feels tough and robust, as well as a little bit racy...
Performance kit for the cooler months with a quality fit
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road.cc test report
Make and model: Alé PRR Bering Long Sleeve Jersey
Size tested: Medium, Blue Fluo/Yellow
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?
A long-sleeved jersey designed for spring and autumn use thanks to a fleeced lined material. The cut is close so performance is the main consideration. I like the Ale PRR Bering mostly for its fit and warmth.
Tell us some more about the technical aspects of the product?
Thermal and fleece stretch fabric to ensure maximum comfort
Full front zipper with garages
J - stability system™
Security Reflex for visibility
The overall stitching quality looks very high, in line with the quality you'd expect for a £100+ jersey.
Very impressive thermal properties for such a lightweight jersey.
The material may not be bulky but it certainly isn't fragile.
The cut is key. Plenty of length in the arms and the back with a sensibly arched front which reduces bunching when on the bike.
The price reflects the quality and performance and stands the jersey in good stead against the competition.
Tell us how the product performed overall when used for its designed purpose
Excellent for fast rides this time of year, and with a bit of layering you can easily make it work on days when the temperature drops.
Tell us what you particularly liked about the product
The very deep pockets.
Tell us what you particularly disliked about the product
Did you enjoy using the product? Yes
Would you consider buying the product? Yes
Would you recommend the product to a friend? Yes
Use this box to explain your score
A solid scoring piece of kit right through the range. The quality is there as is the thinking behind the design; you can tell it's been designed for the performance rider when they are on the bike. The dropped tail, long arms and short front make the fit hard to fault.
About the tester
I usually ride: This month's test bike My best bike is: Mason Definition
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: time trialling, commuting, club rides, sportives, fixed/singlespeed
Stu knocked out his first road.cc review back in 2009 and since then he's chucked the best part of seventy test bikes around the West Country, a couple of them quite literally! With three alloy and two steel bikes in his fleet he's definitely a metal man (that'll be the engineering background) but is slowly warming to that modern carbon fibre stuff along with fat tyres & disc brakes.
It's not all nostalgia though, after spending the last few years in product design Stu keeps banging on about how 3D printing is going to be the next big thing and he's a sucker for a beautiful paint job too.