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Verdict: 
A strong showing from the fifth generation of the Prologo jersey
Weight: 
169g

The Castelli Prologo V Jersey brings together great breathability, strong looks, and a comfortable fit to create a very good summer cycling top.

The Prologo is now in its fifth iteration, as you can probably tell from the V in the name. Castelli claims it's the closest to the fundamental ideals of what it wants a jersey to be, with the relatively broad claim of creating 'your favorite [sic] jersey' – a big claim. But does it live up to its reputation?

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Breathability is one of the main selling points of the jersey, with Castelli giving it 4/5 on its breathability scale. Here I agree with the Italian company. It has a large mesh vent running down under the arms and across the back, and the rest of the jersey is made from Stratus+, a two-layer fabric that lets heat out really well. The highest temperature I used it in was around 25°C, and it coped admirably. I would happily use this during an Italian summer.

Castelli Prologo V Jersey - riding.jpg

The latest Prologo is a strong, clean looking jersey, with the red version I tested a bright and easily seen primary colour that hasn't faded at all in the six or so washes I have put it through. There is also a smart black band under the pockets, which helps it to blend into black shorts – a clever touch. There is also a shadow logo on the front, which I think looks really classy and doesn't make you feel like a walking billboard. There is also the scorpion logo on the left sleeve and central rear pocket.

Castelli Prologo V Jersey - back.jpg

Fit isn't totally relaxed but not what I would describe as a racing cut: it doesn't make you look like a kid wearing their dad's jersey but it also has a bit of give for those of us who enjoy a pint now and then. Fit is certainly Italian, meaning the large I wore was good for me – I'm normally between a medium and large for UK or US brands. Arm length is about average and certainly not an 'aero reaching your elbow' job. I approve – I find that the tan lines created when flitting between regular and aero arms can take away from the pride of the ruler-straight tan line all(!) cyclists crave.

Castelli Prologo V Jersey - sleeve.jpg

Other features on the jersey include a full length zipper, which helps with ventilation if you need it, and a zip garage at the top to prevent chafing. There is also a strong gripper on the hem, keeping everything in place throughout, regardless of whether I have anything in the three well-sized rear pockets or additional zipped key pocket. Stitching isn't flatlock, but I didn't find any kind of discomfort even on long, hot rides.

Castelli Prologo V Jersey - gripper.jpg

It comes with an RRP of £80, which is about what I'd expect for a well-specced and good looking jersey. People will always say that XYZ is too much, but in this case I would be happy to pay up to £100 for something that performs like this.

> Buyer's Guide: 15 of the best summer cycling jerseys

So is the Prologo V my 'new favorite (sic) jersey'? Possibly. I really like the subtle look, excellent ventilation and good fit, and Castelli has certainly put considerable thought into it. There isn't a whole lot not to like.

Verdict

A strong showing from the fifth generation of the Prologo jersey

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road.cc test report

Make and model: Castelli Prologo V Jersey

Size tested: Large

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?

It's a semi-relaxed fit jersey with good moisture management.

Castelli says: 'We've kept the outstanding moisture management of the Stratus+ two-layer fabric and the relaxed Prologo fit, but we've updated the details, from the collar construction that protects your neck from the zipper to the embossed chest with the Castelli shadow logo. The design feels instantly classic, while the performance is distinctly modern'."

This is pretty accurate: it is a good looking jersey with good moisture management and some nice modern features.

Tell us some more about the technical aspects of the product?

Castelli lists these features:

Stratus+ 2-layer fabric actively moves moisture away from your skin

Shadow chest logo for crisp, clean construction

Mesh side panels and shoulder for cooling and improved fit

Full-length YKK® zipper

3 rear pockets plus zippered key pocket with reflective tape

Weight: 172g

Rate the product for quality of construction:
 
8/10

Well made jersey with strong stitching throughout and decent material choice.

Rate the product for performance:
 
8/10

Performed well, moved moisture quickly and offered good ventilation.

Rate the product for durability:
 
7/10

There are some mesh areas that look more fragile than others, but even these are well made and seem strong.

Rate the product for fit:
 
8/10

Semi-relaxed fit, but without any excess to flap around.

Rate the product for sizing:
 
8/10

Size L fitted as I would expect from an Italian brand.

Rate the product for weight:
 
6/10

Not featherlight, but hardly like riding in a suit of armour.

Rate the product for comfort:
 
8/10

Breathability and wicking, combined with the full length zip and garage at the neck, keep this jersey very comfortable.

Rate the product for value:
 
5/10

It's in the price band I'd expect for the quality.

How easy is the product to care for? How did it respond to being washed?

Simple; washed it multiple times at 30°C without any discolouration or shrinkage.

Tell us how the product performed overall when used for its designed purpose

Well, it did exactly what was needed throughout, providing comfort while on the bike and managing heat sufficiently.

Tell us what you particularly liked about the product

The design, with the vibrant colour and subtle branding really setting it apart.

Tell us what you particularly disliked about the product

Nothing jumps out.

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

Castelli's fifth generation Prologo jersey has good breathability and heat management combined with a strong design and fit.

Overall rating: 8/10

About the tester

Age: 29  Height: 6 ft  Weight:

I usually ride: Mercian King of Mercia or Cinelli Gazzetta  My best bike is: Cannondale Supersix Evo

I've been riding for: 5-10 years  I ride: Every day  I would class myself as: Expert

I regularly do the following types of riding: commuting, club rides, sportives, general fitness riding, fixed/singlespeed, mountain biking

George spends his days flitting between writing about data, running business magazines and writing about sports technology. The latter gave him the impetus (excuse) to get even further into the cycling world before taking the dive and starting his own cycling sites and writing for Road.cc. 

When he is not writing about cycling, he is either out on his bike cursing not living in the countryside or boring anybody who will listen about the latest pro peloton/cycling tech/cycling infrastructure projects.  

2 comments

Avatar
Chris Hayes [346 posts] 1 year ago
1 like

Very important point re: tan lines.  I completely screwed up mine wearing a pro team jersey with slightly longer sleeves on the Norwich 100 yesterday. Today I'll have to ride with strategically-placed factor 50 on my lower arms to blend the lighter brown ring on my biceps!  

Avatar
George Hill [26 posts] 1 year ago
0 likes

Tan line variance on the arms is a big issue for reviewers - in the last month I've had to deal with three different sleeve lengths on review jerseys. However, I've found that the line stays pretty consistent on the legs, so we can all take some solace in that.