The Rasta stripe jersey oozes a very understated, classic cool synonymous with Salsa. Made in the USA from a breathable polyester based airlite micro-plus fabric it features a twenty inch concealed zip and three capacious rear pockets comfortably swallowing the usual suspects (500ml bottle, energy bars, bananas, multi-tool etc).
It ranks amongst the most tactile tops I’ve even worn- although not quite comparable to merino wool. Sizing and cut is exacting, the large fitting me perfectly- generous around the shoulders without being overly baggy at the sleeves. Similarly being black and enjoying a fractionally looser cut makes for a highly versatile garment, complimenting both traditional roadie Lycra and messenger longs. Black is also highly practical in the event of roadside transmission fettling while the red, green and gold provides a funky flavour.
Also available as a summer jersey, the long sleeve as tested is adequate for chill winter riding, drying swiftly following heavy, sporadic showers. It has proved perfectly adequate paired only with a merino wool base layer and gillet in temperatures gracing zero. It also provides welcome protection from more temperate wind and sun - a boon should you burn easily.
The three quarter length zip provides very tuneable climate control and the polyester composition means the jersey works best with natural base layers. Care couldn’t be simpler and experience suggests it won’t emerge fitting the neighbour’s cat following accidental hot washes.
Pricey but very tactile, stylish three-season’s jersey.
Sizes: S, M, L, and XL
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Make and model: Salsa Rasta Jersey
Size tested: L
Tell us what the bike 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?
The Salsa rasta jersey is aimed at enthusiast road riders looking for a three seasons jersey.
Tell us some more about the techincal aspects of the product?
Polyester based "Airlite-micro plus" fabric, three quarter length concealed zip to ensure excellent wicking/breathability
Suprisingly effective at wicking sweat given the poyester base and the fabric has to be the most tactile I've encountered (with the exception of Merino wool)
Resists general abrasion/carelessness and washes very, very well.
Extremely tactile fabric combined with an exacting cut-especially for broad shouldered riders.
Well made but quite pricey, probably due to the global situation and import costs.
Tell us how the product performed overall when used for its designed purpose
I have been very impressed by its performance-especially through the colder months. It has good wicking properties and excellent cut without feeling overly loose, especially at the arms which can be a problem (I am disproportionately broad accross my shoulders relative to my size)
Tell us what you particularly liked about the product
Fit and tactile feel.
Tell us what you particularly disliked about the product
Did you enjoy using the product?: Yes
Would you consider buying the product?: Possibly, although a little pricey
Would you recommend the product to a friend?: Yes
Your overall verdict of the product taking everything into account
A very luxurious and competent jersey for three season's riding.
Age: 35 Height: 1m 81 Weight: 70 kilos
I usually ride: Rough Stuff Tourer Based around 4130 Univega mtb Frameset My best bike is: 1955 Holdsworth Road Path and several others including cross & traditional road
I've been riding for: Over 20 years I ride: Most days I would class myself as: Experienced
I regularly do the following types of riding: cyclo cross, commuting, touring, fixed/singlespeed, mtb,
Shaun Audane is a freelance writer/product tester with over twenty-eight years riding experience, the last twelve (120,000 miles) spent putting bikes and kit through their paces for a variety of publications. Previous generations of his family worked at manufacturing's sharp end, thus Shaun can weld, has a sound understanding of frame building practice and a preference for steel or titanium framesets.
Citing Richard Ballantine and an Au pair as his earliest cycling influences, he is presently writing a cycling book with particular focus upon women, families and disabled audiences (Having been a registered care manager and coached children at Herne Hill Velodrome in earlier careers)