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Chapeau Club Thermal LS jersey review

30 Oct 2020
Verdict:

Slightly heavier than most long sleeve jerseys, Chapeau’s adds extra warmth

Cyclist Rating: 
Price: 
£99.99
For 
Dense fleece for warmth • Comfortable
Against 
Still lets wind through • Rather draughty collar

With the onset of cooler weather, a long sleeve jersey adds insulation. The Chapeau Club Thermal jersey is a little more thickly fleece-backed than many long sleeves, so it’s that bit warmer.

If you’re into long sleeve jerseys, the Chapeau Club Thermal is a good option. But as tends to be the case with long sleeve jerseys, there’s no windproofing in Chapeau’s number so on long descents and before I’d warmed up I found the wind chill on my arms slightly uncomfortable.

 

With a long sleeve base layer underneath, I was comfortable on steady rides at morning temperatures around 10 degrees C, although in warmer weather even when paired with a sleeveless mesh summer base layer I found I was overheating on longer, steeper climbs.

Buy now from Chapeau! for £99.99

The windchill on descents was added to by the rather low collar on the Chapeau Club Thermal jersey. It isn’t very close-fitting either, so I found I was getting a bit of a draught down my front too when on fast downhills.

Conversely, at the bottom end of the jersey the fit is close, helped by a grippy silicone strip at the hem. There’s an insulating storm flap behind the zip that doubles over at the top, to stop the puller from irritating your chin.

 

There’s a pronounced drop to the tail too, to help keep your lower back warmer when in the riding position. Warmth is augmented by the double layer of fleece at the pockets, while the central pocket has a waterproof inner pocket, with a zip on the outside of the jersey, that helps keep wheelspray from wetting your back too much.

Although the navy blue fabric isn’t going to up your road presence, the darker blue, shiny band that extends all the way around the jersey mid-chest is retro-reflective, as is the Chapeau logo on the right pocket. Between them they add a bit more visibility than the reflective tabs typically sewn into cycling kit.

 

There’s a range of brighter colour options for the Club Thermal jersey, if you’d prefer something less stealthy, although the navy blue has a stylish look to it.

Although the Chapeau Club Thermal jersey is well made, it’s probably not an item I’d select to wear on many rides, due to the lack of options to regulate your warmth.

Buy now from Chapeau! for £99.99

That’s an issue I have with long sleeve jerseys in general and not unique to the Club Thermal. In general, I prefer to ride in a short sleeve jersey and armwarmers, perhaps supplemented by a packable gilet when it’s not too cold, moving to a full jacket with some built-in windproofing once things get to the mid-zeros.

Pop a windproof jacket over the Chapeau Club Thermal jersey and it should serve you down to lower temperatures though. That adds versatility to what’s otherwise a piece of kit that on its own would only cope with quite a narrow temperature range, meaning that you’d probably only get limited use from it each year.

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