A couple weeks later, the beautiful Vanderkitten cycling jerseys made by Champion Systems arrived. Dave knew I was anxiously waiting to see them, so Tsering and I came over to his house right away to check them out. At first glance, I was in love! Dave’s design looked even better in person than I could have ever imagined. The colors turned out bright and bold and the quality was amazing. I was thrilled when Dave hooked me up with a long sleeve version of the new Vanderkitten La Flora Bella Jersey to try out.
Well, try out I have indeed! I’ve worn my VK jersey almost every day for the past two weeks of winter training. It’s been on sunny, muddy, long, short, wet, dry, fast, slow, fun, and painful rides with me. It’s the perfect jersey for the type of weather we’ve been having this winter. According to Champion Systems, it’s a long sleeve jersey, but its thick enough you could call it a jacket. It’s got a nice layer of soft insulation, a high collar, and a full, sturdy zipper. It will keep you looking cute and feeling warm even in the nastiest weather. On a recent 32 degree morning, I paired it with a short sleeve jersey and some arm warmers underneath and was shocked at how warm I was the whole ride. It also performs great in the mud and rain. Even though it isn’t waterproof, when my friends and I got caught in the rain after sun down on a ride in McKinleyville, I stayed mysteriously toasty and dry. And don’t worry about getting the jersey muddy, the dirt easily came out when I washed it that evening and even though the tag says to hand wash, slackers like me can throw it in the machine without worry.
Vanderkitten cycling gear is indeed as cute as it is functional. One of the things I to really appreciate about the VK jersey is the big, deep rear pockets. There are three roomy pockets along the back of the jersey so you have plenty of room to carry all of your stuff. The pockets are tough too! They have reinforced double stitching to hold all of your goodies. On a recent 4 1/2 hour ride, I easily fit a pump, a multi-tool, a tube, a rain jacket, my keys, 2 energy bars, and a Ziploc bag with ginger cookies and chocolate in my pockets. There was even room to spare!
One of my only concerns with the jersey that I’ve had is that the chest area is a little bit bigger than some other Medium cycling jerseys I have. I’m pretty small, so I was worried that the extra space would make the jersey breezy. In fact, the extra space is great! It’s super easy to layer underneath so you can stay as warm as you want. And the sturdy zipper prevents the cold air from reaching your core. Also, you well-endowed female cyclists out there will be thrilled to have a jersey you don’t have to squeeze the ladies into.
All in all, this jersey rocks! I’m totally in love with mine and would definitely recommend it to anyone looking for a cute, comfortable, and functional cycling jersey. You will be sure to get noticed in this one- whether you’re cruising around town, on a group ride, at spin class, or at the front of the group in your next race. The long sleeve jersey retails for a reasonable $99 online at the Vanderkitten webstore and is worth every penny!