We’ve been testing a collection of winter clothing from Sumattory for four months.
The face of this Spanish brand is 2010 world mountain bike champion, Jose Antonio Hermida, but we found little in the aesthetic and tailoring of this collection to suggest off-road action.
For a detailed description of the fit and fabrics of each garment, see our ‘first look’ article.
Here we’ll focus on how they performed during an extended test period characterised by freezing temperatures.
Winter long bib tight
Our test pilot, one of those irritating fellows whose default setting is immaculate, described the fit of Sumattory’s winter long bib tight as, well, immaculate (“no bags, no wrinkles, no anything”).
The bib straps were broad and comfortable, and while many companies now employ laser cut lycra braces instead of a solid fabric border to a mesh strap in a bid to lighten the load, we considered comfort more important than weight in a winter tight.
The instructions recommend washing the tights before use, and having failed to do so, our test pilot suffered slight chafing from the Elastic Interface pad on the initial ride (“nothing major,” he reports). Subsequent washes softened the pad to create an extremely comfortable ride (“really, really nice”) which remained a factor throughout an extended test period.
The Sumattory Winter Long Bib Tight is available in black, in six sizes from S to XXL, and costs £105.
Winter Jersey UW
Despite the monicker, the Winter Jersey UW is a base layer. Our test pilot reported a supportive, compressive feel from its Prolen fabric, which followed an extremely close cut. He was impressed by its wicking abilities and also by its ability to regain its shape after washing. Removing it after a ride left it slightly baggy, he reported, but after a trip through the washing machine, it regained its original, compressive feel. Our initial fears about an absence of silicone or elastic grippers at the hem or sleeves proved groundless. The garment remained in place throughout rides spent variously hunched over the bars and stood on the pedals.
The Sumattory Winter Jersey UW is available in white, and in three sizes: XSS, ML, and XLXXL. It costs £48.75.
Winter Stripe Jersey
The Winter Stripe Jersey was another garment whose fit impressed us. Our test pilot reported a short front, and a tail, that, while dropped, was not so long that it risked sagging when pockets were loaded. The deep pockets also found favour (the deepest of them all, the centre pocket, provided safe harbour for a pump). His one criticism concerned the low neck, which provided little coverage.
Versatility was another area highlighted by our man in the jersey. He wore it as a mid-layer on days when the mercury fell to zero, layered with the above mentioned Winter Jersey UW base layer and the Winter Stripe Jacket (see below). Worn on winter training rides i.e. long but without too much exertion, and paired with lightweight gloves and overshoes, he remained comfortable.
Additionally, the jersey looks likely to become a staple of our test pilot’s spring wardrobe, when, he believes, it will do good service as an outer layer, or perhaps beneath a gilet on windy days. “I’d expect to do a lot of mileage in that piece,” he says.
A word here on the aesthetics of the Winter Stripe Jersey: the opinion at RCUK Towers that it is one of the most attractive garments to cross the threshold was shared by our test pilot, who highlighted its many pleasing details (a small, multi-coloured tab on the hem, for example) and the number of enquiries from riding buddies. Sumattory’s low profile in the UK added an air of exclusivity to its chic appearance, he felt.
The Sumattory Winter Stripe Jersey is available in the black, white, and royal blue pictured, and also in white, with a black chest panel and orange stripe. It costs £108.75 and is available in six sizes from S to XXL.
Winter Stripe Jacket
The Winter Stripe Jacket worked well as part of a layering system. Our test pilot was impressed by its lack of bulk, and how its generally slim profile didn’t hamper its ability to keep him warm (“a good combination of weight and size”).
Our concerns about the low collar on the Winter Stripe Jersey were repeated here, and while this may yet prove beneficial on the jersey when worn in spring as an outer layer, on a garment designed solely for cold weather use, it is a deficiency.
Otherwise, the fit was excellent, making the internal cinch pull at the waist redundant (“a feature for a feature’s sake”). Broad-shouldered triathletes might benefit here, but cyclists are unlikely to so. Of greater use were the lightweight Velcro cuff closures.
The front of the jacket was shorter even than that of the jersey, but again, we considered this a good thing. Off the bike, when stood bolt upright, the hem of the jersey was visible beneath the jacket; on the bike, however, there was no unsightly ‘ballooning’ of the fabric.
The WindTex panels were effective in cheating the wind; the ventilation panels in the sides less so at letting it through. Opening the chest zip was our quick and easy solution, an fuss-free exercise thanks to the quality of a zip which could be operated with one hand and which remained free from ‘snagging’.
We get nervous when clothing manufacturers deviate from the ‘ain’t-broke-don’t-fix-it’ three-pocket configuration on the tail of a jersey or jacket, but Sumattory’s two pockets, covered with a flap, didn’t cause our test pilot undue concern. The pockets were sufficiently deep and the flap didn’t prove a hindrance to removing and replacing items on the fly, he reported.
The Summatory Winter Stripe Jacket is available in grey and white, and in six sizes, from S to XXL. It costs £168.75.