This past weekend marked the start of this year’s World Cup campaign. Riders tackled the insanely fast and technical course in Maribor, Slovenia setting the stage for what is going to be another exciting season.
If you’re a little like me, you can’t help but catch the bug when watching such wild and inspired riding. While I could never dream of matching the speed and technical prowess of Loïc Bruni or Tahnée Seagrave it sure doesn’t stop me from wanting to go out and try. With bike parks around the country getting ready to fire the chairlifts back up after the last of winters snow has melted, riders are primed to get going, and I am amongst them.
While I may never ride like a World Cup downhiller that doesn’t mean I can’t dress like one. At the end of last season, we were squeezing in some winter runs down in Tenessee, and Royal Racing was kind enough to send over a few items for us to check out. Royal Racing has been working with athletes developing gear for the better part of 20 years. From Aaron Gwin and Neko Mullaly to Josh “Ratboy” Bryce and the 50to01 crew, the Royal Racing gear is just at home on your local track as it is a World Cup course.
Right out of the bag I was digging the classic style on the Race Jersey. The design reminded me of a toned down version of a 1980’s BMX kit, lightning bolt included. The material is super soft and comfortable on the skin. A problem I have found with a lot of “trail jerseys” is they often feel like you are wearing a glorified trash bag, but not the Race Jersey. The Race Jersey breathes and wicks nicely and even with long sleeves I was more than comfortable during warmer pedals around our local trails. The fit is tailored and streamlined, but there is certainly enough room for elbow pads if so desired.
Along with the jersey, Royal sent along a pair of their Race Pants to complete the kit. The pants were just as comfortable to wear as the jersey. There is plenty of room to move around while accommodating knee pads and being incredibly lightweight. The tapered legs equipped with zippers at the ankle for easy on and off while keeping material away from the moving parts on the bike. Perhaps my favorite feature on the Race Pants is the ratchet strap buckle system. Similar to a snowboard binding, the ratchet belt keeps your pants from slipping, making adjustments fast and easy and most importantly, no velcro. There is plenty of ventilation in these pants to keep you cool on warmer days in the park. If you are the type of rider that prefers to wear shorts regardless of the discipline Royal also offers their Race design in short form.
As I make plans to visit a few of the East Coast bike parks this summer, the Race Kit from Royal will undoubtedly find its way in into my duffel bag. Whether you’re riding lifts at the ski resort or jibbing and jumping with your friends in the woods, the Race Kit from Royal Racing is a solid choice for any day two wheels touch the dirt.