This might not sound very core, but if I catch sight of myself in my cycling kit, I want to like what I see — or at very least, not cringe because I’m wearing something so loud and ugly not even Jesse Pinkman would rock it. Perhaps I should embrace the dark side, but all my jerseys are plain and simple — solid colors, mostly, with just a little bit off flair. Some old Swobos, two Raphas…and now the Road Holland Ultrect.
Richard Grossman and his partner launched Road Holland because they were sick of ugly road jerseys. All their products are classically designed, generally subtle, and look like, well, normal clothes. The Ultrecht is the best selling one. It’s made with a blended fabric, 39 percent merino wool and 61 percent polyester, which can carry you from the heat of summer (on all but the hottest days) to the beginnings of fall. The polyester helps it dry quickly, and while it isn’t as soft as a Rapha, it has a comfortable, natural fiber feeling against the skin. It doesn’t retain odors, hasn’t pilled or shown any sign of wear after a dozen washings, and other than a small smudge of dirt on the chest stripe that hasn’t washed out, it looks new.
The fit is snug but not tight. The cut is long — pulled to its natural length, it’ll come halfway down your behind — so you don’t have to worry about it riding up and exposing your muffin top in the front or tramp stamp in the back. There are three rear pouch pockets and one small zippered one for ID or keys; the middle pocket is sized for gel or phone, but is deep enough that pulling things out when you’re in the saddle can be tricky. It’s a minor complaint — and the only other I have is that the collar zipper malfunctions and stops about an inch from the top of the collar. Not a problem in summer, but on a chilly fall day it’s nice to have full protection.
The Ultrecht is sewn in Florida from fabric made in Europe. Cost: $120. For more information and to buy, visit roadholland.com.