Alé’s PRR Bering Jacket is designed for those who still want performance race kit for when things get chilly. The jacket keeps the fit and aerodynamics found on Alé’s summer jersey, but with added windproofing for battling the elements, and it does an excellent job.
To be fair, Alé hasn't just bunged a windproof layer on a Bering jersey here, the tweaks go a little deeper than that, but in essence the Bering Jacket is still the type of kit you could race in. Winter leagues or cyclo-cross, for instance, where a bit of aerodynamics is just as important as keeping warm.
As you'd expect from a jacket in Alé's PRR Performance range, the fit is close, and you get a distinct dropped tail with a raised front so it sits in the perfect position while you're in a racing tuck, without the slightest bit of bunching or rucking. The hem is held in place with a silicone gripper and Alé's own J-Stability System, which incorporates a double-layer, highly elastic fabric that stops the jacket from riding up – even when you stand up in the saddle.
The cuffs are cut at an angle, with the top of the wrist longer than the bottom to reflect the angle your arm is in while riding, giving you a straight edge. The elasticated cuff material is plenty thin enough to sit under a pair of winter gloves, so you certainly don't have to put up with any draughts.
The fabric used on the front panels of the jacket is called Windfront, a lightweight laminated material that's shiny to the touch. It does an excellent job of keeping out any windchill, plus – even though Alé doesn't claim any water resistance properties – it will keep light showers at bay.
The fleece-backed fabric used for the inner retains warmth and offers decent breathability up to about 10°C (for me anyway) with just a baselayer underneath. If you need a little more ventilation you'll find some zips under the arms.
Another neat touch is on the inside upper back. The Bering uses the same fleece-lined polyester/elastane fabric found on the long-sleeve jersey (review coming soon), but Alé has added a piece of thin material attached only on one side, just below the collar. This sits against your back, just taking the edge off the windchill as it passes over your shoulders and back when you're crouched low on the bar.
At the rear you find three deep pockets, deep enough that you never have to worry about anything coming out while descending in the drops, with a fourth zipped one for keys or other valuables.
The full zip has small fabric garages top and bottom to stop anything digging into your chin or catching on your bibtights when you're in the saddle.
Cost wise it isn't cheap, but neither is it overpriced. It feels very well made and the stitching seems robust. The material feels like it'll deal with a few knocks too.
Overall, the Alé PRR Bering Jacket is an excellent addition to the year-round rider's wardrobe. Barring wet weather, as long as you layer it up sensibly it'll happily work from high single figure temperatures right down to sub-zero, making it a pretty useful piece of kit.
Toasty winter jacket that offers all the performance of your summer race kit
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Make and model: Alé PRR Bering Jacket
Size tested: Medium, Titanium/Red
Tell us what the product is for, and who it's aimed at. What do the manufacturers say about it? How does that compare to your own feelings about it?
Being part of Ale's PRR Performance range, the Bering Jacket is designed to behave just like your summer race kit but in the winter months. An aerodynamic cut and quality performing materials means the Bering is just at home racing as it is training. Ale say it has been created by studying professional athlete's riding positions and that's reflected in the fit.
Ale says: "Meant for the real cycling enthusiasts, for those that race and ride granfondo events other than making training sessions. An extremely technical line, using innovative materials. To this kind of rider, Alé offers its high end line, the CLIMA PROTECTION and PRR collection."
Tell us some more about the technical aspects of the product?
*Windfront laminated 3L light
*Thermal fleece fabric in the back
*Long zipper with protective flap
*J - stability system™
*Security Reflex for visibility
*Weight: 421 grams
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Tell us how the product performed overall when used for its designed purpose
The Bering Jacket works well on hard, fast training rides, offering a decent balance of warmth and breathability.
Tell us what you particularly liked about the product
The racer's cut.
Tell us what you particularly disliked about the product
Could do with a few more reflectives for dark winter use than the token strip on one of the pockets.
Did you enjoy using the product? Yes
Would you consider buying the product? Yes
Would you recommend the product to a friend? Yes
Use this box to explain your score
The Bering Jacket is a lovely piece of kit and one that I grabbed every time the temperature dropped below double figures. It's solid, feels great and I was really impressed with the fit. It is very good. Some would quibble over the price, but for the performance, fit and durability the Bering can justify it.
Age: 37 Height: 180cm Weight: 76kg
I usually ride: Kinesis T2 My best bike is: Mason Definition
I've been riding for: 10-20 years I ride: Every day I would class myself as: Expert
I regularly do the following types of riding: time trialling, commuting, club rides, sportives, fixed/singlespeed
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