Hackney GT are very involved in the cyclo-cross scene, so this Winter version of their Trackster jersey had a lot of expectations to live up to. Its Windtex fabric and good protective collar and cuffs certainly appealed, as did the roomy pockets. As I generally ride where most car drivers would prefer we didn’t, on the road, I have slightly different requirements from a ‘crosser but I wasn’t left disappointed.
I’ve not had as much time as I’d hoped with the Trackster Winter Jacket because the weather warmed up a bit earlier than it usually does. Despite that I did manage to get out for a couple of longer rides whilst it was still single figures. Even then I only wore a winter base layer underneath because it is quite breathable. The Winter version of the Trackster is well suited to the cold weather and I imagine it’s almost a pleasure to have on really cold days. The brushed lining and windproof material keep the cold without getting too clammy. Although there will always be a bit of sweat when you push yourself it didn’t build up inside the jacket.
As well as using it on my road bike, I’ve also worn the jacket out on trips into town. I live in Cambridge, and the only real way to get anywhere is by bike. The Trackster just about passes for trips to the shops or the pub whilst still looking quite smart. The classic microdot design with ‘HGT’ in a retro font is reminiscent of old disco flyers, and links nicely with the DJ background of the brand’s creator Russ Jones.
The fit is described as ‘aero fit’ and that’s a fair description. I found the jacket quite snug in a medium. The high neck was great for keeping the wind at bay but wasn’t too restrictive, the same goes for the cuffs. I had a bit of room around the chest, but once on the bike there was no flapping about. I wouldn’t want to size down and I’m not sure I could get too many layers on under the jacket because I found the sleeves quite tight around the forearms. The material has a bit of give so it’s not a problem. The silicone band at the rear did a good job of stopping draughts and keeping the tail from riding up.
Both zips function well. The main zip is backed by a wind proof flap. It’s well designed and the material doesn’t get stuck in the zip even when pulled up in a hurry or at an angle. The zip at the rear pocket is just as easy to pull up in a hurry, but the pull tab is a bit tricky to find with winter gloves on.
Speaking of pockets, the three main pockets are some of the most generous pockets I’ve come across. I can get my whole hand in each one, the zipped pocket is apparently big enough for an IPhone 6; my older IPhone fits in with room to spare. I find I eat a lot more on long cold rides so I was grateful for the extra room. After all you can never have too many peanut butter sandwiches when the cold is making every mile that little bit harder.
I didn’t get to test the jacket in a proper downpour, but the brief showers I got caught in didn’t trouble it. More importantly I didn’t feel the cold any worse than I had before the showers.
With the Hackney GT Trackster Winter Jacket you’re buying something that is Made in England; which is nice. You’re also getting a jacket that works well in the Winter, is comfortable and designed to last. As a bonus you’re not really paying a premium for that either. At £109 this isn’t the cheapest Winter jacket, but if you prefer to be outside rather than stuck on an indoor trainer you will appreciate the money as being well spent.
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