I have been using a pair of Altura mitts in spring criterium racing, and after testing them in a range of conditions it’s time to give my opinion on them.
The mitts are fingerless, with a crochet string back of the hand, and synthetic suede on the palm and bar contact areas. These are joined by elasticated material between each finger allowing easy movement. On the back of the thumb there is a large microfibre patch that acts as a sweat/nose wipe. The final feature is on the underside of the fingers, there is a double layer of suede to pull the glove off without turning it inside-out.
Without a doubt the key selling point of the Altura Classic 2 mitts is their classic look. I was looking for a consistent contact patch that would match any race kit I might be wearing, and the classic looks meant that was always going to be the case. Even with the relatively complicated construction, the mitts have been extremely hard wearing, and look similar after 3 months of regular use to how they first arrived. In particular the glove hasn’t shown any discolouration, normally a worry with white kit. If colour is a real concern the same gloves are available in black.
The gloves are largely very comfortable, sensible sizing meaning that there are no areas that pull on my hands. A thin layer of padding is well positioned on the heel of the hand and at the base of the fingers. One issue with this padding is that it doesn’t continue onto the ball of the thumb. Padding is always a personal preference, but I felt there was some protection missing when pressing into the brake hoods on a technical race circuit. Also on the underside of the glove are the pull tabs for glove removal. Whilst this is a great concept, in order that Altura could keep the tabs out of the way, I found them too small to be particularly useful in removing the glove.
The final consideration was down to user error. Mesh gloves don’t provide the same protection as a fully backed glove, meaning that sunscreen must be applied beneath them on sunny days, be warned!
Other than my personal preference for a marginally different pad configuration on the palm of these mitts, their sturdiness and the classic appeal definitely means I’ll be using them for future racing.
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