GCC rider and general superstar Griff Knight put together a piece on his experiences testing and developing the gear that you lovely folks can buy today.

We’ve been prototyping and testing apparel with multi-discipline race team Gravier Cycle Collective (GCC) for 18 months now. The talented men and women of GCC have put our gear through the wringer across road races, crits, CX, XC MTB, and even bikepacking. Always in the pursuit of better gear.

Big thanks to Griff for sharing all the rad things he’s done in Spin Cycle Clothing.

I’ve used a prototype Spin Cycle Clothing jersey since November 2017 and I continue to use it to this day. The white feathers kit saw over 3000 km of dusty, hot and dry mountain biking through the Aussie summer of 2017. In that 3000 km, I raced two National XC rounds, over 10 club XC and CX races, trained in Victoria’s beautiful alpine trails for a week and toured 1000km in 7 days up the Mawson trail, in addition to daily trail and gravel riding in the absence of a road bike.

Funnily enough, I initially complained to my team manager when they designed a white jersey for off-roading. I said ‘Are you crazy, this thing is going to be brown after the first ride!’. I guess I was wrong, because here I am in 2019 with my beautiful white jersey still going strong.

Testing cycling clothing for Spin Cycle Clothing
GCC formation flying in A grade crits

Off road jerseys typically require different technology to retain comfort due to the lack of ventilation seen at lower speeds. A lot of other jerseys leave me swimming during mountain bike rides, simply because the moisture does not wick away, and their lighter fabrics leave me at risk of being burned. Without knowing the inclusion and effects of coldblack fabrics prior to testing of the jersey, I noticed how much less wet my back and chest would get throughout slower speed rides. I also noted that I didn’t need to open my jersey to stay cool, which was great in races where I never had time to get it open anyway.

Having in-built cooling by utilising a smarter fabric eliminated my fears of overheating, even when the tempo or the temperature hit a maximum. I could focus on my hydration and trust that my body temperature would stay constant during a race or hard training session which is a huge mental win. A bonus was the sun protecting properties of coldblack; just extra peace of mind when burning trails in some pretty harsh environments. From thereon, I’ve been riding ColdBlack thanks to the Core 1 prototypes I used in 2018 and can say that I will never go back.

testing and developing clothing for cross discipline riding
Griff on his way to victory at the U23 South Australian XC championships

The new Core 1 is strikingly comfortable, trimmed enough for race day yet has room to stretch out on longer rides. I am impressed with the versatility of the fit, it is suitable for crit and road races but also comfortable enough to hang out for hours on and off bike. Core 1 has coldblack fabrics and from hot to cold, fast to slow, steep to flat, I have really enjoyed how consistent my temperature stays even in quite a dark coloured kit. I am super grateful for Spin Cycle Clothing’s input to Gravier Cycle Collective and giving us the opportunity to thrash their kits, it is a self defining experience to feel fully comfortable in your kit to the point that you can focus intensely on just riding.

Head on over to the Core 1 section of our website where you can buy the same gear Griff has been helping develop.

Author James Raison

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