In all honesty, gloves are probably my least favorite part of the PRO kit. In fact, for the longest time I wore no gloves whatsoever. Not sure if it was due to not wanting a glove tan line, or that most gloves were just sinfully ugly, but I couldn’t bring myself to wear them. Somewhere along the line I started wearing them, and now I’m hooked. For longer distances the padding is essential. And when your hands go out during the inevitable crash, your gloves act as helmets for your hands. Here are the two offerings from Gore Bike Wear I’ve been wearing since last season.
Gore Power Glove
The black/white Power glove provides a minimal feel and look that compliments their Power lineup as well as anything else you pair them with. Gore doesn’t bedazzle them with unnecessary “tech” adornments, preferring to get to the task at hand. The lycra/mesh backing provides all the necessary cooling on hot-n-humid sumer days. A soft terry fabric covers the thumb for those moments when you clear your nose all over your cheeks. It’s also nice for wiping sweat out of your eyes, but I seem to blow nasal spooge on myself more than I’d care to admit. After washing the gloves of my salt/snot crust numerous times, the black started to fade. Although that could be more from my sweat being akin to Alien™ blood.
The palm construction is taken care of by a lorica(?) pleather that’s both soft and strong. Small gel inserts line the palm and base of the fingers. Maybe I’m becoming soft and old, but I felt like I needed more padding on the lower palm. Additionally, the gel present has been rendered useless as it’s flattened out from use. It should be noted that Gore’s top of the line Xenon glove has more padding in the area of concern. A small velcro strap handles the closure duties. Rather than the typical back of the wrist location, they’ve put it towards the thumb side of each hand.
Only real complaint was the bit of stitching along the bottom seam of the glove that came undone almost immediately. But it never got worse over the next 1/2 year. So not much of a complaint.
Gore Retro Tech Glove
The Retro Tech gloves fit comfortably in the neo old-school epic niche pervasive in cycling right now. While not as refined as the Rapha mitts, they more than hold their own in comparison when factoring in price. Setting the pace for the retro style is the circular vented leather back, a sartorial nod to heady days of yore. Unlike the Rapha gloves, Gore adds some terry fabric on the back of the index finger and thumb, to keep your grill clean. The palm uses a similar microfibre pleather as the Power, but adds some stitching to further the old school look. A u-shaped pad protects your ulnar area of your palm.
For the Retro Tech, Gore places the velcro closure in the traditional placement on the wrist. They’ve embossed their logo on leather giving it a classy touch.
While the style definitely adds the style panache, it limits, in my opinion, its usage with modern kits. Another element to consider is the leather doesn’t breathe nearly as well as the lycra mesh, so they get a little hotter than you might expect. Yet for those looking for this to complete their retro-PRO kit, you can’t get much better.
Final thoughts and rating
I was impressed with both the quality and the aesthetics of the Gore gloves. Being a fan of minimal design these proved perfect accouterment to the well dressed PRO. I might’ve wanted to see a bit more padding on the Power glove, but others may find it a perfect amount. Stitching on the Power glove was slightly worrying, but not detrimental as it never got worse. As always, try these on before purchasing to make sure of the proper fit.
PRO FACTORS: Minimal design, high-quality feel and look
OPPORTUNITIES: Personal preference for more padding on the Power, quality control on stitching
RATING: 90% – The Gore Bike Wear Power & Retro Tech gloves deliver the PRO
ADDITIONAL IMAGE SOURCES: Gore Bike Wear