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Since 1999, the #1 Motorcycling Magazine for Women and the Men Who Ride with Them









Review: Cool-Weather, Waterproof Motorcycle Riding Gloves

Don't let the brand name "Race" fool you!

By Genevieve Schmitt
9/24/2013

They may be called Racer Gloves, but don't be fooled into thinking the gloves this company makes are for racers only. Racer Gloves are for any street rider—cruiser, sportbike, or sport touring—with styles available for men and women. The Austria-based company has been making higher-end street motorcycle apparel, including riding gloves, since the early 1990s.

Cool Weather Motorcycle Gloves Textile
The Racer Warm Up women's gloves are simple textile gloves that work for cooler days and nights. The Racer name and logo are subtle, and the red-threaded lettering spells out "Softshell-Tech," the brand of fabric used to make the gloves.

Racer's line of gloves for men offers nearly every style, including shorties and gauntlets, in leather, textile, mesh, or some combination thereof. Some come with armor, some have just padding, and some have neither. The company recently started making women’s gloves, and that collection now includes five options: two sport-oriented gloves with extra padding and knuckle reinforcements, two for cooler-weather riding, and one leather/textile combo summer glove. I tested the women’s “Warm Up” glove, one of the two designed for cooler weather.

This is one of the most comfortable pairs of gloves I’ve worn in a long time. The soft fleece inside is smooth on my skin, and there are no seams that scratch, pull or bind in the wrong areas, which can often contribute to increasing hand fatigue. On the outside, the gloves are made of Softshell-brand textile fabric that allows for just the right amount of flexibility. They are not stiff at all, and they don’t bunch up when you grab the handgrips.

Cool Weather Motorcycle Gloves Racer Brand
This extra strip of fabric across the knuckle of the glove is for styling only—there is no armor or extra knuckle protection here.

If you’ve ever worn thick winter gloves while riding, you've probably noticed that they tend to cause some loss of sensation in terms of grip and finger control. These gloves, however, offer just the right amount of thickness, so they do not detract from your sensory interaction with the hand controls.

Another added bonus is that these gloves are lined with a Hipora-brand waterproof membrane. Water dances right off the fabric. I haven't been caught yet in any heavy rainstorms while wearing them, so I tested their waterproofing by dunking the gloves in a sink full of water. There was no leakage.

Cool Weather Motorcycle Gloves Wrist Closure
Thin leather reinforcement panels are sewn across the palm and placed right where your hands touch the handgrips. The large wrist closure uses a Velcro fastener, allowing you to adjust the fit to be looser or tighter.

Although the Warm Up gloves are designed for cooler weather, I've noticed the temperature at which my hands start to get chilly in my thin leather gloves is about 70 degrees. True, 70 degrees is not particularly "cool," but while riding at 75 mph, the draft is enough for me to need the extra thickness offered by these gloves. When the temperature warms up from there, the gloves are way too warm to wear, but they work just right for those cool morning and evening rides. Plus, they'll be perfect for the transitional autumn riding season.

It’s worth noting that these gloves do not have the knuckle armor or extra padding offered by more sport- or race-oriented styles. And that’s OK. Not everyone wants that. The Warm Up gloves are very comfortable, and the fact that they don’t tire out my hands like a glove that “pulls” on my fingers all day long is a big bonus.

Cool Weather Motorcycle Gloves Styling
The Racer Warm Up gloves feature classic, minimalist styling.

I normally wear a women’s size large in gloves, and I found Racer's Warm Up gloves to be true to size. I also received the company’s other winter gloves, the super-duty Gore-Tex Ninas, in a size large, but those were a knuckle too long in the fingers. That sizing issue is noted on Racer's website, so I would recommend using the company's sizing chart to ensure you get it right the first time.

Cool Weather Motorcycle Gloves Nina
Racer’s Nina women's gloves are made of thick leather with Gore-Tex for heavy wind and water protection. This style is best suited for true cold-weather riding days. They are a bit bulky, so be sure to order the right size to maximize fit. The Ninas cost $129.99.

Racer’s Warm Up gloves cost $69.99—a reasonable price for the quality—and can be ordered online from the US importer’s website at RacerGlovesUSA.com. Our friend Lee Block, a longtime motorcycle industry leader, is the owner of Racer Gloves USA and will take good care of you if you let him know you read about the gloves on Women Riders Now (WRN).

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