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TEST – Polartec and MAAP: what quality with POWER DRY®

We went to Milan with Polartec to try out the new garments created together with MAAP: breathability, performance and quick drying are the key features.

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Polartec®, company of the Milliken brand and leader in the production of innovative and sustainable textile solutions, together with MAAP, another quality brand that combines the best of functional clothing by combining style and sustainability, offers some technical garments from the Alt_Road collection made with Polartec technology ® Power Dry® and Polartec® Alpha.

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It was also an opportunity to take a nice gravel ride in the areas surrounding Milan, starting in the Navigli area

HUNDRED CANESIO

Cento Canesio is one of the ambassadors of the MAAP brand: long-distance professional, travel enthusiast and with an artist background thanks to his passion for graffiti. Cento began his career in the late 80s, immersing himself more and more in the Italian and worldwide Graffiti scene. In recent times he combines this passion with the bike, designing 10 limited edition bikes and participating in extreme events such as the Transcontinental Race, the North Cape 4000 and the Italy Divide.

FOLLOW CENTO CANESIO ON INSTAGRAM


Returning to the materials, thanks to the use of these innovations, it is able to guarantee the best performance and high levels of breathability, as well as offer active insulation and quick drying which becomes essential during the warmer seasons.

POLARTEC® POWER DRY®: WHAT IS IT ABOUT?

Polartec® Power Dry® was designed to offer superior mechanical breathability. This two-part fabric technology is constructed with a hydrophilic interior to wick moisture away from the skin and transfer it to the outer layer.

The outer surface disperses and releases moisture to promote more efficient drying times. Continuous evaporation prevents saturation and regulates temperature in hot and cold conditions.

MAAP X POLARTEC® GARMENTS OVERVIEW

Alt_Road Ride Tee 3.0

MAAP_x_Polartec_Alt_Road_Ride_Tee_3.0

The Alt_Road Ride Tee 3.0 is the ideal combination of a technical tee capable of guaranteeing high performance and a more casual look and feel, suitable for any type of ride. Made with Polartec® Power Dry®, it's a bi-component knit that wicks moisture away from the skin for faster evaporation and a dry feeling on the skin. Highly breathable and odor resistant fabric helps keep you cool on the road ahead. It has a revamped fit, with new side panels and an articulated sleeve pitch in a two-piece design with increased sleeve length for improved on-bike function.

Recommended retail price: € 85,00


Alt_Road Ride Tee 2.0

MAAP_x_Polartec_Alt_Road_Ride_Tee_2.0

The Alt_Road Ride Tee 2.0 is the perfect combination of a technical tee that can guarantee high performance for miles with a more casual look and feel, suitable for wherever the ride takes place. Made with Polartec® Power Dry®, a two-component knit that wicks moisture away from the skin and transfers it to the outer fibers for faster evaporation, offering a dry sensation next to the skin. Lightweight, highly breathable and odor resistant, the Alt_Road Ride Tee 2.0 helps keep you fresh on the road. Features a side split hem for a comfortable fit while riding, a concealed zip side pocket and reflective branding for added visibility. With 50% recycled PET fiber, it proves to be an ally of the environment.

Recommended retail price: € 85,00


Alt_Road Cargo Bib

The Alt_Road Cargo Bib Shorts are designed for your next off road adventure. A unique combination of materials, including 4-way stretch compression fabrics and our proprietary 3D thermoformed chamois, provide all-day comfort, while abrasion-resistant leg panels offer durability for when, you know, it happens. And space is taken care of, whatever you choose to wear over it, with a zipped leg pocket for valuables, hidden pocket for your phone and back pockets for gels and bars. Antimicrobial, odor resistant, and lightweight, they're great on gravel, dirt, road, whatever.

Recommended retail price: € 290,00


Alt_Road Thermal Vest

MAAP x Polartec Alt_Road Thermal Vest

Alt _Road Thermal Vest is a zipped gilet that offers superior thermal regulation thanks to a light windproof outer layer combined with the lining Polartec® Alpha® (explained below). This soft, plush fiber offers active insulation and a soft-to-the-touch feel for superior comfort. Perforated side panels and a stretch back panel deliver breathability where it's needed most. Stretch ripstop back pockets ensure durability and storage, while the zippered back pocket allows for convenient storage of valuables. Featuring reflective branding and a reflective back patch for low-light visibility, plus a water-repellent lining for light moisture, the Alt_Road Thermal Vest is the perfect companion on your epic adventures.

Recommended retail price: € 185,00

Polartec® Alpha technology

It was designed for US Special Forces who required superior insulation to cope with extreme temperature changes and start-stop conditions typical of combat.
Alpha® active insulation is designed to maintain body thermoregulation by continuously releasing excess sweat, allowing for greater breathability during activity and lasting comfort. The fabric is inherently hydrophobic and dries incredibly quickly.


FIELD TEST

We went to Milan to get to know who is behind the Polartec world and where this collaboration with Maap comes from. Polartec has created a technology which, in this case, has been fully embraced by Maap, which has integrated it into many of its clothing items. Maap produces top quality garments and they were born to last over time. Having a mechanical technology, i.e. with the use of different filaments where the humidity quickly moves away from the body and is transferred to the external surface, there is no rapid deterioration as occurs with other sports garments.

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Often the care of clothing in sport is neglected for economic reasons: "who makes me spend €200 on shorts?". However, when you wear such garments you can immediately notice the positive aspects in terms of comfort and durability: if after several dozen turns the garment maintains its original qualities, it turns into savings. And the eye too, given the excellent wearability on an aesthetic level, is part of him.

The fit of the shirt is excellent: it fits very well close to the shoulders and chest while remaining slightly relaxed at the bottom. The material has good elasticity in movement and no creases of any kind are created. Even the trousers are no less: very close-fitting but, given the high elasticity of the material, they do not lead to tension / discomfort.

In the jersey we find reflective areas, such as the external brand, side hems, for greater comfort during pedaling as well as heat-sealed on the sleeves. Fabrics are Bluesign approved.

WHAT IS BLUESIGN?

Thanks to the global vision of this industrial standard, not only the safety of the final consumer has been taken into account, but also other aspects such as occupational well-being, water and atmospheric emissions. Apart from these important aspects, the principle of resource conservation plays a vital role in the bluesign certificate. The independent Bluesign certificate guarantees that the entire production chain contains only products made through processes that are harmless to people and the environment.

The Alt_road Ride Tee line is designed for the world of commuters and gravel, even if nothing prevents you from using it on the road. Because it was designed for these worlds: because it has a more casual, slightly more relaxed line that is well suited to this kind of activity. When used off the bike, it has a classic t-shirt look. Because of this design, if you go downhill with an aggressive position (for example hands down on the handlebars) it climbs a little higher but it's not a problem if you use classic bib shorts underneath.

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The complete Gravel Ride group

The Tee 3.0 shirt, as previously mentioned, uses Polartec's Power Dry, designed to be worn next to the skin without the use of underwear. I usually wear underwear underneath but I was pleasantly surprised with this garment: soft on the skin and super breathable.

The chamois of the pants is proprietary triple layer 3D thermoformed: composed of various densities with a very full-bodied main section and numerous cut-out sections to relieve pressure. All seams are flat and imperceptible to the touch. There are 2 pockets: one on the right leg thigh, which can easily hold a folded map/gel or even cell phone, while the left leg pocket is similar in size but uses a zip fastening.

On all models, different colors are available (see Official site for more information).

VERDICT

High quality, comfortable fit and excellent wicking performance (its strong point). It's not a cheap garment but you will have nothing to say: a highly versatile and durable jersey. In the case of shorts, €290 is a very high obstacle. But if you are among those people who think it might be worth the expense, you will certainly not be disappointed afterwards: comfortable and with very high standards of durability.



Written by

[email protected] I am a fan of everything that has 2 wheels: at a young age I practiced road and track cycling (Italian Allievi champion). At the age of 18 I passed into the cross country competing at national/international level as an Under23. Past Elite, I made the choice to take things more lightly from a training point of view, and my love for gravity disciplines was born, training me as an FCI MTB instructor and guide. Now I have made passion my profession by managing 2 MTB centers on the island of Elba (Bike Center Elba and Elba MTB), creating the FANTAmtb and telling in an ironic but professional way everything that revolves around MTB thanks to 365mountainbike and 365TV (YouTube'PULITI dentro BIKER fuori').

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