Rapha’s Souplesse Aero Women’s Jersey is wind-tunnel tested for aerodynamic advantages and combines a beautifully fitted and engineered race cut with a range of well thought-out and race-proven features. It may be pricey, but if you’re looking for performance it’s worth it.
Designed with input from the riders of the Canyon//SRAM pro cycling team, this is an aero version of the Souplesse jersey, which is part of Rapha’s race-focussed product line.
It’s constructed from a quality feeling Lycra that has a matte finish and combines different fabrics to maximise aerodynamic properties. This includes smooth fabrics on the front, dimpled fabric over the shoulders, and stripes on the back panel that are in fact a ‘directional nap’, which is a series of ridges designed to help channel airflow.
Lightweight and breathable fabrics help regulate temperature, while long sleeves with an aerodynamic texture over the shoulders and arms help with airflow. Immediate Media Co
The fit is close but very comfortable. I tested a size XL which corresponds to a UK16/US12. While the jersey might be short sleeved, the sleeves themselves reach down to just above the elbow, and the dimpled aerodynamic fabric sits on the backs of the arms to help with efficient airflow.
As a large busted woman, I sometimes find that jerseys with full-length zips can sit awkwardly across the chest, but the Souplesse Aero jersey sat flush, keeping a neat profile and with enough room to accommodate my bust without excessive stretching.
The main seams and hems are bonded with tape rather than stitched, so they sit flush against the skin for a smooth and aero silhouette.
The zip toggle on the valuables pocket is easy to grip, making it accessible while riding, and the pockets themselves are also taped along the vertical seams, which gives secure support when they’re fully loaded.
There are three main pockets at the rear that are reinforced to accommodate a full load of snacks and repair essentials without shifting or deforming. Immediate Media Co
One downside with the White, Green Grey version I tested was that it shows up water pretty clearly, which includes sweat and drips from your water bottle. But, for me, that’s a small issue for a jersey that’s otherwise an excellent performer.
It’s also survived several trips around the washing machine and still looks as good as new.
Rapha Souplesse Aero Women’s Jersey pricing, sizing and availability
The Souplesse Aero jersey is available now via Rapha’s website and at Rapha Clubhouses and shops.
It’s available in a wide range of sizes, from XXS to XL and is true to size, but because it is a race cut it will be snug.
Price: £140 / €165 / $190 / AU$245
Colours: Dark Navy / High Vis Pink, Black / White, Green Grey / Dark Navy