Conceived in Yorkshire in 2013, British brand Spokesman offers a range of technical and great looking kit for both men and women. Like many boutique cycling brands, Spokesman began as a grass-roots alternative to the big players in the industry and can now be seen in independent retailers, as well as some of the biggest chain stores in the UK. We take a look at the Attack jersey and the Team bibshorts.
Focusing on performance, Spokesman’s range uses the latest technical fabrics from the same Italian factories that bigger brands, such as Castelli and Santini, use. This results in originally designed kit, which can live up to the performance expectations you get with more established brands.
Spokesman Attack jersey
Available in both navy and red, the Attack jersey pays homage to the longest ever solo attack, made by Albert Bourlon in 1947. The date can be seen on the rear cargo pockets, as well as an illustration commemorating the feat on the inside of the jersey. Not only a tribute aesthetically, the jersey is lightweight, offers a tailored fit and is both moisture wicking and breathable, providing a great fitting and high performing garment for long and fast rides.
The raw edge finish to the sleeves offers perfect positioning on the arm and a comfortable fit. However, the jersey is manufactured by printing colour onto white coloured material, which combined with the raw cut on the sleeves and the hemming along the zip, results in a disappointing finish and you may expect more from a £90 jersey.
The low cut collar is made with the same material as the sleeves, albeit double thickness and hemmed. The collar looks clean and provides a comfortable and close fit.
Mesh side panels and a wicking treatment throughout the jersey will keep you cool in hotter temperatures and the jersey offers sun protection of SPF 50+.
A small zipped pocket on the rear is big enough for a standard-sized smartphone, credit card and a set of keys, while the two large cargo pockets offer more than enough room for longer rides. We found the drawback of having only two pockets is that they are much larger than usual, which over rougher roads had us checking frequently that no contents had bounced out.
Spokesman Team bibshorts
Spokesman’s Team bibshorts are available in black with either orange or green trim. Although the design looks sharp, clean and complements the jersey well, we can’t help but think they have been influenced by another British brand worn by a certain Team Sky. The large band around the right leg is reflective and the orange trim further increases visibility in dark or poor conditions.
The panelling and construction of the shorts cannot be faulted, offering a comfortable fit even after several hours in the saddle. Flat lock stitching prevents any unwanted rubbing and the Cytech Deluxe chamois is superb.
The overall fit of the shorts, combined with support from the highly breathable, mesh-material back is just as well, as the straps over the shoulder and on the front of the shorts offer almost no support and felt loose. It is surprising that Spokesman opted for these straps as opposed to continuing with the mesh material seen on the back, and we feel this lets the shorts down slightly.
Spokesman’s Attack jersey offers a great design with high performing, technical fabrics and some cool added features. However, there is certainly room for refinement and with a £90 jersey we would hope for some aspects of the finish to be higher quality.
The bibshorts look good, albeit in an unoriginal design. The construction of the shorts’ panelling has been thought through, providing an anatomic fit combined with the quality and performance you would expect from a garment at this price point.
Overall, Spokesman is certainly a brand worth paying attention to, we feel the balance between technical performance and aesthetics is impressive and whilst there is room for improvement, you won’t be disappointed.