Goodbye Velcro, see ya later category-specific clothing, and hello to a new glove storage option! Italy’s Dainese was back at Crankworx Whistler this year, showing off some of the clever innovations found in their 2020 product line.
While their protective pieces still use it, Dainese has ditched Velcro from their clothing, replacing it with a silicone hook-and loop style closure. Unlike Velcro, their new closure won’t wear on the garments or grab onto your delicate gear in the washing machine. And, as long-travel bikes encourage riders to play more freely with different terrain, riders aren’t as pigeonholed as they once were, so much of Dainese’s clothing is now simply designed for mountain biking in any capacity.
Dainese has also decided to offer a line of women’s HG clothing, which shares the same key pieces and technologies as the men’s line but with female-specific cuts. Now let’s take a look at some of the new pieces…
Dainese 2020- Trail Skins Pro knee pads:
The 2020 Trail Skins Pro knee pads are the third generation of Dainese’s Trail Skin knees, and were developed with input from the Canyon Team EWS riders. Their new Pro Shape 2.0 padding has been reshaped and redesigned to be lighter, more flexible and even more open than the previous Trail Skin 2’s Pro Armour. The new Pro Shape 2.0 protector is more functional in a crash too – As the pad flattens out, the curved ribs contact each other and create a firmer surface to absorb impacts.
Aside from the updated knee protection, Dainese also added a plastic shell to the smaller, outer pad to make it slide better in high speed crashes. The Velcro closures are now wider, and the sock is cut so it won’t leave a gap where the Velcro tab can rub against your skin (an issue some riders found in the previous version). The sock is also longer on the top and bottom, now has a cut-out behind the knee, and has an added calf strap to improve stability. The Trail Skin Pro knees sell for $94.99.
There is also an Elbow version of the Trail Skins Pro, which share all the same design features as the knees. They retail at $84.99.
Rival Pro Vest:
The Rival Pro vest takes a moto-inspired approach to protection and water integration with a rigid 700ml HumpBack ‘bladder’ built into its protective spine pad. The vest can be worn with the water and spine pad, with the spine pad alone, or with neither if you want to ride with a full backpack. Dainese made sure to place the HumpBack water container high enough on the back so riders can fit a hip pack underneath.
The Rival also includes removable shoulder pads (with the same Pro Shape 2.0 protection as the Trail Skin Pro pads), plus padding on the collarbone and chest. The vest is designed to be worn under a jersey, and despite the HumpBack’s name, I saw it in action and it won’t make you look like Quasimodo! The Rival Pro vest sells for $249.99.
Rival Pro short:
The Rival Pro shorts are an ideal piece for downhill or park riders, as they offer crash protection but do not have a chamois. Two large pads cover the thighs to help prevent the dreaded Charlie horse, and two smaller pads protect the upper rear sections of the pelvis. Silicone grippers in the waist and leg hems help them stay in position. MSRP is $69.99.
When the skies open up, the 2.5 layer Harashimaya jacket comes to the rescue. This jacket is fully waterproof with taped seams, and a hood that will fit over a helmet. The shell material is breathable, but the jacket also includes vent holes and zips in the armpits.
There are cinches to tighten down the waist hem, silicone on the hem to keep the jacket in place, and two chest pockets for storage. Dainese’s new silicone fasteners are found on the cuffs. The Harashimaya jacket costs $249.99.
When temperatures drop, the Rata is an insulating midlayer that pairs well with the Harashimaya jacket. Made from two different fabrics, the Rata has breathable panels on the undersides of the arms, back and shoulders, and a warmer, more durable material everywhere else. Dainese also made sure the shoulders were seamless so pack straps won’t cause discomfort. The Rata has one zippered rear pocket for stashing small items. The Rata’s price is $174.99.
HG Gryfino shorts:
The 2020 HG Gryfino shorts utilize Dainese’s new silicone closure at the waist, in combination with two buttons and a zipper fly. The legs are now longer than before to prevent the ‘pad gap’ everyone hates, and the rear hem is raised to ensure full back coverage.
One nifty feature Dainese added was the Hookfit system, which allows you to clip Dainese’s new gloves to the right hip on the shorts. There are two small tabs with open slots sewn onto the shorts, and smaller tabs on the gloves clip into them. Instead of shoving them into a pocket or pulling off your pack to stow them, you can now clip those gloves to your hip and climb bare-knuckled on hot days. Retail price is $124.99.
The Caddo glove is a lightweight, breathable glove that features the Hookfit system and touchscreen-ready fingertips. A departure from Dainese’s armoured gloves, even the silicone print on the Caddo’s palms was placed only where necessary to keep them as svelte as possible. The Caddo’s include an abrasion-resistant panel on the outer palm, a soft goggle-wipe panel on the thumb, and simply slip on without a wrist closure. The gloves sell for $34.99.
This is just a small selection from Dainese’s 2020 collection, so keep an eye on their website for all the details on the new men’s and women’s pieces.