On test: gloves for riding in winter
Louis Garneau is new to me, but I have discovered that it is a brand that is worth reviewing. For a start, Louis Garneau is a Canadian road racing and track cyclist so you would imagine he knows a thing or two about bike wear. His eponymous company makes a wide range of cycle clothing, including the Shield winter gloves.
Louis Garneau is also famous for another reason. He is one of only a few people ever to casually put their arm around Queen Elizabeth II. Louis did this while having his photo taken â€“ and in doing so broke UK royal protocol. In Canada, there is a relaxed approach to these things, but in the UK Garneauâ€™s actions caused controversy.
After the event, he said: “I asked for a picture and she said ‘no problem’, so I just put my arm around her shoulder. In sport, we do that all the time. The Queen said, ‘I remember you â€“ you were a cyclist â€“ I hope business is good now’.”
On test: Louis Garneau Shield cycling gloves
Anyway, back to the gloves. The Louis Garneau Shield cycling gloves are aimed at winter cyclists. They boast 3mm of padding and claim to be waterproof and breathable. They also feature 3M reflective piping, Velcro cuff adjustors, two finger and thumb grip and thumbs made from fleecy material.
The gloves are a good fit and while they are padded they still offer great grip on the handlebars. I would recommend buying a size bigger than normal because they are a neat fit. You may want to add a liner glove underneath in very low temperatures so a bit of extra room will help.
I found I could easily change gear on my racer bike and pull the brakes while wearing these gloves. I even managed to clip up and unclip the waist strap on my rucksack without having to take the gloves off. The leather palm and finger grip offer extra confidence when cycling in the winter.
I took the gloves for several rides on chilly and rainy days. I was surprised that gloves that feel quite slim to wear actually kept my hands warm. But they did so. The rainy day wasnâ€™t torrential rain but persistent spitting rain and I watched as the raindrops rolled off the outside of the fabric.
The long-ish cuffs are a good feature, too, because they extend partially over the wrists, which means you will not feel the wind or rain on your skin in the gap so often left between gloves and jacket cuffs.
The Louis Garneau Shield cycling gloves have an RRP of Â£39.99, which is a bit of an investment but they do what they say on the label.