Winter time really tests out your gloves – you need warmth, waterproofing, comfort and protection, hopefully without too much bulk.
Five Gloves produces a huge range of gloves, but it’s probably best known for its racing gloves, which have an incredible range of features to provide feel at the controls with protection in the event of a crash.
Five has taken that philosophy to winter streets with the GT2 WP ‘Grand Touring’ glove – its designed to still offer heaps of protection and feel, but also warmth and waterproofing.
When the GT2 WPs arrived in the Cycle Torque office I tried one on, then took the pair and hid them away from the likes of Pickett, who has a habit of stealing winter gloves… although I admit I didn’t feel bad when he came back from KTM Adventure launch telling me he had to borrow some motocross gloves to squeeze under the adventure gloves he’d taken on the trip, it was so cold…
In contrast, I’ve just come back from the launch of the Royal Enfield Himalayan where the GT2 WP gloves performed admirably. Not only did the Thinsulate lining help keep the cold out, the double strap closure around the wrist means you can tuck the gloves under your jacket, or over. Most winter gauntlets want to go over your jacket sleeve, which is a hassle on some bulky winter jackets.
I was a little surprised when I started researching this article Five actually markets these gloves as touring rather than winter – there’s a range of Five winter gloves, which I presume might actually be even warmer than the GT2 WPs. If you’re hard-core or live in a really cold climate you might need something even warmer than the GT2 WPs, but I think for the vast majority of Australian riders these gloves will be warm enough for any cool-weather riding.
The other advantage is the reduced bulk compared to full-on winter gloves, which often compromise feel at the controls for warmth.
Personally my preference is for a touring glove like the GT2 WPs with heated grips and a set of Andy Straz RainOff overgloves – while the GT2 WPs are waterproof, a long, soaking ride will leave your hands cold, if not wet. a set of RainOff overgloves will break the wind and let the water bead-up and run off.
When we hit the freeway to get out of Melbourne riding the Himalayans it was just five degrees, and we didn’t have Barkbusters or heated handgrips, but my hands didn’t feel cold.
The GT2s feature a Cordura topside with soft leather palm and armour protecting the areas prone to damage in a crash.
The GT2s even feature conductive material in the fingertips of the forefinger and thumb, so you can operate a smartphone while wearing them.
Staying warm and comfortable really helps you stay focussed on riding, so a good pair of gloves like the Five Gloves GT2s should be considered an investment in safety.
– Nigel Paterson
Five GT2 WP Gloves
Available from: bike shops everywhere