We’ve seen plenty of the latest Dainese kit through the doors here at Dirt over the last year and have been impressed with the thinking behind their latest range.

From the Armoform kneepads to the Atmo-Lite hardshell jacket, the fit and function has been up there with the very best. The Dainese Driftec gloves also won us over, and feature in the 2017 Dirt 100. From trail riding to DH racing this brand really shows its experience in designing and crafting specialist clothing and protection.

Dirt’s deputy editor and chief bike tester took a trip out to the DHI Master World Championships in Val di Sole last summer and after a solid six months training period had to pack the van for the trip to Europe. Along with a custom built Specialized Demo 8 race bike, Steve needed to give very careful consideration to the contents of his kit bag. Suitable clothing, armour and helmet choices were honed down to tried and tested favourites – this was no place to experiment with new ideas or prototypes. And so it was that this Dainese Rhyolite jacket made the grade and the packing list.

A big investment for sure, but the detailing and quality as well as the safety can’t be beaten’

Along with established favourites such as the Scott Grenade and Troy Lee Raid kneepads, the Rhyolite jacket (in the revised series 2 version) hit the spot as a result of fit, comfort and suitability for the task in hand. Dainese have plenty of experience in both the motorcycle and mountainbike world when it comes to safety kit and their claims of extensive research into movement of the human body shows through in the fit

First up, the shoulders and elbows are protected with tough Pro Armor material as used and proven on their Trail Skins kneepads. The chest and ribs are guarded with Crash Absorb soft memory foam with a pliable Flexagon panel giving protection (and uncompromised comfort) for the back. It’s all about the most suitable type of protection in each specific area of the body. This jacket gives full protection for all areas of the upper body and is certified to EN 1621.1 and EN1621.2 Level 2.

Comfort is increased with the attention to the shaping of the jacket. The abdominal area is left uncovered aiding movement and the sleeves are a zip-off design allowing the Rhyolite to be used as just a protection vest. With six sizes available you should be able to get a suitable fit – just make sure you’re at your race weight when you try for size…

With a pedigree in protection that’s second to none, Dainese have produced a really well executed protection jacket. A big investment for sure, but the detailing and quality (as well as the safety) can’t be beaten.

PRICE: £239.95

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Selected for Dirt 100 2017

View the full 100
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