Gearing Up For The Summer
Note: Thanks to Racer Gloves USA for providing the Pitlane Gloves for this review
I always carry extra gloves in case of changing weather during my ride. So when Racer Gloves USA asked us if we would like to try out some of their gloves, I asked for two pairs, the Pitlane for warmer weather and the Multitop 2 for all-around waterproof protection.
My province eased its pandemic restrictions by late spring, and I felt comfortable heading out for day rides. With the end of spring comes warmer temperatures, the perfect time to shakedown the Pitlane gloves.
About Racer Gloves USA
Racer Gloves USA is the exclusive US importer and distributor for the Austrian motorcycle apparel brand Racer Outdoor GmbH. Racer Austria has been creating premium street motorcycle apparel since the early 1990s and is well recognized throughout Europe. Racer Gloves USA’s mission is to bring you quality products that make your riding experience safer and more comfortable.
Pitlane Gloves Features
Several features stand out on the Pitlane gloves. The critical element for me is the comfort level provided by the soft leather palms, molded ventilation and mesh panels. Add to that the CE Level 1 knuckle protection, and you have an excellent pair of warm weather short-cuffed gloves.
- Leather palm
- Padded palm protector
- CE Level 1 Hard knuckle protector
- Ventilated molded finger intake and mesh panels
For a complete list of features, visit the Racer Gloves Pitlane product page.
Pitlane Gloves First Impressions
The combination of black and tan was an immediate winner for me from a styling perspective. The black knuckle protection blends in nicely. I am not one for flashy colors, so I was pleased to see the glove’s simple black appearance. The gloves have a quality look and feel and are constructed with a mix of materials. Like the Multitop 2 I tested earlier, comfort was the thing that stood out the most was when I put them on for the first time, and it was like someone taken the time to break them in before delivery. They were comfortable right out of the box.
For most all-day rides, the Pitlane gloves were relegated to storage to start the day. Then, as the temperatures increased throughout the day, I would switch to the Pitlane gloves. Usually, if the temperature warms up to the mid-20s Celsius, I feel more comfortable in warm weather gloves.
Pitlane Gloves Construction
The outer shell is primarily black or tan leather. The palm also has an additional layer of leather palm padding.
The perforated leather-covered knuckle protection dominates the back of the hand. There is also a mesh panel on the back of the hand that continues onto the thumb. The short gauntlet is neoprene with a velcro closure. The finger boxes have a leather top and bottom with stretch material on the sides for extra comfort.
All the protective padding and additional leather are double stitched.
- 100% Leather
- 100% Polyester
The Racer Pitlane features multiple layers of protection:
- Leather palms.
- Additional leather and padding run up the outside of the palm to the end of the pinky finger.
- Double closure to ensure the gloves stay on.
- CE Level 1 knuckle protection.
Although the gloves have a lot of protection built-in, many people feel that a hard palm slider is a must. Although the palm has additional padding, a hard skidpad would add better abrasion protection. That said, the knuckles have CE Level 1 Knuckle Protection (KP) rated armor. If you want that glove protection for spirited riding and track days, check out our review of the Racer USA High Racer Gloves as well as the High Speed gloves.
There is a CE-standard for motorcycle gloves, EN 13594:2015, with Level 1 and Level 2.
Motorcycle gloves with Level 1 performance provide a lower level of protection but offer greater flexibility than Level 2. In contrast, Level 2 gloves offer increased safety, but they may not be as flexible as a Level 1 glove due to their increased protective armor.
I like the subtle branding on the Pitlane gloves. Racer branding is on the back of the gauntlet and hand. Curiously, the three labels are all within a couple of centimetres of each other.
The Pitlane gloves are only available in black with tan leather palms.
Overall Build Quality
The Racer Gloves Pitlane gloves appear to be very well put together. During my review period, I have not encountered any problems with the build quality.
Pitlane Gloves Fit & Feel
The Racer Gloves Pitlane gloves fit true to their sizing chart. Depending on the manufacturer, I wear either a large or extra-large. Because of this, I always refer to the sizing charts. Using the directions in the Size Chart Guide, my hand measures about 9.5”. In this case, I ordered a size Large. The gloves fit perfectly.
The Pitlane comes in 6 sizes:
|Palm Measurement||8 ½”||8 ¾”||9 ½”||9 ¾”||10″||10 ½”|
|Finger Measurement||7″||7 ¼”||7 ½”||8″||8 ¼”||8 ½”|
No women’s sizes are available for this model.
Like the Multitop 2 gloves I tested previously, the Pitlane gloves were incredibly comfortable from the first time I put them on. The comfort is attributed to several things.
- Pre-curved fingers
- Accordion knuckles for better articulation
- Stretch material between the fingers for added comfort and ventilation
- Short neoprene (inside and outside) gauntlet
- Molded ventilation on the fingers
- Mesh panels
- Polyester liner for a very comfortable interior feel
The Pitlane uses a velcro wrist closure on the neoprene cuff to keep things snug and comfortable.
Care Instructions and Warning Label
So, the care label tells us that we can’t do much of anything. ( I need to look more closely at these tags on my clothing)
- Do not wash
- Do not bleach
- Do not tumble dry
- Do not iron
- Do not dry clean
Without many options, I would recommend spot cleaning with a damp cloth. The light-colored palm shows dirt, but I like the worn-in look.
Racer Glove offers a standard 1-year warranty that the gloves are free from defects in material and workmanship. Warranties vary across the industry, with 1-year being the minimum standard, while others offer two or more years.
For further information, please visit Racer Glove Customer Service.
Pitlane Gloves Road Testing
I received the gloves in early May, not expecting much use until late spring or early summer. However, with an extended period of above-normal temperatures, I used the Pitlane gloves sooner than anticipated.
Most of my use was between 20 degrees Celsius (68 degrees Fahrenheit) and 33 degrees Celsius (91 degrees Fahrenheit).
The Pitlane gloves are my go-to gloves in two scenarios. First, as a backup on longer rides that start cool and warm up significantly during the day. Second, for short rides on warm days. As the summer approaches, I will use them for all-day rides ( I guess that’s three).
The gloves worked great. I have used the gloves in various situations, around town, backroads and on secondary and major highways. They have continued to perform very well.
I often use my smartphone as a GPS for speed/speed limit and music. The Pitlane gloves do not indicate touchscreen compatibility as a feature in the product description, but I was able to make basic swipes and selections on my smartphone. I can barely type texts or emails without gloves, so I had no expectations of doing those tasks with gloves on and as such, did not attempt to do so.
Simply put, they work great for the intended purpose.
I see the Pitlane gloves being used for touring and adventure riding or dual-sport riding with some added protection.
The Racer Gloves Pitlane gloves offer outstanding styling, CE Level protection, and plenty of ventilation. But, as with the Racer Multitop 2, the biggest thing for me was comfort! The Pitlane gloves feel great right out of the box (or bag). As I have preached before, if my protective gear is comfortable, I am more likely to wear it!
- Solid construction offers longterm durability
- Material is comfortable to wear
- CE Level Protection
- Ventilation keeps hands cool while riding
- Lack of palm protection