Kaori has been searching for the right track day gloves. Recently, she got hold of a set of FIVE RFX-1 ladies sports gloves. Here is her review... Pics: SD Pics, @Cazphotonsw, @kasakami
Ladies sports gloves are a niche within a niche, so finding the right ones can be tricky. Kaori recently started using the FIVE RFX-1 Ladies for her track days and has come away impressed with the fit, feel and comfort of the specialised ladies cut. Here is her FIVE RFX-1 review…
After a crash on my very first track day, I became acutely aware that high-quality gloves are a must on the circuit. Moto National Accessories sent me a pair of their FIVE RFX1 gloves to put to the test… Having small hands has always made it a struggle for me to find correct fitting gloves for the track. I decided to retire my old Alpinestars racing gloves since the smallest size was still far too big. Obviously, my daily riding Stella Vika gloves aren’t enough to pass track day tech in Australia due to not covering enough of my forearm. I tried, but the scrutineer said no, I had to get some alternatives for the day.
“The fact that SMSP offers FIVE gloves to those in need of proper racing gears gave me great confidence in the brand”…
That’s when I re-learned about FIVE gloves. I have to admit that I never really reconsidered buying a pair despite the brand being one of the big players in the glove sector. Funnily enough, this was due to my first riding kit consisting of FIVE gloves. They looked quite chunky on me and I was embarrassed when I saw a photo of myself looking like a LEGO character riding a motorbike on the Old Road…
After this, I listed my riding gear on Facebook and unfortunately FIVE was unticked from my list due to my pursuit of riding gear that didn’t just give plenty of safety, but reflected the image of a cool female rider that I always wanted to be! I didn’t realise they had other more stylish options.
I wouldn’t have thought about FIVE gloves until I borrowed a pair of them at Sydney Motorsport Park (SMSP). The leather was soft, and the gloves seemed to be more fitted to my hands. The fact that SMSP offers FIVE gloves to those in need of proper racing gears gave me great confidence in the brand. It is not economical to borrow used racing gloves for $20 per track day, so the decision was made to give the brand another go and get myself some “Premium racing gloves for fast (wannabe) ladies”…
FIVE RFX-1 Ladies Racing Gloves are made specifically for women. I can confirm that the shape and size are adapted to the feminine form as promised in the product description. They use two different leathers for the one pair – topside got cowhide skin for durability and palm side has goatskin for suppleness. Carbon slider shells protect your palms, and the pinky bridge protects your weakest finger.
Jeff told me that professional riders have quite a high chance of losing part of their pinky finger. In a lowside it’s the first thing that makes contact with the ground and often gets stuck under the bar end, Nick Ware knows all about this! I appreciate this feature as my Japanese colleagues will never go to a client meeting with me again if I show up at our Tokyo office without a pinky finger (in Japan, a missing pinky finger is the sign of the Yakuza).
Another feature that I noticed is the ventilated TPU metacarpal-knuckle protective shells. Motorcycle gloves normally come with knuckle protection, but I have never seen one that comes with stainless steel mesh under the plastic shell. That added security means you’ve not only get impact resistance, but a high level of abrasion protection. It reminds me of the handy kitchen strainer, that will last for decades and is highly durable.
I love the button that can put two gloves together while they are not in use. I am fully aware that the tag that comes with the button is to be removed after purchase, but I would love to keep this so that I can easily hang the gloves on a clothesline to dry after a long day at the track.
The gloves felt like a second skin from day one. I’ve heard a story from my fellow rider that she soaked her racing gloves into hot water to soften leather, which is unnecessary for FIVE RFX-1 Ladies Racing Gloves. They fit my hands perfectly and do not hinder my ability to feel the controls accurately. This means that the gloves do not have extra space for long, perfectly manicured fingernails.
I would like to stress that the gloves are made specifically for track riding. Velcro dual-construction closure system with gripper tab, one on the wrist and the other on the sleeve, will reduce the risk of the glove being torn off in the event of a fall. However, I would not choose racing gloves that cover half of my forearms for street riding. Outside of the track, I do not wear a full leather suit like those who ride hard on the Old Pacific Highway. It’s a stylistic preference – there is a reason why different types of riding gloves are available for you to choose.
FIVE gloves was founded by a French-Italian, Franck Fazio, who worked for long years with the most prestigious Italian motorcycle equipment makers, coming into contact with the world’s top riders. Franck noticed that there is no company that focuses solely on motorcycle gloves, so in 2004, he started a company that is 100 per cent dedicated to this one product.
Visit the FIVE Gloves Australia website here…
Franck knows that simplicity is key to success in business – FIVE is now recognized as a glove specialist and its gloves are available in 47 countries across five continents. There are no other gloves that can protect one set of 5-finger hands comfortably in a stylish manner.
FIVE RFX-1 HIGHLIGHTS
- Full-grain cowhide construction (topside) for durability/full-grain goatskin (palm) for suppleness
- Ventilated TPU metacarpal-knuckle protective shells
- Protective Carbon palm slider shell
- Palm reinforcement in Digital Pittards® leather
- Thenar muscle (palm) reinforcement with a Superfabric® patch
- Internal Kevlar® lining
- Outer stitching on the fingers
- Carbon protective shell on the forearm
- Stretch Kevlar comfort panel (topside)
- Dual closure system
- V-Five Signature element (the inside of the index and middle fingers on the left hand are in red)
Colours: Black / White, Red / Black Sizes: S, M, L, XL PRICE: $349.95 RRP
The Verdict | Gear Review: Kaori’s FIVE RFX-1 Ladies Sports Gloves