|Alpinestars GP Tech Gloves
by Martin Hackworth
Photos: Alfonse Palamia, Alpinestars
GP Tech Gloves ain't exactly cheap - but then again neither
is reconstructive surgery. If you are looking for top-level protection
in a glove paired with function and excellent tactility
the Alpinestars GP Tech Glove should certainly be on your purchasing
The GP Tech features a kangaroo leather palm that is reinforced with Pittards DigitalTM textured leather (for grip) and a Kevlar® panel. There are Polyurethane (PU) knuckle and finger sliders (that Alpinestars claims are superior to carbon fiber for impact and abrasion resistance). A patented 3rd and 4th finger bridge keeps your vulnerable outer digits bundled together to protect against "finger roll" and "potential seam bursting" when their number comes up. The fingers on the GP Tech's feature ventilated sidewalls with external sewn seams for comfort. The top of the GP Tech is reinforced with knit Kevlar® and features Pittards Armor-Tan leather at critical areas. There is a large, contoured, wrap-around PU injected wrist panel that provides great protection for your wrist and lower forearm and features ram air to keep things cool underneath.
Perhaps the most remarkable feature of the GP Tech is the fit. You'd expect a pair of gloves that cost north of $200 to, well, fit like a glove - but the GP Tech's are extraordinary in this regard. GP Tech's are pre-curved for an anatomical and comfortable fit, as you'd expect, but the leather in the fingers is so supple that you can remove your ATM card from your wallet while wearing them. That is pretty cool. My hands are very large with long slender fingers and the XL's fit perfectly. The fingers in all glove sizes in the GP Tech line tend to be long and skinny and those with short fingers and thick hands might not find the fit to be quite as trick.
worn my GP Tech's for more than a year now in all types of conditions
and I am very happy with
them. The break in period was brief and they have
ever since. Except for the fact that they have softened up and
with each use my GP Tech's still feel and look new. I really appreciate
ability to feel my throttle and controls through the fingers and palm
without the sensation of having a towel wrapped around them.
Tech's are as tactile as a set of MX gloves but with
far more protection. Nirvana!
Though I have not crash tested this pair of gloves I can personally attest to the importance of top notch gloves in the event that you really need them. And since you are at least as likely to suffer catastrophe on the street than the track I'd recommend that you not skimp on gloves (or any protective gear) just because you are not a racer.
If you want a set of no compromise gloves that are both protective and comfortable, and can pay the tab, you will not be disappointed in Alpinestars GP Tech gloves (with the caveat that you have the right type of hand for a good fit).