The light rests on the right-hand glove and is oriented so that it faces oncoming traffic if you’re running on the proper (left-hand) side of the road. It’s not nearly enough light to see by, but just enough to catch a wandering eye from approaching drivers. The whole light can be removed from the glove, and it recharges via a USB port on your computer. Another nifty innovation on these gloves is a tiny magnet embedded on each cuff, so the gloves stick together in your drawer more easily – but truthfully, their bright orange color would make them pretty easy to pair up in the event that they got separated.
The only drawback I’ve experienced with these also has to do with wiping: aside from the thumb, the entire surface of the glove is a polyester material that doesn’t absorb moisture at all, so it feels a little too slick when you run your fingers across your face. Temperature-wise, I’ve worn the ViziPro comfortably into the mid 30s, and they’re fairly comfortable for a couple hours of intense activity. They typically retail for $40 from the company website (linked above).
The coldest-weather glove of this review is another Manzella product, with another cool design innovation. The Hatchback glove is convertible, allowing use as a water-resistant mitten or a microfleece stretch fabric glove. In colder temperatures, you keep the fingers inside the windproof finger hood, and if the morning warms up or if you need to get in and out of a zipper pocket, you peel back the hood to let your fingers function independently. There’s a stowaway pocket on the backside of the hand for tucking the hood when it’s not in use.
Manzella Hatchback, with R hood tucked
The hood comes in either a high-visibility yellow color or basic black, and the remainder of the glove has small reflective accents for enhanced visibility. A NanoSphere protective coating on the hood provides a bit of water resistance, but it’s not a true rain glove, since the portion that’s not covered by the hood will get soaked pretty quickly if you’re in a heavy downpour. The palms and fingertips of this glove score pretty high on the “grip vs wipeability” scale, with just the right amount of rubberized material in key locations, and soft surfaces everywhere else.
Just-right amount of grip
This was my favorite glove of the three in this review, mainly for its versatility in a wider range of temperatures. As a fleece glove with the hood tucked in, it’s comfortable in the low 40s, and with the hood in place I’ve been able to tolerate sub-freezing runs. (And this is only the “warmer” category of Manzella’s lineup; they have warmest models that look ideal for true hardcore conditions). The Hatchback retails for $30 from the company website (also linked above).
And now for the giveaway! One winner will receive two pairs of gloves: the Saucony ViziPro, and the Manzella gloves of your choice based on availability. I’ll put you in contact with reps from each company, and they’ll assist you with sizing and give you instructions for how to claim your prizes. We’ll make this contest easy: one comment, one entry, with the winner announced on Thursday night, December 9th. Enter by 5PM PST on the 9th to be eligible.
Thanks very much to Manzella and Saucony, and good luck to everyone!
*Sprint and Hatchback gloves provided by Manzella
**ViziPro gloves provided by Saucony.
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