inov-8 race elite 150

No doubt you are very familiar with inov-8's range of trail running shoes. In my opinion, as an obstacle racer, there really isn't anything better to wear on your feet. However, something that we're slightly less familiar with are waterproof jackets. We tend to spend half of our time submerged in water at obstacle races, so there's little point wearing something designed to keep the rain at bay! However, that's not to say that waterproof jackets shouldn't be on our radar, particularly for those of us looking to take part in longer trail runs and challenges.

jacket sackFor the likes of Man Vs Mountain, Fan Dance and many other trail runs like them, a decent waterproof jacket is on the mandatory kit list. That can be a little frustrating when you rock up to a start line bathed in beautiful sunlight, which is why it's great to get something that's light and compact that you can sling into the smallest possible backpack.

Investing in a decent running waterproof doesn't need to be just for a few isolated events though. They can, of course, make winter training a little more cosy.

Before I go into the stuff that's likely to make you fall in love with this jacket from the minute you put it on, I'll get the stinger out of the way... it's likely to cost you in the region of £150. I know, I hear what you're saying but, in the scheme of things, that's not actually a bad price for a really good jacket.

The stuff that rocks about this jacket...

Thumb loopI don't expect you to get excited about a waterproof jacket... well, at least not until you've been inside a really good jacket after a lifetime of fairly average ones. One of the best thing about this one though, unsurprisingly, is that it works really well when you're actually running:

  • It's so light it barely feels like you're wearing a jacket.
  • You can wear the hood up without it restricting your head movements (nor the movements of the rest of your body, for that matter).
  • It has a peak with a wire filling that adjusts easily to a shape that suits you .
  • It's slimline, so won't make you feel like a kite when the wind picks up.
  • It's got thumb loops to keep your sleeves locked in place (if you so desire).
  • It's got easy-tug elastic adjustments for the hem and hood.

The techy stuff in English...

beads of waterAs we've become accustomed to with inov-8, the digit in the product name is the weight of the average size in grams, so this jacket weighs in at a measly 150g - seriously, you'll barely notice it.

When I'm testing something waterproof I like to pore water onto it and see whether beads form on the surface without it soaking in. I then give it a bit of a rub to see what affect that has. It's simple and perhaps no test for a jacket of this calibre, so it's useful to get a little more techy...

There are two important numbers relating to waterproof fabrics, one measures the waterproofability [technical term] and one measures breathability. As a rule of thumb, once each of those numbers goes over 10,000, it can be considered "fairly good" and once they go over 20,000 they can be considered excellent. This jacket has a rating of 20,000 HH and 20,000 B-1, which basically means it will keep you really dry without you getting clammy and sweaty on the inside.

zipOf course, there's no point having a really waterproof fabric if you're going to stitch a needle through it a bunch of times when you're turning it into a jacket. That's why, like other top level jackets, this Stormshell comes with "taped" seems and fancy waterproof zips to keep the wetness and wind out.

So, there you have it. A decent waterproof jacket will be a great investment for many of us who are looking to get serious about trail running and events that are on the boundary of obstacle racing. And, as you'd expect from inov-8, their Race Elite Stormshell ticks all of the boxes.

Find out more on inov-8's product page here.

Inov-8 Stormshels, as well as some more of their clothing options, are now available on ObstacleKit.co.uk (don't forget your Mudstacle discount)

For more news , tips and info about obstacle course races and mud runs. Follow Mudstacle on: Twitter, Facebook and Youtube.

3 COMMENTS

  1. Having tried one on recently it felt awesome but I did feel that the fit really let it down so seemed one to try for size before buying. Having a wardrobe full of Inov8 shoes I had been within a click of ordering a number of their items in the past but was thankful that I could try some kit on for myself at the Outside shop in Hathersage recently.

    The Small felt as though it was designed for someone with a waist but a very narrow back which I felt would be detrimental to anyone who lifts weights. I didn’t feel it was slimline in relation to my 26-28 inch waist with a huge amount of excess fabric.

    I felt the fit of the OMM Kamleika jacket which seems a competitively matched was more suitable for someone with an athletic physique in the back and shoulders.

  2. I have used the 150 stormshell for over 12 months now, including the Lakes 10 Peaks.
    It is certainly light, packable and wind and rainproof up to really vindictive.
    However, the sizing is very tight. I have some problems putting it on when mid hike / run, almost needing a third hand.
    After regular use, the length seems to be shorter than when I first used it.
    This is more noticeable when wearing a sac or 20l rucsac, when my bum seems to get cold and wet.
    Otherwise, its either that – or my Arcteryx – but the latter is nowhere near as packable or light – but it does cover my bum!

  3. Pete, are you still reading this? 🙂

    Can you help me with the sizing of tzhis jacket? How tall are you, what are your chest and waist measurements, and what size of jacket did you choose?

    Thanks 🙂

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