Is it all about Speed?
Or, why a sleeved triathlon suit over a standard tri suit or tri top and bottom combination?
Variations of these questions are common.
The Fusion triathlon Speed Suit excels in the heat and has built a reputation for this. Sun protection, aerodynamics and helping you stay cool. Fabric technology has developed so significantly over recent times such that there is no longer a heat penalty for covering up and protecting yourself from the sun, plus of course the added benefit of also being faster… We like Jordan Rapp's summary “skin is slow”.
To look at how and why, we need to first look at the evolution of the Speed Suit.
Going back a few years Fusion took up the challenge of coming up with a design solution to help Northern European athletes heading Kona. For these athletes, coming from cooler parts of the world, the Kona sun and heat represents a significant challenge.
We've all seen post race images such as the ones below, admittedly these are some of the "better" ones! But the shoulders and shoulder blades are particularly susceptible. This is obviously painful post race, not to mention the long term risks, skin cancer, etc, but also from a performance perspective the body will naturally be responding to the exposure and burn during the race, which can't be a positive contributor to performance.
So Fusion set about designing a garment with 3 clear design criteria:
The solution was the development of the ICE Fabric and initially the Speed Top. This, and the ICE Top, have been used by athletes in Kona and other warm races around the world for a number years now. The next evolution to this has been the Speed Suit, bringing together the performance of the Speed Top, and Fusion’s most popular product the Tri PWR Band Shorts, into a single high performance suit. Also by designing a suit which is built to race in Kona it makes it ideal for Australian, Asian and other sunny / warm climate race destinations.
Top tip, is to wet the ice fabric with water when racing in warm conditions i.e. ride and run aid stations. The cooling effect, taking advantage of the body’s natural cooling mechanism the evaporative cooling effect, is substantial. Again check out customer / athlete reviews and feedback here.
In summary, in Australia where we have one of the highest rates of skin cancer in the world, the sun protection benefits of the Speed Suit are significant. Particularly when you consider racing for the best part of a full day in long course triathlon. Also with no heat penalty for covering up, actually the opposite with the fabric assisting in cooling, and of course it’s quicker. Win, win, win! Aerodynamic performance, while important, is not the only benefit. Actually for many customers it is not necessarily the key one in deciding to go with a Fusion Speed Suit.