Triathlon wetsuits: 14 of the best tested and rated
14 tri-specific wetsuits, for every budget, are put to the test by Matt Baird and Jack Sexty. The first 7 are priced £75-£350 while the final 7 are priced £400-£650
The original Aegis has long been our go-to race wetsuit, so we were eager to test the latest version. Once we had a chum help us secure the breakaway zipper (a new addition for 2017 but you’ll need to find a buddy if you swim alone), our medium felt tighter than anything here, a theme of Huub suits across the chest. In the water, however, the Aegis – when swimming well – was the swiftest suit here, aided no doubt by the Smoothskin coating and recommended 3mm core/5mm leg neoprene thickness. The new lower cut neckline remains chafe-free and stopped any water ingress, while the arm flexibility is impressive. huubdesign.com
Verdict: We’re not sold on the zipper but the fastest here 86%
Buy from www.wiggle.co.uk
Solid and reliable aren’t sexy terms but they’re what you want in a mid-level suit. And the Challenger ticks these boxes. The brand’s 4mm Aqua-Drive core helps align the body to aid efficiency and minimise drag, while the Yamamoto 39 neoprene material delivers comfort, warmth and durability. The 2mm under arm panels offer adequate flexibility, but no more, and the 4mm legs provide, for us, the minimum-required amount of lift. The horseshoe-cut design of the lower legs make this one of the speediest suits to remove, and we like the design. aquasphereswim.com
Verdict: A strong, solid and striking contender 82%
Buy from www.wiggle.co.uk
Whether it’s their £200 Fusion or top-end Helix, Blueseventy’s wetsuits universally score with us. The Reaction continues this form, instantly stylish out of the box and even better in the soup. The 2017 version has thankfully dispensed with the catch panels of the previous model and the result is a fantastically-crafted suit. With 4mm and 5mm sections in the chest and legs there’s a good level of buoyancy and warmth, and upgrades to the 2017 model have witnessed more flexibility in the already lithe upper body. It’s quick to get off as well. blueseventy.co.uk
Verdict: A stellar top-end suit at a mid-end price 91%
Buy from www.sigmasport.co.uk
The low-mid verdict
The £100 category here is convincingly won by the Dhb Wetsuit, which uses the might of Wiggle to produce a well-made, durable and comfortable suit that we’d heartily recommend as a first tri wetsuit for any beginner triathletes out there on a budget. It’s just a shame they haven’t bothered to give it a proper name. The Lomo, although not without merit, pales in comparison.
The Aropec is solid enough and has some neat touches, but for £50 more you can buy the Roka Maverick Comp II. A suit boasting SCS coating and 1.5mm arm flexibility is staggering at this price.
The Huub and Aqua Sphere, one fast and innovative, the other reliable and durable, have much to recommend them, and the Blueseventy pushes the Roka all the way as the best suit here. But it’s the £100 saving of the Roka that makes it our Best on Test and something we’ll be using during the race season due to that 1.5mm arm flexibility and 3/5mm buoyancy mix.