- Soft and cosy fabric keeps you warm and snug
- Seamless design and flat lock stitching offers good comfort and wicking
- Hem has a deeply annoying habit of riding up
- Pricey compared to competition
Cube's Baselayer Be Warm Race Long Sleeve does pretty much what it says on the tin, with a thick and cosy stretch synthetic material that's best suited to fairly chilly outings. However, while the seamless construction means there are fewer bits to dig in, I had big issues with it riding up around the waist and it's pretty expensive too.
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The top is made from a synthetic mix that's really very stretchy. That form-fitting shape along with the soft texture and thickness means it's a very warm and cosy place to be, making it best suited to chillier weather, unless you run very cold. There's a really good, close-fitting neck that manages to make you feel nicely snug without throttling you either.
The seamless design and flat-locked stitching make it very comfy, with nothing to rub uncomfortably even when you're layered up and wearing a pack. It's also excellent at wicking away sweat considering the thickness; the thinner pit and back sections woven into the fabric really help here. There's also a lighter weight material 'Be Cool' option if you tend to run hot too.
However, the close fit does come at a cost, as the stretch material rode up quite a lot at the waist. Much as this could be blamed on a beer gut, that's not the case here, as I'm bang on Cube's sizing for the small I tested. At 68kg and 172cm, I'm not an emaciated racing snake, but I'm certainly nowhere near portly either.
No matter how hard I yanked the top down to begin with and regardless of whether I wore it under bib shorts or tights to try and hold it in place, a few miles into a ride I'd end up with an exposed back and belly and the top looking like some kind of sporting tank top. I'd guess a bit of silicone on a broader hem might help, but it's a common issue with most of these super stretchy base layers I've tried.
Moving to Cube's more square fitting non-'Race' lineup would probably be the solution to my tank top woes, but then you're missing out on all the snug 'wearing-a-teddy-bear' fit in cold weather. It's an issue compounded by the fact that it really isn't cheap either - at £70 you can get a couple of the slim-fitting classic Helly Hansen Lifa base layers for the same money.
For most people, the riding up issues along with the price will override the lovely feel and warmth of this 'Race' cut base layer. Unless you're extremely slender or shaped like a carrot, it'd be worth looking elsewhere in the extensive Cube base layer range for something a little less unintentionally revealing.