Posted On 27 Apr 2024
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This entry is part 21 of 29 in the series AusMotorcyclist Issue#28


This month I have taken delivery of a new adventure touring suit, which was long overdue, having worn my Klim suit for over three years now, despite it still being in excellent condition.

Held Biker Fashion is a brand I’ve really fallen for. The gear is top class and very reasonably priced, so when it came to looking for a new adventure touring suit, I chose the Carese II jacket, which matches to the Torno II pants and I also got the accessory Sas-Tec back protector.

Features of the Carese II include the outer shell being made from DuPont Cordura 500D textile, with a Coolmax breathable mesh inner lining and 3D air mesh panels in the back to promote air circulation. To make it waterproof, there is a removable Gore-Tex 3-layer technology membrane inner jacket, which is thin, yet also offers some nice warmth.

You also get waterproof external pockets, 3 inner pockets, internal cell phone pocket, map/document pocket, 1 back pocket, air-vent zippers in front, back and arms, magnetic closure pockets, which double as air vents, stretch panels at shoulders, waist belt, dual arm adjustment, soft collar, connecting zip to pants and 3M Scotchlite reflectors.

Price – $800

In terms of protection, there is space for the full-length Sas-Tec accessory back protector, which can be integrated into the jacket lining.

Standard you get a thin piece of Temper foam which is comfortable, but wouldn’t offer much protection. For the shoulders and elbows, you get exclusive CE-approved Sas-Tec protectors, identifiable by the bright green colour.

Because this jacket has so many features, it took me some time to use to them. I’d say at least three rides and a night of mucking around with the jacket in front of the tele beforehand.

I’m not normally a fan of removable Gore-Tex liners, but being able to get cool out in the dirt when the temperature rises will be a handy thing to have. The liner packs to virtually nothing and will fit into a midsized tankbag when combined with the Torno II pants liner. However, I did find the liners fl ow a decent amount of air with the vents open – something I’ve not had with other removable waterproof liners.

Sizing ranges from S – 5XL, I took size 3XL in jacket and pants, which is on par with other brands sizing. Visit the Held Australia website – to grab this exact suit, available in a variety of colour combinations. You too will see why I’ve fallen in love with Held Biker Fashion!

You’d have to pay twice as much to get the level of quality and features the Carese II offers, so get a smile on your dial and get to it! SW

Price – $550

To match the Carese II jacket, the Torno II pants are the way to go.

Made from the same DuPont Cordura 500D textile, Coolmax breathable mesh inner lining and removable Gore-Tex 3-layer membrane inner they offer coolness in the summer and water proofing and plenty of warmth in the cooler months.

These pants feature 4 external pockets, air-vent zippers, magnetic closure pockets which double as air vents, stretch panels at back and knees, Nomex heat resistant fabric on the inner calves to protect from exhaust heat, Pittards leather anti-slip seat patch, double leg adjustment, zips and velcro adjustment at the ankles, high waisted with adjustable Velcro flaps and button fixtures for optional braces.

Protection comes via the exclusive CE-approved Sas-Tec knee protectors, which I have removed so I can wear my knee braces, removable Temperfoam hip padding, which is soft and comfortable, although if you want more protection you can get Sas-Tec protectors. There is also a pocket for an optional coccyx protector. You get 3M Scotchlite reflectors for night time safety and there is the connecting zip for the jacket.

I found these pants to be extremely comfortable over long distances. The vents fl ow as much air as any other pants I’ve had, but one of the best things about the Torno II pants is the extensive range of sizing. S – 5XL in standard sizing, or you can get stocky sizes: K-M – K-2XL. Or if you have slim legs, you can get the L-S – L-2XL. I took the standard 3XL size and found the length very generous making them perfect while on the bike. As far as adventure style riding pants go, the Torno II are about as comfy and feature packed as you’ll get.

Visit the Held Australia website – to grab a pair of these pants, which come in a variety of colour combinations. SW

Price – $45

When I’m out in the dirt I want high levels of protection, so I opted for the accessory Sas-Tec back protector for my Carese II jacket. Being Level 2 CE-certifi ed you are getting high levels of protection from a very comfortable and flexible protector. Fitment is perfect for the Held jacket and matches the Sas-Tec shoulder and elbow protectors already fitted. Visit the Held Australia website – to grab one and see the entire range of Sas-Tec protectors available for Held Biker Fashion. SW

Price – $29.99 a pair plus postage

Throughout history there are endless examples of the “Duh! Effect”. That’s when you see something and go “Duh! Why didn’t I think of that?” It happened to me again when I saw a picture of someone using Ventz. They are so simple that it’s really difficult to believe that it has taken this long for someone to invent them.

Of course simplicity is no guarantee of effectiveness; think of using rocks against tanks. No, the invention needs to work, too, and Ventz do so quite effortlessly. As they should – they are really just a way of holding your jacket sleeve open so that the wind generated by the bike’s movement can blow up your arm, cooling you and sucking more air up from the bottom of the jacket. They are made from what Ventz claims is shatter proof plastic, with a screen to keep bugs out and a clip to hold them onto your jacket.

The only difficulty I found was that I had to take my rather large and heavy watch off my wrist, because it interfered with the Vent (assuming that that is the singular of Ventz).

Ventz are made in England and distributed in Australia by a Queensland company, which is a good segue into a mention that these are terrific for hot conditions. See or write to, and tell Sharon that ours are working well. Interestingly, they work better with full, un-vented jackets. And of course if you get too cool, just pull them out of your sleeves and put them into your pocket.

Price – $450

Old joke from Pogo (and if you don’t know who that is, go Google Pogo Possum): Police sergeant says: “This girl’s been drugged!” – “I know,” says policeman, “I done drug her all the way from Peachtree Street!” We can only hope she was wearing Draggin jeans…

We are not (often) drug by police, but we do wear Draggin jeans a lot of the time. This is partly because we have all experienced gravel rash to some extent or another, and partly because we don’t want to experience it – and its sequel – again. If you’ve once had a grinning nurse with a hard brush scrub your recently-flayed flesh you will understand why.

I am planning for several longer trips at the moment, and because all of them will feature unpredictable and changeable temperatures my thoughts turned to these versatile pants once again. Draggin’s owner Grant Mackintosh had shown me the new Holeshot style and they looked to be the go.

The Holeshots have what I’ve been told is unique in fabric pants, namely CE Level 2 approval for the entire garment. The CE mark certifies that the safety features – protectors, the material itself and the way the garment is made – meet European standards, of which CE Level 2 is, as I understand it,the highest. See But whatever the standard, the Holeshots will resist abrasion for 7.45 seconds which is longer than some leathers. They also include CE approved hip and knee armour, which fits into pockets sewn into the jeans.

Holeshot jeans are fairly bulky, which makes them warm without being stifl ing – because they still breathe.

The full yellow Kevlar/Dyneema comfort lining which provides the bulk is knitted and not woven. This produces a soft material in which the loop of the fabric faces the road.

This is more than twice as effective in dissipating heat and resisting abrasion than woven fibre and also slows you down faster.

At first sight, these jeans look a bit long but sit on your bike and you’ll find that they are actually just about right. They also have straps that go under your boots so the pants’ legs don’t ride up.

So bring on the trips, and the changeable weather. I’ll be ready with my Draggin Holeshots PT

About the Author
Australian Motorcyclist Magazine is Australia's leading motorcycle travel magazine.
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