The very high specification full-length offshore-focussed Helly Hansen Ægir Race Jacket is perhaps the ultimate sailing jacket
The second generation Helly Hansen Ægir Race Jacket is a top notch product made for the ultimate in comfort and protection, without compromise. It’s also noticeably lighter than the Norwegian firm’s Skagen Offshore Jacket.
The Helly Hansen Ægir Race Jacket is the outcome of extensive work with professional racing teams who know what works best in extreme conditions, including Thomas Colville, Pip Hare and Joan Mulloy.
The result is a very high specification full-length offshore jacket that’s still surprisingly lightweight, streamlined and comfortable to wear.
A big element of the comfort factor is down to the choice of three-layer fabric that doesn’t need a lining.
The new four-layer fabric is supple and doesn’t noticeably restrict movement. Yet it offers a very high level of both waterproofing and breathability. It’s made of 50 per cent recycled content and uses a PFC free durable water repellent treatment.
The lack of a separate lining helps makes this jacket easy to don and doff – it slips on and off very easily, even when wearing many layers underneath.
It also dries more quickly after use than the lower-specification two-layer fabrics with separate linings used for lower-priced foul weather gear.
Elements particularly worthy of praise include the extra-high fleece lined collar with an effective storm flap that’s shaped to cover your nose. This increases warmth by stopping draughts, as well as markedly reducing the chances of getting water down your neck when a wave breaks over the boat.
In addition, the adjustable high visibility hood has an effective peak to divert water clear of your face and neck, even in extreme conditions.
There are also chest level hand warmer pockets lined with thin fleece – enough to give some warmth, but not so thick they will absorb lots of water and take ages to dry.
There’s also a pair of smaller cargo pockets and an internal pocket.
This is a versatile garment for those who cover many miles at sea. It’s therefore the kit you will want for sailing very long distances offshore in inclement weather, whether racing, cruising or on delivery.
Want to see what else is available? Take a look at our full guide to the best offshore jackets