At the beginning of the winter I was given a Toggi Keddinton jacket to put through its paces and that was what I did, although in some slightly unexpected ways in the end to how I started. It has seen rain, snow and on the very brief occasion even sun.
To be honest on first look at the jacket my thoughts were it wasn’t the most flattering but this jacket is about functionality not fashion. It is slightly shorter than some traditional riding jackets reaching on me the point of my hip, it also has high cut outs on either side at the hip and zip up back vents. These three features combine to create the most functional point of this jacket, namely the ability to ride without worrying that the back of the jacket will catch the back of the saddle as so many longer jackets do, and it doesn’t ride up as blouson jackets can. With the rear section/vent tending to land on the cantle of the saddle rather than under your bum I found that when it was raining the majority of the rain went behind the saddle instead of down the seat. Not all the time but it saved my saddle from a little more rain than it could have been exposed to.
The downfall of this design though is the limitation of the pockets. There are two outer zip up pockets, one each side above the waist (presumably higher to prevent the lower section of the jacket being weighted down), large enough in that you can fit an iPhone 6 or a set of keys but you wouldn’t be able to put both in one, and being that bit higher they can be a little awkward to access when riding.
I’ve ridden up gallops, dressage schooled, hacked and jumped in the jacket in addition to all yard duties and at no point have I felt restricted nor have I overheated thanks to its breathable fabric.
The weight of the jacket is a nice middleweight, in the depths of winter I teamed it with a base layer and fleece to keep me warm but on the warmer days I only needed a T shirt underneath and if you are like me and like to be a little bit warmer you could find yourself wearing this jacket the majority of the year.
In terms of weather performance although I haven’t exposed it to a sustained downpour at any point (due to my immense skill of avoiding them 😉 ) it has happily coped with short downpours and sustained (read 1 hour plus) lighter rain with never a hint of not being waterproof, and protected me from some blasting chilly winds when hacking out on exposed Wiltshire hills and Salisbury plain (Larkhill weather for those that know it!).
The Keddington is only available in black which I think is a shame but ultimately you will be buying this coat for its comfort and function not its colour!
As for the unexpected tests it has proven to also to suit an expanding waistline! In early winter I found out I was expecting and with that my waist has slowly expanded. I have frustratingly had to stop riding recently having passed 4 months due to my body giving up, much to my dismay but despite my normal breeches long being cast aside in the back of the closet the Keddington has happily and comfortably contained and protected my growing bump and at its current rate will continue to do so for several more months due to the waist positioning.
If I could have free rein over the design I would try some different options with the pockets, whilst I would love to see some reflective piping added to the seams as a safety aspect and perhaps expand the colour options that are available.
Overall I cannot fault the jacket in so much as it is comfortable and weatherproof and proved its worth many times over the winter. There are some minor tweaks to make it perfect but well designed actually waterproof riding jackets are very few and far between and at a MRRP of £140 it sits in the same price range as similar jackets although is available currently in some retailers on sale which means a real bargain for a waterproof jacket.
For more details visit the Toggi Site