Lots to like about this jacket, which appears to offer good levels of weather protection, looks good and has enough extra little features to catch the eye.
Much to like here, including good beading away of external moisture. The elasticated inner wrist cuffs really excelled - very useful!
Seems a little shorter than some waterproof jackets so may not extend far enough below the waistline for taller gents of a certain build.
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Sunderland Valberg Waterproof Jacket Review
What we’re all looking for when we have to slip the waterproof top on is something that keeps the rain out and allows our body to breathe, while still letting us swing freely and unimpeded.
How tall am I/what is my build?
I'm 5ft 9ins and not the slimmest member of the Golf Monthly team.
What was the packaging like?
Standard polythene bag with a nicely designed and suitably informative label/tag
What do I normally wear - does it come up big/small?
In tops and waterproof outerwear I vary between Large and XL depending on the brand and how vigorously I'm pursuing some sort of exercise regime at the time! After discussing sizing with the Sunderland team, they were confident Large would be the one to go for.
How did it fit/feel/perform?
There was certainly much to like here, and its waterproofness came under test the day after our on-course testing when a particularly heavy squall moved through my home village.
It was encouraging to see the water mostly beading off the surface rather than absorbing into it even in a deluge, usually a sign that the waterproof technology built into the fabric is up to the job.
We were able to swing unimpeded out on the course wearing the Sunderland Valberg jacket. The stretch panelling allowed good freedom of movement, although admittedly this was wearing just a shirt underneath in relatively mild conditions.
You will need to think about how and when you’re most likely to use the jacket before deciding on size as wearing it over a thicker mid-layer or jumper on cold days would probably require the next size up.
The Large sample we tested would be fine on milder, wet days. Something to consider before making a purchase.
It's also seems perhaps a little shorter than some jackets out there, so might not suit if you want something to sit a little lower down your backside.
Any extra details you noticed?
Some golfers really want to batten down the hatches more than others inside their wet-weather gear. The Valberg gives you plenty of choice here, with sturdy, well-designed pull-cord mechanisms to vary the fit around the neck, waist and hem.
We’re generally not that keen on tightening things up too much, while others will be pleased to know that the options are there if so desired.
The elasticated inner wrist cuffs are one of the best and most noticeable features compared to other jackets. They provide a snug, yet unrestricted fit beneath the outer Velcro adjusters.
The zips appear sturdy and well-designed for protection while not being difficult to zip and unzip as can sometimes be the case with rubberised zips.
The idea of fleeced pocket linings to keep your hands warm is a good one, although finding a groove-cleaning brush attached by elastic to the inside of the right-hand pocket did come as a bit of a surprise!
Is it useful? Maybe, maybe not, although the accessibility of this unique additional feature of the Sunderland Valberg jacket could certainly encourage you to clean your grooves a little more often in off-season golf.
Can you wear it off the course?
As with many modern waterproof jackets, this wouldn't look out of place around town or if used for other outdoor activities such as hiking or fell-walking
How does it come out after the wash/do you need to iron it?
Stick it on a hanger straight out of the washing machine when you occasionally need to wash it and it will dry quickly and pretty much crease-free.
Jeremy Ellwood has worked in the golf industry since 1993 and for Golf Monthly since 2002 when he started out as equipment editor. He is now a freelance journalist writing mainly for Golf Monthly across the whole spectrum from courses and Rules to equipment and instruction. He also edits The Golf Club Secretary Newsletter, a highly regarded trade publication for golf club secretaries and managers, and has authored or co-authored three books and written for a number of national papers including The Telegraph and The Independent. He is a senior panelist for Golf Monthly's Top 100 UK & Ireland Course Rankings and has played all of the Top 100 plus 91 of the Next 100, making him well-qualified when it comes to assessing and comparing our premier golf courses. He has now played well over 950 golf courses worldwide in 35 countries, right across the spectrum from the humblest of nine-holers in the Scottish Highlands to the very grandest of international golf resorts, but put him on a links course anywhere and he will be blissfully content.
Jezz can be contacted via Twitter - @JezzEllwoodGolf
Jeremy is currently playing...
Driver: Ping G425 LST 10.5˚ (draw setting), Mitsubishi Tensei AV Orange 55 S shaft
3 wood: Ping G425 Max 15˚ (set to flat +1), Mitsubishi Tensei AV Orange 65 S shaft
Hybrid: Ping G425 17˚, Mitsubishi Tensei CK Pro Orange 80 S shaft
Irons 3-PW: Ping i525, True Temper Dynamic Gold 105 R300 shafts
Wedges: Ping Glide 4.0 50˚ and 54˚, 12˚ bounce, True Temper Dynamic Gold 105 R300 shafts
Putter: Ping Fetch 2021 model, 33in shaft (set flat 2)
Ball: Varies but mostly now TaylorMade Tour Response