Technical details
Open Accordion
Size + fit
Open Accordion

Fit guide: The Race to Zero Puffer Vest has a regular fit.

Model wears: Sadiq Desh is 6ft 1.5 / 187cm with a 37 inch / 94cm chest. Sadiq has an athletic build and is wearing the Race to Zero Puffer Vest in size Medium.

Personalised advice: See our size guide for more advice on sizing, or you can ask us for personalised sizing advice here.

Returns and exchanges: Don’t worry if you order something and it doesn’t fit – we have a free, no hassle 30 day return and exchange period.

Fits chest83-9091-9899-106107-114115-122123-130
Fits waist71-7676-8181-8686-9191-9696-101
Fits chest33-3636-3939-4242-4545-4848-51
Fits waist28-3030-3232-3434-3636-3838-40
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Race to Zero Puffer Vest

The race to zero

There are some very simple rules of running. Rule one: lighter is nearly always better. Weight is the enemy – whether it’s your body or your kit. It’s the enemy of going fast. It’s the enemy of going long. And it’s the enemy of running like you ran when you were a kid. Your gear should feel weightless. So we’re building the lightest running system in the world. The mission is to get as close to zero as we can on the weighing scales, so once you put it on you forget it’s there.

Race to Zero Puffer Vest

A minimalist system of running gear

Race to Zero is an ultralight packable system built for running 5km or 5 days straight. There are six pieces in the system – a short and long sleeve t shirt, shorts, jacket, puffer and vest. Each piece is built with advanced materials, packs down into itself and fits into the palm of your hand. The entire system weighs just 940 grams.

Race to Zero packed

Every piece packs into itself

Every piece in the Race to Zero system packs down into itself in exactly the same way. At the bottom of the vest you’ll find a black, zero-shaped pocket. It’s the same black, zero-shaped pocket you’ll find on every piece in the system. To pack the vest up you turn the pocket inside out and push the vest into it until you’re left with a pouch that fits into the palm of your hand. Once it’s packed down you can stuff it into your race bag, or clip it on using the elastic hanging loop.

Race to Zero packed

Why simplicity matters

Running brings amazing clarity. It simplifies your decision making. And once you start running through entire days or nights, your thinking is often reduced to the very basics: I am hungry. I hurt. I am tired. I would like to sleep now. So we’re building the ultimate minimalist system to reduce your thinking and decision making to a minimum. You won’t have to think about what you pack. And you won’t have to think about what you carry with you.

Race to Zero Puffer Vest

Works for 5km or 5 days

Ultramarathons are a really fast way of finding out who you are and what you’re capable of. They’re also a really quick way of finding out if your kit works. So the Race to Zero system is designed to see you through the toughest races on Earth. Even the smallest failure point can be enough to drive you slightly crazy on a long enough timescale. If it rubs the first time, you can bet the 10,000th time is going to feel like torture. That’s why we’re building gear that’s quiet, seamless, stretchy, lightweight, and fast drying. It’s designed to not be noticed.

Race to Zero Puffer Vest

Ultra-lightweight and comfortable

Weighing just 196 grams, the Race to Zero Puffer Vest is super lightweight for an insulated vest. Whether it’s on your back or in your backpack you’ll never notice it’s there. The vest’s outer shell and inner lining are both made from an ultra-lightweight and 100% recycled nylon which is engineered to be the same thickness as silk. So it will always keep you warm and comfortable.

Race to Zero Puffer Vest

Constructed with super-compact insulation

The vest is built with super-compact synthetic insulation which keeps you as warm as much heavier and thicker puffer vests. That’s because we compress the insulation down to less than a third of its original size before it’s stitched into the vest. And while the insulation takes up 70% less space, it retains 80% of its thermal properties.

Race to Zero Puffer Vest

Built with continuous sheets of insulation

Most insulated vests are built with baffles. These are the long puffy strips or squares you see all over puffer vests which are designed to keep the insulation in place. For the Race to Zero Puffer Vest we’ve done something completely new. It’s built with continuous sheets of insulation anchored down with stitched bartacks to reduce weight, bulk and the potential for cold spots.

Race to Zero Puffer Vest

Massive side vents let you cool off

Two massive zipped side vents help to cool you down if you get hot. They run all the way from the bottom hem of the vest and almost up to your armpits. So you can open up the vest like a sleeping bag on both sides if you need to cool down rapidly.

Race to Zero Puffer Vest

Repels wind and water

As well as keeping you warm, we’ve also built the vest to be wind and water repellent. The nylon fibres on the outside of the material are mechanically closed during the production process which makes the puffer highly wind resistant. And it comes with a water repellent coating so that light rain will simply roll off the vest’s surface, keeping you drier for longer.

Race to Zero Puffer Vest

Side pockets for carrying your gear

You’ll find two large zipped pockets on either side of the vest. They’re big enough to hold gels, water bottles, or maps. Both pockets come with lockable zip pulls that fasten in position.

Race to Zero Puffer Vest

Why we don’t use down for the insulation

Over 80% of the down in jackets and vests worldwide comes from ducks kept in industrial farms in China. Practises include ducks being plucked alive and feathers being harvested from force-fed ducks bred to produce foie gras. With complex international supply chains that cross cultures and borders that are hard to police, the best anyone can guarantee is that the ducks they used were already dead when they plucked them. So the only real way to ensure you don’t harm ducks, is by not using them.


Our insulation is made from recycled plastic

Instead of pulling feathers out of ducks, we pull plastic out of used plastic bottles and turn them into insulating synthetic fibres. Every single vest uses just under 5 half-litre recycled plastic bottles. Staying warm is all about trapping as many pockets of air next to your body as possible, so these synthetic fibres are built to be hollow, which means you’ll automatically have millions of air pockets trapped next to your skin. And as the curl of the fibres traps more air than straight fibres, the microscopic texture of the fibre itself also retains heat.

Race to Zero Puffer Vest

How the insulation performs against down

While down traps heat well, it doesn’t breathe well. So it’s not the ideal option if you’re working hard. If you’re running our insulation will do a better job of regulating your body temperature, as it will breathe better and won’t hold onto sweat. It’s also made from a blend of different fibres each with their own ‘multi-shape’ structure. Some are designed for puffiness, others for resilience or thermal efficiency. By making each fibre a different shape, we stop them linking together and clumping like down does when it gets wet.


How plastic is turned into insulation

To turn recycled plastic bottles into insulation we work with pioneers in thermal insulation based in Milan. They’ve been working on recycled fibres and using plastic bottles in their technology since the 1980s, well before it was the cool or right thing to do. They use a process called mechanical recycling to blend the bottles, eliminating the need for hazardous chemicals and creating synthetic fibres that have the highest loft for the lowest weight, just like down.

Race to Zero Puffer Vest

Works with the Race to Zero T Shirts

Engineered with thousands of tiny perforations to let air flow in and out, the Race to Zero short and long sleeve T Shirts are built to take on the world’s toughest races or your daily training run. Weighing just 113 and 142 grams, they’re built with exactly the same ultra-soft Italian material we use to build the inner lining of the Race to Zero Shorts. They’re high-wicking, fast-drying, and stretch with you whatever you’re doing. And a silver-based antimicrobial treatment fights the odour molecules created by sweat, to keep you comfortable whether you’re 5km or 5 days into your run.

Race to Zero Puffer Vest

Works with the Race to Zero Shorts

Weighing just 127 grams the Race to Zero Shorts are built from densely-woven nylon microfibres that are engineered to be the same thickness as silk. Water repellent, fast drying and highly elastic, they’re ultra-soft and lightweight, while being durable enough to work in the toughest races. All the seams and details are laser cut and bonded to reduce the chance of chafing. And the inner lining of the shorts is made from the same Italian material as the Race to Zero T Shirt. The lining is engineered with thousands of tiny perforations to create airflow, while a silver-based antimicrobial treatment fights the odour molecules created by sweat.

Race to Zero Puffer Vest

Works with the Race to Zero Jacket

At just 85 grams the Race to Zero Jacket is the lightest of all six pieces in the system. It’s water repellent and wind resistant, comes with 27 laser cut vents and deep storage pockets, making it the ultimate utility layer to take with you on any adventure. The jacket works best worn over the vest in cold and wet conditions.

Race to Zero packed

Vollebak started life on a run

While startups normally begin with two kids in a garage with a dream, the idea for Vollebak started life while we were running through the Amazon, Alps and Namib Desert. While surviving heatstroke, broken bones, bullet ants, angry snakes, tarantulas, hallucinations, and falling asleep while running, we decided that setting up our own company wouldn’t be so hard. We’d always have access to running water, a toilet and a bed. And we could try and tackle some of the challenges we’d faced. Today we make some of the most advanced gear on the planet. And it now includes the gear we’d loved to have raced in.

Works well with