If you’re a cyclist, you might well have heard of ‘the rules’; to some (me, for example) they are a set of tongue-in-cheek guidelines on how to go about being a ‘proper’ cyclist.
Others get pretty heated about being ‘told what to do’ by a small gang of cycling snobs.
Each to their own.
“Rule #XIV” states that, whatever else you choose to wear, shorts should always be black – sound advice, whether you like it or not.
But, let’s cut to the chase – £180 is a lot of money.
For the very best of the bib-short genre, that is the going rate. If a pair of shorts can look good and get you through 6 or 7 hours on the bike in something resembling comfort, then it’s money well spent.
You may disagree, but try riding for 6 or 7 hours wearing a pair of cheapo bargain basement bibs. There is middle ground, of course, but if any piece of kit is worth splashing out on it’s the shorts.
The problem is this: these are good bib-shorts, that are largely very comfortable, but they are not a £180 pair of bib shorts. The benchmark at that price comes from the likes of Assos, or Rapha; manufacturers with a proven track record of protecting our delicate bits.
They are sold through www.sportpursuit.com, who have a business model that I don’t fully understand which involves flash sales of cycling kit with superb discounts. These ‘M’ series bib shorts are, from time to time, available at the knock down price of £69.99.
At that price, they are absolutely a great value piece of kit.
Because they are comfortable.
I found the chamois to be quite thick and cushioned and certainly good for three or four hours, and the fit, described as ‘compression level’ is snug and supportive.
After several long days on the bike recently I pulled on these bibs for a short-ish recovery ride, and the way they gripped my tired legs and held together my ragged muscles was rather nice.
Just not £180 nice, that’s all.
I should also mention the sizing. The size chart suggests the Medium is a 31-33 inch waist, with the Large at 33-35 inches. I have a 32 inch waist, I tried the Medium, and they were definitely too small.
The Large is a good fit.
‘Size up’ would be my advice.
So, in conclusion, if you can pick a pair up for £69.99 then I doubt you’d find better bib-shorts at that price.
But if you feel like splashing out big money, consider your options.