Cyclists are obsessive. Fact. From the best tyre choice on your winter bike to the most aero helmet for racing, we like to make sure everything is ‘just so’ and yet for other areas we can be a little more flippant. For example, many people buy kit based on budget or appearance, and that shorts are shorts and chamois are generally created equal once you move past the basic foam offerings at the lower end. If you are fortunate enough like me to be fairly resilient, then you can use just about any chamois without cream and suffer no sores or discomfort, and so I pulled on the RedWhite bib shorts expecting to struggle to find anything standout about then. I mean, design wise they are pretty average, plain black with minimal logos and no quirks to speak of other than some small reflective strips on the back of the legs so they had their work cut out.
Speaking with Amreet at RedWhite, the objective was all about function over form and this became apparent very quickly. Whilst looking decidedly average at first, a closer inspection showed flat locked seams, quality fabric and features aimed at making comfort the key priority. These shorts are for the serious mile munchers or those of softer skin.
Resources are pulled in from around the globe to gather the best ingredients. Created in Singapore, the ingredients are brought together using a heap of Italian fabric, a spoonful of Hungarian lycra, and plentiful filling of Croatian chamois. All mixed together by Romanian craftsmen to create something special. That may sound a little over the top when they don’t have the history of Castelli or the effortless cool of Rapha but they do have attention to detail and you feel it when you wear them. These are the products of passion.
Take the leg grippers for example. Anyone who has ridden long distances knows how uncomfortable these can become, particularly the traditional narrow band type. Here we have a nice wide band with thousands of tiny grip dots that hold the leg rather than grip it. The result being that the shorts stay in place but you don’t really notice how.I think I have found my bib shorts for life #Cycling Click To Tweet
Then there is the fabric, breathable and well stitched to offer comfort in all areas with an Italian cut meaning it is well fitted and doesn’t have saggy areas. It helps when one of the founders was a product design engineer and the other, worked in development for a government materials engineering research outfit.
“The heart of a BibShort, the chamois. The contact point between you and your saddle is so important that we spared no expense in working to achieve a chamois that not only allows you to sit on the saddle longer, but one that ensures your 100% is focused onto your legs.”
The chamois on these RedWhite Bib Shorts though, is the centrepiece, and never before have I worn a short when I actually notice how pleasant it is to wear. Many shorts do the job, but these actually feel good. You have the choice of The Bib or The Race. The fabrics and cut are the same for both with the Race just having a slightly lighter chamois to allow for riding in the more aggressive racing position but I felt the plusher Bib was the better choice of the two. The chamois is plush, but not recklessly thick and soft, which can sometimes be worse and cause hotspots when compressed. It is thermic moulded, which is a proprietary moulding process that ensures “the chamois remains plush and retains its shape during long days in the saddle”, and it works. Without chamois cream I felt amazing in them and although I too thought shorts were shorts, I now understood just how important they could be when they get it right.
On a long ride you can just plough on through even in a pair of pants if you have to, but if you were going to ride day in day out, be it on a biking holiday, or commuting, or embarking on an adventure such as the Trans Continental Race, then you’d want to protect things and this would be the way to go. In fact, these shorts have been used in anger at the TCR and Race Across America, to name a few due to the quality of them and having worn them I can see why, I have found my go to shorts and actually feel a little disappointed when I find they are in the wash and I have to wear my regular club shorts. I think I have found my bib shorts for life, and I strongly urge you to join the RedWhite army.
Price reflects quality and although the looks are subtle, the comfort and fit are top drawer. You’ll be hard pushed to find something better suited to protecting your gear.