OK, so this probably isn’t the time of year to be writing about bib shorts and short sleeve jerseys, but just because it’s cold out doesn’t mean people stop needing them. For the past month I’ve been some new clobber from the latest brand in the business, Ride clothing, and have been thoroughly impressed.
They brand is the brainchild of a few people with years of experience working in the cycle industry, and decided to put their collective knowledge into producing a nice range of cycle clothing, with the aim of offering high performance value for money garments.
They’re based near the South Downs so have ideal riding right on their doorstep for testing the clothing. It’s all designed in the UK and manufactured to high standards in Italy. And we’re pleased to report that the fit, often an issue, is just right: the bib shorts and jersey give a really good fit on this tester’s medium sized body.
BDS Men’s Jersey
The BDS Men’s Jersey uses a Meryl Performance fabric. It’s very stretchy, which ensures it fits like a second skin. It's well shaped around the shoulders, arms and waist, comfort is good.
The fabric is also antibacterial and, when you’re getting a sweat on, it manages to do a very good job of pulling moisture away from the skin and filtering it through to the next layer to deal with, or the air if you’re not wearing anything over the top.
Considering the low price tag of just £39.99, it’s packed with the kind of features you wouldn't normally expect at this price. French seams increase its durability and the full length zipper is a cam-lock design. Under the arms live mesh panels for improving ventilation in this sweaty hot spot. The sleeves are a little longer than we prefer, but the stretchy material does allow a range of adjustment.
Three rear pockets embrace all manner of baggage, but we found the stretchy material made it tricky to access the pockets while on the move, and also experienced a little too much sag with loaded pockets – best to put most of the stuff in your hydration pack and keep the pockets empty then. A small zipped pocket is ideal for your car keys or, with its waterproof lining, a mobile phone.
Forza Italia Bib Short
The chamois is a comfortably shaped foam design with cutaway areas to relieve pressure. On the first ride with these shorts, I put in a five hour stint over the South Downs Way, and I’m happy to report that comfort was incredible (especially considering the low price and the competition they’re up against). They’re easily the most comfortable of the many budget priced shorts I’ve tested.
Flat-lock stitching features throughout, another sign that no corners have been cut, and the leg grippers do the job they’re designed to with little complaint of discomfort. And best of all, at £26.99 you’ll still have plenty of change left over.
We have been really impressed with RIDE Clothing. Not only do they represent great value for money, they’re fantastically well made and fit really nicely.
Available now from www.ridebosh.com