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Isadore Thermoroubaix bibshorts review

14 Nov 2017

A heavy-duty pair of bibshorts that should be reserved for the coldest conditions

Cyclist Rating: 
Keep you warm in the coldest of conditions, comfortable
Leg grippers could be stronger

The fact that pro cyclists ride hundreds of thousands of kilometres throughout their career means they usually know what they're talking about when it comes to good cycling kit. If they think a piece of kit is good, it usually is.

So the fact that clothing brand Isadore is the creation of Slovakian twin brothers and former WorldTour professionals Martin and Peter Velits ensures the brand sticks out from the crowd.

Peter managed a podium at the Vuelta a Espana in 2010 whilst Martin rode as trusty domestique at Quick-Step Floors for five years. Having both been at the top of the sport for the best part of a decade, you would expect that their knowledge and insight would manifest in their clothing brand.

Designed by Martin, the Isadore Thermoroubaix bibshorts, which is made in Isadore's home country of Slovakia, promises to keep you protected from the cold whilst keeping you comfortable for long days in the saddle.

I went into this test with high expectations considering where these bibshorts had come from and thankfully, I wasn't disappointed.

Winter warmer

Taking these bibshorts out of their packaging, the first thing that catches your eye is the mixture of materials.

Doing away with just your usual thin and stretchy lycra, Isadore has paired two thicker forms of Thermoroubaix lycra in a bid at keeping you warm. 

Of these two types of lycra, the more liberally used feels like your traditional bibshorts, just thicker, whilst the bottom segment resembles a fleece material, similar to the type of comfortable jumpers you grandparents wear.

Both are extremely comfortable and both keep you warm. At temperatures down in single figures, I wasn't left cursing my decision to opt for shorts, if anything I actually felt a little too warm at points. 

When on the bike, the fleece material that lines the bibshorts is soft against your skin and helps keep you comfortable, especially after the hours tick by in the saddle.

The exterior has also been treated with DuPont Teflon, a protector that helps repel water and dirt. It isn't going to keep you dry in biblical downpours but will keep the rain off of your legs in most scenarios.

No complaints can really be made regarding the pad. Its just thick enough to be supportive without being two big that it obstructs your pedal stroke. 

This shouldn't come as a surprise, really. With two ex-pros behind the design of these shorts, you would assume a good chamois would be high on the agenda.

The only issue I found when riding around in these Isadore bibshorts was the lack of grippers on the inside of the leg.

Years of rugby and, more importantly, eating like a rugby player, means that I have quite large legs. Despite getting my waist down to what I would consider a slender 34 inches, my legs and specifically my quads have remained disproportioned to my waist.

Riding along, I often noticed that the shorts legs were tempted to rise up, revealing my angel-cake-like cyclist's tan to passers-by.

This became slightly annoying after a while, but to be fair I am sure this is more to do with my own legs rather than a flaw in the fit of the bibshorts themselves.

Ultimately, these are a good pair of bibshorts from Isadore. The Velits brothers set out to make a thermal pair of shorts for the winter, and they have achieved that to decent effect.

The only issue is that when it gets cold, most of us turn straight to bibtights to ensure we keep as warm as possible, making these shorts feel slightly redundant.

Yet partner them with a good pair of legwarmers and chances are they will stand up as well as any bibtights on the market.

For more see Isadore online.


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