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Chapeau! Tempo thermal bibtights review

6 Mar 2018

A no-nonsense pair of bibtights that do what they promise

Cyclist Rating: 
Comfortable chammy, warm, simple design
Size guide slightly generous

Buy the Tempo thermal bibtights from Chapeau! here

Hidden away in a chic design studio in the depths of Italy, I picture a roundtable of men and women passionately arguing to and fro about the design of their next wave of cycling kit.

'No, it must be stylish and elegant with hints of navy blue and a minimalist design.' 

'You're wrong, we must be loud and proud, it must be fluorescent with white bibshorts and have our branding emblazoned across it at every chance.'

Sometimes the former win the argument and the kit looks every bit as stylish as we expect. However, quite often the latter get their way and we are left with kit that leaves much to be desired.

Thankfully, it seems like the team at Chapeau! ignored this debate and stuck to what most cyclists yearn for in a pair of bottoms, plain black bibtights.

The first benefit of Chapeau opting for all black bibtights is that they can practically be worn with anything. I could go for bright green shoes (like pictured) or a blinding fluoro jacket and either will match the understated look of these all black bibtights.

Secondly, all black is quite the ally when it comes to protecting your modesty through the winter months. Mud splatter on black fails to cause blushing and does a darn good job of staying opaque even in the wet.

Thirdly, any reference to black reminds me of Charlie Higson's Johnny Nice Painter and the brilliant Fast Show which leads to me rewatching clips on YouTube for the next hour or so.

So while some may scoff at this 'boring' design, I say chapeau to Chapeau! for daring to be so simple.

Beyond design, these bibtights are like Ronsil, doing exactly what they says on the tin. Chapeau! promised that these bibtights will be a 'solid performer' made from a 'warm fabric' and they do this to a tee.

By choosing a variation of fabric thicknesses across the tights, the vital areas such as your upper legs are kept nice and warm while the calves are given a lighter fabric which keeps the tights light and flexible.

Chapeau! has also incorporated a high waist and back straps that act as an additional layer on your upper half making you feel that bit more secure, keeping your core temperature at a comfortable level even on the coldest days.

I found that even when the 'Beast from the East' hit last week, a long sleeve baselayer and winter jacket did the trick thanks to the added layer provided by the bibtights.

While these are not waterproof they are competent at keeping most rain and road spray out. Only on the odd occasion when it truly did rain did I notice the tights had been breached.

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Chapeau! says that its chammy is recommended 'for rides up to 5 hours in duration' so to put this to the test I rode for five hours. 106km and 2,100m of riding around the hills of Kent and Sussex later, this claim thankfully stood up.

Regardless of whether I pushed myself deep on to the saddle's rear or slotted myself firmly on the rivet, I felt like I was being supported by my chammy and by the end of the ride I was all intact and had none of the aches and pains attributed to less robust chammy pads.

The one point of warning with these pretty solid bibtights is the size guide. I tested a large which when put into numbers is a 34 inch waist. I sit at the upper-end of a 34 inch waist yet found the bibtights to be slightly generous.

I'd recommend plucking for your 'actual' size or even considering going down a size as I feel that Chapeau! has slightly missed the mark in terms of its sizing here. Although, it was nice to finally be a medium again.

All in all, these Chapeau! Tempo thermal bibtights tick many boxes and at £89.99 represent good value for money. They kept me warm, kept me comfortable and keep me looking cool (or so I thought).

If I'm honest you will be hard-pressed to find a better performing pair of bibtights that will not set you back three figures and personally I am thankful that Chapeau! stuck with plain old boring black.

Buy the Tempo thermal bibtights from Chapeau! here


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