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Black Sheep team collection 2.0 bibshorts review

1 Jun 2018
Verdict:

Another piece of kit from Down Under that is doing almost everything right

Cyclist Rating: 
Price: 
£130
For 
• Comfortable chammy that is also discreet • Good breathability • Simple design
Against 
• Grippers have distorted slightly over time

Test cricket, deadly animals, barbecues and now high-end cycling kit. These are things that Australia is renowned for. The first three will be familiar but the last one may come as a bit of surprise to you. However Down Under, the Aussies have really been making strides in the cyclewear market and the latest to break into the scene, Black Sheep, has continued carrying the torch.

Celebrating its fourth year of existence, the Brisbane-based company has come a long way since its start in an oily garage on the Gold Coast, and its latest collection of kit is high-quality, high-design and high-price.

Chief among its latest collection is its Black Sheep team collection 2.0 bibshorts, a set of shorts that promises everyday use while also giving a race performance in a minimalist fashion.

Buy the bibshorts now from Sigma Sports

Rather unfairly, maybe, I first used these bibshorts on a Saturday club ride out and back to Box Hill. Door to door that's a 125km ride, largely on the rivet as I desperately clung on to the wheels of riders much more capable than I.

The day started off in thick cloud keeping temperatures low. The first 5km in the shorts produced a good start. The legs, although light, kept me warm and Black Sheep's decision to steer away from a mesh-like material, like many others, was welcomed.

As the cloud broke and the temperature rose, the shorts adapted well, keeping me cool after short bursts of effort and even deflecting the heat of direct sunlight.

The meshed straps were largely unnoticeable and didn't cause any rubbing or heat in the shoulders despite being secure.

Being so thin, they also sat comfortable on the skin if I opted for no baselayer and did not get me sweaty when I did opt for that further layer.

Hitting the base of Box Hill I shifted myself onto the rivet to push hard on the ascent. Luckily, the comfort of the chammy made this possible.

The BSC high density pad kept enough of a gap between my backside and saddle to keep me comfortable regardless of where I chose to sit, yet was still discreet enough not to be noticed off the bike or out of the saddle.

By kilometre 120 my legs had began to fade and the gear I was pushing became significantly easier although my position on the bike remained the same, much to the testament of the chamois which kept me cosy all ride.

The Black Sheep team collection bibshorts had passed their first test. They had kept me comfortable for the entire five hours of riding and failed to let me down in any circumstance.

This led me to wear these bibs on countless occasions over the Spring, mainly on longer rides, knowing that I would be guaranteed comfort.

Most recently, they saw me through a rolling 105km on the Spanish coast which included both torrential rain and 30 degree sunshine. Again, they passed the test.

These bibshorts have been such a match to all put in front of it that I have worn these week in week out. This constant use has seen them go through the wash a fair amount, always at on a gentle spin and not in hot water, but enough to have a slight effect on the bibshorts' form.

While the leg is still compressing and the bibs still comfortable, I have noticed the grippers to have slightly loosened at the bottom.

It hasn't affected their ability to cling to my leg and prevent it from riding up but there is a noticeable flap which isn't great for aesthetics.

It's a shame because the simplistic design of the bibshorts is something that I applaud. Away from the small sheep's head logo and reflective strip, these bibs are fully black meaning they can be worn with just about any jersey or pair of socks.

If black's too boring for you, Black Sheep also offers the team collection bibshorts in navy, which is all the fashion now in 2018 but is sure to be so last season by next Summer.

Like most Australian kit, the price tag for the team collection bibshorts is north of £100 but not by much. At £130, they are £40 cheaper than rivals Attaquer and £60 less than MAAP which represents good value.

Plus these days, you will be hard pressed to find a high-end set of bibshorts for anything less.

In all, these are a solid pair of bibshorts that have served me through thick and thin this Spring and will no doubt continue to do so in Summer.

Let's just hope we get the weather.

Buy the bibshorts now from Sigma Sports

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