After a development program that encompassed six years, with the release of the S9 series bib shorts, Assos has laid out a course that is easily distinguished from their race bib previous design path. As this is Assos you are getting their proprietary textiles, classic cycling position fit and impeccable construction, in a completely new bib short package Assos enthusiasts will embrace. Witness the Equipe RS S9 Bib Shorts, a step forward for Assos and the cyclists who value and appreciate the quality and functionality that ensures comfortable performance on the bike.
For Assos design and fabrics are fully intertwined. Understanding the physical requirements of the piece, how to construct it, and what fabric or fabrics to use is all part of a single process. The Equipe RS S9 Bib Shorts feature their TYPE.411 textile, compressive warp knit fabric developed for a second-skin fit that has a silky feel for absolute comfort and freedom of movement. This fabric also delivers workhorse durability, which ensures long life with proper care. This is a multi-year, race-level material that delivers the increased blood flow and muscle support from compression that has proven beneficial to performance and fatigue reduction.
The short-section design is completely new, with Assos creating a more unified structure that is cut as one piece, which resembles a butterfly, then curling it over and stitch as necessary. This is where the warp knit fabric shines, with fewer actual panels, and more continuity. The needs of the legs are treated differently than the needs of the groin, lower abdominals, and external obliques. At the rear, a rollbar panel is the connecting base for the bib section, with a constant, directional anchor point that ensures great fit and structure for both the bib and chamois pad. What Assos is calling the Ergobox construction provides a square panel construction which frames the chamois insert in the back, boxing it in for added stability.
The pad itself is a new pre-formed, 3D three layer waffle-type design, covered with the antibacterial microfiber booster S9 Basalt top sheet, padded with an ultralight open-cell foam that delivers shock absorbing comfort, yet breathes, is superlight and not bulky. Assos is using a horizontal stabilizing stitch that complements the Ergobox, and locks the chamois to the short. It is not free floating. The side panels do feature the Golden Gate system that allows the pad to move with the leg action, essentially eliminating friction against the skin, while allowing the TYPE.411 textile to move in it's own right. This is a completely new chamois for Assos and for those who felt the more bulky version used over the last few years had been surpassed by the competition, a welcome change. The front section features large perforations for even more active air flow to keep you dry and as cool as possible. With all the development of the Equipe RS S9, nothing may be more exciting than the new chamois.
Unless, of course you had already embraced bibs with flat straps and more minimalist
yolk. If so, you'll love the new Carbon XBib design. Each strap is cut from a single piece of material and crossed in the mid back, with an incredibly consistent stretch that delivers comfort but also helps to prevent the strap from folding over. The center of the x-yolk joins the bib straps in a minimal fashion so nearly the entire back can breathe freely, passing heat and perspiration direct to a baselayer or your jersey. No back panel adding another layer or limiting direct air flow.
There is no doubt that Assos rode their previous success through several updated design iterations. There is also no doubt that many cyclists loved the S-series chamois and bibs. Yet there has been a quiet rumble from those who wanted a lighter weight, faster breathing, more compressive bib short. The same can be said for a thinner, more breathable chamois. With the Equipe RS S9 Bib Shorts we believe virtually every former and current Assos fan will find new love and appreciation for this premium grade Swiss cycling clothier.