If you are looking for a top-level, hot weather bibshort with the best balance of comfort, performance, and light weight, Castelli is excited to offer you the Superleggera Bib Short. The company has been pushing the envelope on lightweight shorts since 2011 but have butted up against the limits of compromising durability for ever lighter weight. The design team decided they needed a new approach.
They examined what the short really needs to do: it needs to hold the seat pad securely in place while otherwise adding as little weight or fabric as absolutely necessary (without being transparent, obviously), and it needs to last a real season of hard use. So the company engineered a brand-new fabric using a woven fibers rather than a knit. The combination of the fibers themselves and the textile build choice t shaves 30% in weight for the same level of support and non-transparency. The team then worked with the world's leading mill to construct a gradient fabric that becomes increasingly lighter the farther down the leg it extends, with the last part weighing a mere 90 g/m2 compared to normal short fabric, which weighs around 220 g/m2. This innovative approach to textile design and development ensured that Castelli would be able to keep this luxurious feeling bibshort at 141 grams (size Large).
This fabric, while being insanely light, maintains a decent durability along with excellent abrasion resistance, at least against the saddle. Like most high-end bibshort fabrics it won't hold up against pavement, but no wants to test this regardless. Design and fit is perfectly combined for proper anatomic alignment and support. The material feels weightless during pedaling and never bunches or restricts in the most aggressive position or while you impress with fast, powerful pedaling ergonomics. The short transitions to the bib upper in a similar fashion to the Free Aero Race design, but less fabric on the external obliques- again to limit heat and restriction. The bib straps borrow heavily from the Free Aero Race again with a minimalist stripe mesh bib design to minimize weight and keep you cool. A super light, comfortable and smoothly effective flat stretch woven leg gripper is used to keep everything in place.
The short portion carries the excellent Progetto X2 Air Seamless chamois pad. The anatomic design and 4-way stretch suits the cut and stretch of the short perfectly. The breathability from dedicated perforations within the edge padding dispel moisture and heat to keep your as fresh and dry as possible, while the soft, seamless top sheet stretches and moves with the skin. The soft microfiber also features a bacteriostatic treatment that helps to keep your skin healthy. The multi-density, variable thickness foam padding has been placed and sculpted for optimal comfort, while reducing bulk where it isn't required and under the sit bones perforated viscous inserts add an extra layer of protection. This pro-level chamois pad will carry and protect you all day long, and then again the next.
Is the Superleggera Bib Short right for you? Start with the temperatures you ride in during the heart of the season. Do you regularly ride when it's 90 or higher? Do you long for a superlight bibshort that will keep you as cool and dry as possible in such conditions? Do you place a premium on comfort and frictionless support from from your seat pad? If you answered yes to all of these, then that is also your answer to the first question. You can certainly pay much more and get far less of what you truly need.