Alé has used its expertise from creating top-level kit for the pros to design a good value pair of entry-level bib shorts which do all the basics and do them well. The Women's Traguardo bib shorts are a perfect pair for short to medium length rides in spring and summer.
- Pros: Fit, design
- Cons: Chamois isn't the best for long rides
The pad, as you might expect from a pair of shorts at the more wallet-friendly end of the market, is fairly basic: 90kg/cm2 density padding ensures the necessary areas are well cushioned for a good couple of hours' riding. The 'wings' shape around your body, ensuring a comfortable fit and meaning the shorts feel less bulky than some when walking around at a café stop. However, on longer rides (2+ hours) I became less comfortable and did experience some chafing.
I am usually a size 8/10 and wore a small in these shorts which, according to Alé, equates to a UK 10. They did fit me but were reasonably tight so you will probably find you need to size up at least once.
They do offer a nice, comfortable fit and the bib straps provide the required support. They are slightly shorter in the leg than most of the shorts I own which I rather liked, especially on hot days.
Around the hem is what Alé calls its 'leg stability system'. As far as I can tell, all this means is that they have a wide 50mm leg cuff with no silicone gripper, but which sits in place perfectly well and is not at all restrictive. I did find it very comfortable and rather liked the lack of sticky silicone dots.
The mesh bib section is again quite basic, with the straps sitting around the outside of the chest and doing their job just fine. I didn't particularly notice the straps while riding and experienced no discomfort from the seams. The front of the shorts sat a little below my belly button, and while I tend to prefer a high waisted style, I didn't find this uncomfortable either.
The shorts are a predominantly black design with the option of pink or white detailing around the cuff. As you can see from the pics, I tested the pink, which gives them a nice splash of colour while still allowing me to pair them with a variety of different jerseys without clashing. The design and colour scheme mean they can be worn with the entire range of Alé jerseys too.
At £65, these offer great value for money – especially as they are currently discounted by several online retailers. As an entry-level pair, these are some of the best I've worn and for shorter to medium length rides I struggle to fault them. However, if you want to ride in comfort for longer, I would suggest taking a look at the 2XU Women's Sub Cycle Bib Shorts which, although a little more pricey, received a great review from Emma recently. Equally, keep an eye out for my review of the similarly priced dhb Blok Women's Bib Short coming shortly...
A comfortable and wallet-friendly pair of shorts that are great for everyday riding
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road.cc test report
Make and model: Ale Solid Traguardo Bibshort Womens
Size tested: Small
Tell us what the product is for
Alé says, "No matter what your body shape, comfort comes first with the Solid Traguardo Women's Bibshort. Made with a multi-panel Comfort Fit and Alé's Lycra Performer 220g/m2 fabric throughout, this bibshort gives excellent coverage and decent muscle support. The bib is an extremely elastic and breathable micro-mesh fabric, while the 5cm die-cut Leg Stability System keeps the shorts in place without restriction. Two colorways go with every jersey in Alé's collections!"
Tell us some more about the technical aspects of the product?
Security Reflex on the back
Body Mapping / Leg Stability System
4WH F Shammy
Really loved the fit and struggled to fault it.
I wore a small, which according to the size guide equates to a UK 10. As an 8/10 in most clothing, I definitely found that these came up small and would recommend sizing up.
Chamois did become less comfortable after 2-3 hours riding, but up until then I really enjoyed riding in these.
You could easily pay two or three times the price for very little more then these bib shorts offer, so at £65 they're definitely good value.
How easy is the product to care for? How did it respond to being washed?
Washed at 30 degrees with the rest of my kit and didn't stretch or deform. Very easy.
Tell us how the product performed overall when used for its designed purpose
Great as an entry-level pair of shorts with a nice fit and comfortable for at least two hours in the saddle.
Tell us what you particularly liked about the product
Fit and simple (but pink!) design.
Tell us what you particularly disliked about the product
Not a lot to fault.
Did you enjoy using the product? Yes
Would you consider buying the product? Yes
Would you recommend the product to a friend? Yes
Use this box to explain your overall score
A very good value pair of shorts which do the basics well, with a great fit. An especially good deal if you find them discounted online.
About the tester
I usually ride: Planet X London Road My best bike is: Bowman Palace:R
I've been riding for: 5-10 years I ride: Every day I would class myself as: Experienced
I regularly do the following types of riding: road racing, time trialling, commuting, club rides, track
Ashia is a Maths student at the University of Bath and has been riding and racing bikes for the past 6 years after a track taster session at her local velodrome had her hooked. Most weekends, she can be found out racing, be it track, road, criteriums, time trials, triathlons, or cyclocross. Whilst she is fiercely competitive and loves to race, she is still on the look out for anyone hiring a "full time cafe rider" when she graduates.