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review

Castelli Velocissimo bib shorts

8
£100.00

VERDICT:

8
10
Impressively comfortable bib shorts for all day riding, durability should justify the price in the long term too
Weight: 
190g

At road.cc every product is thoroughly tested for as long as it takes to get a proper insight into how well it works. Our reviewers are experienced cyclists that we trust to be objective. While we strive to ensure that opinions expressed are backed up by facts, reviews are by their nature an informed opinion, not a definitive verdict. We don't intentionally try to break anything (except locks) but we do try to look for weak points in any design. The overall score is not just an average of the other scores: it reflects both a product's function and value – with value determined by how a product compares with items of similar spec, quality, and price.

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Similar in appearance to Castelli's top level Free Aero bibs the Velocissimo shorts are the Italian outfit's mid-range offerings, if you can call the best part of a 100 quid mid range.

The Velocissimo is made from 80% Polyamide (nylon), 20% Elastane (Spandex) material that is claimed to have 'outstanding stretch and rebound properties'. While it's difficult to test this in the real world it has to be said the Velocissimo's are very comfortable. The material feels soft while you're wearing it having an almost rubberised sensation to it. And while the Lycra does feel thin so far it seems to be hard wearing - they still look good as new after the test miles. The Prosecco treatment (a hydrophollic layer that causes moisture droplets to spread out over a larger area to evaporate quicker) on the front layers helps keep you dry due to the high wicking properties.

The Kiss3 pad has variable thicknesses and density to keep numbness and chafing at bay while a 4mm thick layer of soft foam is added for additional comfort. Castelli reckon there is no need for chamois cream with this pad and after 4-5 hour rides I can vouch for this, I was just as comfortable at the end as I was at the beginning.

Single layer leg grippers work well while using minimum pressure to hold the shorts in place while the mesh bib straps are comfortable and stretch nicely to the shape of your body as you change position on the bike.

Colour wise its Castelli's usual range of garish/'look at me' to subtle black. As you can see from the pictures we have the blue/red and white version which makes a nice change from the uniform black of most shorts on the market.

According to Castelli's size guide I should be in a medium but from experience of their Italian sizing I've always gone up to large. These test shorts were XL and while I could have gone down a size they still fitted well.

Verdict

An impressive pair of bibshorts, comfortable for day long rides and enough colour choices to suit everybody. The price is steep though compared to other shorts I've ridden with similar comfort and specs but on the flip side other Castelli kit in my wardrobe lasts many years so they will probably pay you back in the long run. With jerseys and other apparel in the range to match the Velocissimo would make a great addition to anyone's cycling wardrobe.

If you're thinking of buying this product using a cashback deal why not use the road.cc Top Cashback page and get some top cashback while helping to support your favourite independent cycling website

road.cc test report

Make and model: Castelli Velocissimo bib shorts

Size tested: XL

Tell us what the product is for, and who it's aimed at. What do the manufacturers say about it? How does that compare to your own feelings about it?

The Velocissimo's are designed for fast riding and all day comfort. Comfort levels are very good without sacrificing feel or style.

Tell us some more about the technical aspects of the product?

The Kiss3 pad has been designed to not need the use of chamois cream due to its differing pad thickness and density for different areas of your anatomy

Rate the product for quality of construction:
 
8/10

The stitching is consistent and tidy throughout

Rate the product for performance:
 
8/10

Lightweight and comfortable no matter what position you are in, enough said

Rate the product for durability:
 
8/10

Everything still looks the same as when they were delivered after a lot of hours in the saddle plus plenty of washes

Rate the product for weight, if applicable:
 
8/10

190g and they do feel light when they are on

Rate the product for comfort, if applicable:
 
9/10

All day comfort even on bad road surfaces

Rate the product for value:
 
7/10

There are other shorts on the market as good for less money. You are paying for the brand/Italian styling here though

Tell us how the product performed overall when used for its designed purpose

Very well, no discomfort at all even when pushing hard on the nose of the saddle

Tell us what you particularly liked about the product

The comfort, styling and overall quality

Tell us what you particularly disliked about the product

The cost, a touch pricey compared to rivals

Did you enjoy using the product? Yes

Would you consider buying the product? Yes, already bought the jersey to match

Would you recommend the product to a friend? Yes

Overall rating: 8/10

About the tester

Age: 32  Height: 180cm  Weight: 78kg

I usually ride: Genesis Flyer  My best bike is: Ribble Gran Fondo

I've been riding for: 10-20 years  I ride: Every day  I would class myself as: Expert

I regularly do the following types of riding: time trialling, commuting, club rides, sportives, fixed/singlespeed,

 

As part of the tech team here at F-At Digital, senior product reviewer Stu spends the majority of his time writing in-depth reviews for road.cc, off-road.cc and ebiketips using the knowledge gained from testing over 1,500 pieces of kit (plus 100's of bikes) since starting out as a freelancer back in 2009. After first throwing his leg over a race bike back in 2000, Stu's ridden more than 170,000 miles on road, time-trial, track, and gravel bikes, and while he's put his racing days behind him, he still likes to smash the pedals rather than take things easy. With a background in design and engineering, he has an obsession with how things are developed and manufactured, has a borderline fetish for handbuilt metal frames and finds a rim braked road bike very aesthetically pleasing!

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2 comments

Avatar
Mat Brett | 12 years ago
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Don't know if you've seen but we have reviewed the Free Aeros
http://road.cc/content/review/18610-castelli-free-aero-bibshort

The Free Aeros have a Progetto X2 pad, which is a two-layer seatpad. Essentially, you have a thin layer of padding that sits next to your skin, then more padding underneath that in the areas where you need extra cushioning. They can move independently of one another a little. Basically, it's mega-comfy on long rides.

But then, Stuart rates the Kiss3 pad too... so not sure if that's much help!

Avatar
El_Jimbo_Grande | 12 years ago
0 likes

Any idea of how they compare with the slightly dearer Free Aero bib shorts?

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