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Endura's GV500 Foyle Shorts are part of its new-for-2021 gravel and adventure range. They offer a slim cut, low weight and have a water repellent finish. They fit really well – avoiding the baggy off-road look – and work well both on and off the bike.
The Foyle shorts are made from a lightweight, stretchy woven fabric (95% nylon, 5% elastane) with a PFC-free non-toxic water repellent finish. I can't tell you how durable that water repellent finish is in the long run, but there are no signs of deterioration after a handful of washes.
Why Foyle? According to Endura, 'Foyle is derived from the self-proclaimed home of Scottish gravel Aberfoyle, now often referred to by those who frequent the network of trails as Gravelfoyle.'
There are a number of features that make these shorts work well in high temperatures. There are vertical zips mid thigh, about 15cm long, for ventilation (and if you're wearing Endura's Reiver bib shorts, they give access to the thigh pockets too).
The front hand pockets are partially made from mesh, and along the inside thigh there are six laser-cut holes for still more ventilation. You get the same arrangement of six holes in front of the pockets.
The waistband is also a mesh-like fabric, to help wick sweat away. All this, combined with the lightweight fabric, means the Foyles work better than most to keep sweat to a minimum.
These are just the right kind of slim fit, and stay easy enough to get on and off. They're secured by a zip and a couple of poppers, plus the waist is elasticated and you get hook-and-loop adjuster tabs on the sides. They also feature Endura's Clickfast tabs for securing its compatible liners.
This, combined with the eight horizontal silicone grippers on the back of the waistband, means these shorts stay where you want them.
While the pockets themselves are big enough to fit any size phone, the zipped openings are small – just 13cm. That is just a bit too small to get my hands in easily, and they're not unusually big; if you do have big hands, I can imagine this could be more than just an annoyance.
Overall though, my stats put me in Medium (84-89cm) according to Endura's size guide. A medium is what I'm reviewing here, and it fits me just right.
I used these shorts for a variety of riding types, from shopping to gravel rides to mountain biking. It's pretty obvious that they are not designed for the latter; there is no space for kneepads, and the fabric would not stand up to much abrasion from crashes.
For less adrenaline-fuelled riding, these work really well. They are slim-fitting enough not to worry about aero drag, the ventilation works better than other shorts I've used, and the adjustment tabs and silicone grippers keep them where you want them.
Nevertheless, I'm not entirely converted – personally I'm sticking with bib shorts for gravel. But for touring, non-kneepad mounting biking and going to the shops, these are now my favourite shorts.
At £79.99, these are not the cheapest shorts you can find. Endura's own Hummvee Short II is £20 cheaper at £59.99 and comes with a liner, while Gore Wear's Passion Shorts are £69.99 and similar to the Foyles.
Endura's GV500 Foyle Shorts are a pleasure to wear on or off the bike. They don't move around when riding, they fit well and there's no flapping. You can get cheaper shorts, but I don't think the price is outrageous – though if you've got big hands, you might not find them quite so pleasing.
Really good ventilated, slim-fitting shorts let down by small pocket openings
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road.cc test report
Make and model: Endura GV500 Foyle Shorts
Size tested: Medium
Tell us what the product is for
Endura says: "Slim cut shorts designed to work perfectly with our GV500 Reiver Bibshorts."
Tell us some more about the technical aspects of the product?
Super-stretch lightweight woven fabrics
PFC-Free, non-toxic durable water repellent finish
Mesh lined inner waistband, with printed silicon gripper to reduce slipping
Elasticated Velcro waistband adjuster tabs
Zipped front hand pockets with partial mesh bags for ventilation
Laser cut perforated vents
Zipped thigh openings that double up as vents and access to the aligned GV500 Reiver Bibshort cargo pockets
Clickfast liner compatible
You can spend less on decent shorts, but not a lot less. You can also spend more, of course.
How easy is the product to care for? How did it respond to being washed?
As usual, I just bunged these in the wash without taking much notice of the washing instructions. They still look fine.
Tell us how the product performed overall when used for its designed purpose
If you don't want the full, baggy mountainbiker look, then these work really well.
Tell us what you particularly liked about the product
The fit and the lightweight fabric.
Tell us what you particularly disliked about the product
The pockets are on the small side.
How does the price compare to that of similar products in the market, including ones recently tested on road.cc?
Endura's own Hummvee shorts are £20 cheaper and come with a liner, while Gore Wear's passion shorts are £69.99. On the other hand, Rapha's trail shorts are £110 and Castelli's Unlimited Baggy Shorts are £115.
Did you enjoy using the product? Yes
Would you consider buying the product? Probably not, but only because I don't normally wear casual shorts for gravel
Would you recommend the product to a friend? Yes
Use this box to explain your overall score
Endura's GV500 Foyle Shorts are a pleasure to wear on and off the bike. They don't move around when riding, they fit well and there's no flapping. You can get cheaper shorts, but I don't think the price is outrageous. If I could just get my hands in and out of the pockets a bit more easily, they'd score higher.
About the tester
I usually ride: All of them! My best bike is: Ribble Endurance SL disc
I've been riding for: Over 20 years I ride: Most days I would class myself as: Expert
I regularly do the following types of riding: cyclo cross, commuting, touring, club rides, mtb, Zwift