Unbound Gravel is known for its demanding nature. Challenging weather conditions, undulating terrain, a remote location, and the infamous flint rocks — it's a true test of strength and endurance for rider and bike alike. This year, I was in the midst of it all for the 352 long miles of the Unbound XL. It took me 28 hours of riding and often carrying my bike to reach the finish line in Emporia, Kansas.
We experienced thunderstorms and downpours –resulting in the worst-imaginable mud– as well as stifling heat on the vast, exposed plains. Comfort plays a crucial role when you're spending that much time in the saddle, especially in these varying conditions, and there was only one pair of bibs I trusted for the endeavor: the Velocio Luxe bibs.
The Velocio Luxe Bibs are, as the name –and price tag– indicate, plain luxurious. The bib short's soft feel comes from the "ultra-high gauge fabric" that's both compressive for muscle support yet impressively supple at the same time. The bib-shorts feature a three-panel design with minimal seams and a next-to-skin fit. It moves with you, ensuring there is no chafing or irritation. And –perhaps my favorite feature– the shorts sport seamless microfiber bib straps and leg grippers, meaning no sausage legs!
Completing the package are a comfortable, all-day chamois and, of course, Velocio's signature snap- or zipper-free pee-break design, which allows you to simply pull down your bibs when nature calls without having to remove your top.
I'm not surprised that these are Velocio's best-selling bibs because, for riders who spend long days in the saddle, few other options offer both comfort and performance to this degree.
Admittedly, they are costly, but for Black Friday through Cyber Monday you get 30% off by using the code BGCM2023 when you check out. They're still a bit of an investment, but in my nearly 15 years in the sport, they're among the bibs I've ever worn, and mine are in constant rotation. They can't come out of the laundry fast enough!
Pair them with:
At Unbound, I paired the Luxe bibs with Velocio's Ultralight Long Sleeve jersey in an effort to keep the sun off my skin. This understated jersey is made of a lightweight material blend of recycled polyester and elastane. Made for the sunniest of days, it offers plenty of breathability as well as UPF30 sun protection. Despite its minimal nature, the jersey still sports three full-sized pockets and one small zippered pocket. I quite like the plum color as well.
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