The Assos Equipe RS bib shorts S9 are almost the complete package, offering a quality build with real attention to detail and a comfortable pad but the legs have the frustrating habit of riding up.
The Assos Equipe RS bib shorts S9 have paid special attention to to the shorts construction, aiming to keep the pad stable and in one place
The new range of S9 bib shorts replace the popular S7 short with a focus on the chassis rather than the pad.
The Swiss brand's aim has been to 'lock' the pad in place, finding that getting out the saddle, or shifting around in the seat can disrupt a rider's comfort. The S9 creation aims to tackle this with a more structured bib strap.
When testing these shorts, I found them to feel secure with particular support in the uppers which feel very much fixed in place and don't have the bagginess I've experienced elsewhere.
The straps are also nice and wide where they cross over your shoulders and spread their tension evenly, causing no discomfort. A high waist also offers good support and how the bibs are stitched to the lowers is particular nice.
As ever with Assos, the shorts are built with quality fabric and feel great against skin, with the fabric superbly soft to touch and with a great level of compression. It has a real high quality feel to it that doesn't rub or irritate no matter how long they're worn for.
The pad is also very good, although it's quite different to other bib shorts that I've worn. It's bigger than many competitors' chamois, and it includes the classic 'Assos codpiece', so it can't really be described as unobtrusive. It's also flatter and thinner that many other pads so that despite its larger size it doesn't feel bulky.
In its chamois, Assos has used its microshock foam with a 3D waffle texture, which is where a lot of the bulk comes from. This has proven itself to be comfortable in any position and has added perforations for cooling which I found to be effect.
Assos have eschewed the move to longer cut, which would be my only gripe with these shorts. The leg cuffs sit a good few inches above the knee, leaving exposed a bit more of my thigh than I'd like.
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