SEVEN DAY CYCLIST
CYCLING, BUT NOT USUALLY RACING
LATEST UPDATE: MAY 30th
TENN GLOBAL EUROSPORT GC BIB SHORTS
209g Men's (Large as tested) £66
The Tenn Global Eurosport GC Men’s Bib Shorts are a mid-range, eight-panel design. On paper, at least, there are store branded models offering similar spec for less cash. However, five hundred, mixed terrain miles in, I’ve found their fit, cut and comfort hard to fault. Women's models are available, too.
Pros: Great fit, cut, pad density.
Cons: Nothing obvious, to date.
As I said in my opening paragraph, these are a classic, eight panel design, with the features and specification I’d expect from a contemporary bib short. Dark colours are a definite plus. If black’s not your thing, there are several others to choose from.
Eurosport logos and racing stripes are subtle and perhaps, less effective than the clever reflective technology, employed within the Ribble bib shorts. Nonetheless, this seems quite eye-catching around dusk and at a moderate 85rpm.
Polyamide/Spandex mixes also offer some defence against UV rays. Tenn says its 80/20% and were honest enough, not to cite a specific SPF rating. Frankly, some sunscreen and other sensible precautions, should be employed, when it’s blazing hot.
Compression panelling is another, fairly standard feature, especially at this end of the market. For the uninitiated, the concept supposedly reduces fatigue, accelerates recovery and some suggest, accelerates wicking. The 5cm wide bib straps are also a tightly woven mesh material.
Some designs can feel vice-like around the shoulders, which, predictably, becomes intrusive on day rides. Thankfully, these grace the shoulders and allow unrestricted movement, whether you’re cruising on the hoods, or alternating between drops and tri-bars, for example.
Flatlock seams run throughout and are another promising feature, preventing chafing/similar discomfort and of course, that unsightly branding, come time to strip off and hit the shower. Generous silicone leg grippers continue this tactile theme, preventing creep/gathering, while still providing good tenure to leg warmers during spring/late summer.
This is a 3D Italian cooolmax model, with silver anti-bacterial, which promises a clean, temperate, and hygienic combination. 15mm should be sufficient for most road biased riding. There’s a fine line between plush comfort and feeling as if you’re sat on a loaf of bread. True, price plays its part, but some densely padded designs can induce fetid crotches and precisely the chafing/rawness they’re supposed to eliminate.
These came up a little smaller than expected. Standing 1m81 and nudging 72 kilos, I’m medium by default. However, our large samples felt bespoke. Chances are, going a size bigger than usual wouldn’t present any nasty surprises. That said, I’d double check the size charts and whip out the tape measure, before adding to cart.
Overall, this translates in a super comfortable short, perfect for day rides. Regardless of saddle type, or positioning, I’ve remained comfortable and temperate in every respect.
Starting with traditional leather saddles, the texture allowed for some very natural, intuitive shuffling, without distracting (and, after 50 miles or so) tiring slide. This remained the case when switching to leather covered/synthetic coverings. The pad also proved perfect in every respect, moulding to my contours, so I could basically focus upon riding-the way it should be.
Smooth tarmac is in relatively short supply. 50-100miles of washboard surfaces, sweat and shuffling can lead to a numb butt, chafing and discomfort. Not a peep. Similarly, 70 miles along forest trails, dirt and unmade roads failed to leave any negative impressions either.
Though I’ve been keen to shower afterward, the cooolmax fabric has remained whiff free and generally socially acceptable. Talking of which, while they’re not cut particularly low up front, there’s plenty of give in the bibs, so roadside pit stops are relatively dignified.
Tested through July and August’s widely publicised heatwave, with the mercury regularly into the high 20s & low 30s, temperature regulation is pretty crucial. Paired with the Tenn GC men’s jersey, there was the expected clamminess around the lower back, given 20 minutes at 20-23mph.
Wicking kicks in and I’ve remained primarily and consistently dry, for the ride’s duration. Obviously jerseys with, ¾ or full length zippers and a gentle breeze will speed things up but I’ve never felt uncomfortably sticky even in these temperatures and wearing retro jerseys.
Several weeks and countless washes in, they still look and feel packet fresh, with no hint of bobbling, or similar damage. This, despite regular frisking from brambles and other generic foliage. In fact, there’s not been so much as a loose thread. Machine washing at 30/40 degrees, with minimal detergent is as taxing as care gets, really.
Tenn have really turned up the quality control dial with this range and it’s a notch higher than the otherwise extremely likeable and very competent Ribble Nuovo. It’s worth noting that some large superstores offer models with similar specification for a good deal less. However, while generally capable, there’s trade off in terms of detailing. Bottom line, I have no hesitation in recommending the Tenn GC, if you’re looking for a high performing bib short but without blowing too much cash.
Verdict: 4.25/5 Well executed mid-range bib shorts.
PUBLISHED SEPTEMBER 2018
BUILDER OF STEEL CYCLE FRAMES
Ryton On Dunsmore
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