Rapha Women’s 100 + bibshorts

Bibshorts first.
Interesting discussion I seem to have started on twitter the other day after spending ages scanning for reviews of women’s bibshorts.
First – check the site where you are looking to buy from. Easy.
Second – check for reviews. Huh? What reviews?
Third – check Road.cc / Cycling Weekly / Total Women’s Cycling. Have those bibs been reviewed? Umm. No.

With this commuting lark, and riding longer on the weekends, I needed to look around for bibs. My mid range dhb were cracking to look at. A nice carbon black. Lovely to feel. Nice to wear. Until I’d spent 30 mins in the saddle. Then… It was uncomfortable… and the longer I rode the worse it got.
Sadly time has seen the demise of my Wiggle Magnificat bibs. The pad is too thin and the lycra a bit rubbed and pulled in places.
I love my Garmin Team Issue Castelli bibs (thanks Manuel For Speed!) – and can happily do a 3 hour ride in them.

So Castelli is once again top of my list. A quick search pulls up a few results of different prices for the Velocissima bibs. Only one has a review on them though. I decide to buy them even though I’m not sure of sizing.

The day after I buy them – I think and think. Where are people reviewing them? Are they reviewing them? Anyone a bit on the *cough* more solid side.

Thanks road.cc – one of your testers is quite similar to me ish! The only place weight was taken into account. Important if you aren’t a stick insect size 6/8/10!!

After gathering a few email addresses – I sent one out.
Not entirely sure I got the reply I was after. Didn’t think about wee stops or bib straps (prefer mine like normal ‘mens’ bibs thanks. No boob thongs/funny drop tails/ weird zips thanks!!). Was interested in who was reviewing them and where.

Thanks to Adele, Lois, Chris Garrison, Caroline, Nick Hussey, Hannah Bussey, Kristen etc. You’re replies were invaluable! I’ve got a bit of thinking to do – but likely you’ll all get an email again from me soon.

Rapha Women’s 100
Asked through work if I’d do this. Said yes. Then looked at the weather. Uh oh. Finding out on Friday morning that your rain jacket has split is not ideal. Especially when I was away at a wedding!
Slightly panicked email to work. Sorted. One Yellow Castelli Sotille Due jacket to be picked up from Sigma Sport at Hampton Wick on Saturday.
No shoe covers? No problem Elz! Cheers Jen!

A quick call into our Hampton Wick store, where I met some more of the staff. And received the routes by email. All set.

No Garmin. Mudguards?

My housemate lent me her Garmin. And Rhys fixed my mudguards and downloaded the routes for me.

All set? Yeah.

So. What to wear? My Specialized SL Pro bib tights should not be out until the winter. But they got an outing. Perfect choice. Short sleeved Crane merino baselayer. Sigma short sleeved jersey (Castelli). Castelli Sotille jacket. Spesh full finger gloves. Neoprene overshoes. Lights front and rear.

I’m the only person who had mudguards. But I’m so glad I did. It rained. And rained. Drizzled. Rained. Water, water everywhere. Wet. Wet. Wet.

As usual, the worse the weather got (as we went through Headley) the more I smiled. I didn’t get dropped out the back like I thought. And even passed a couple. I started shouting morning to all the other cyclists passing in the opposite direction. Cheerily. At the top of my voice. Ended up at the front as we rode up to the back of Box. Had a right laugh with Marjo (who headed back early to work at the store). A quick stop at Box. Did I mention the rain?


Then off again in torrential rain that didn’t ease up until we got to the top of Denbies. We’d already agreed to cut the ride short, and make our way back.

A couple of riders started getting tired and I dropped back with Lin (who works at HQ too) and we sheparded the last two back. In the drizzle.

Sadly at some point we lost touch with the others on Portsmouth Road. I found out later they had decided to go to Giro.

Absolutely loved it today. Felt a hell of a lot stronger than I thought I would be. Going down Box Hill in that downpour was something else! Absolutely EPIC!

Quite keen to do some more Saturday/Sunday routes. Watch this space…

That Sotille jacket was spot on. Bright enough to be seen. Kept me warm enough even with just a baselayer and a short sleeved jersey. And couple with the Spesh tights – the only thing that got cold were my feet. They were wet. From the rain.


Questions? Ask away!


One thought on “Rapha Women’s 100 + bibshorts

  1. My top shelf Castelli winter bibs are by far and away the most comfortable pair I own in every respect, but they come with a price tag to match… I was quite keen on the dhb Aeron range that I reviewed for Wheelsuckers recently (but not sure if they do a women’s version). You should write to some kit suppliers and see if you can blag some women’s kit to review!

    Glad you enjoyed the ride, all that commuting must be paying off with your fitness! 🙂


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