Scorching days ahead.
If your summer riding schedule includes regularly climbing through soaring temperatures under an unforgiving sun, Giordana's Sahara Men's Bib Shorts might make a significant difference in your ride quality. Just as riding in the cold asks more of your body, exerting yourself in the heat requires your body to work harder to cool itself down, and kit that's designed to help it will only improve your ability to maintain the intensity you would in more moderate temperatures.
Giordana tailored the aptly-named Sahara's entire construction to high temperatures and climbing, so the proprietary fabric that it's crafted with, inspired by the swim and undergarment industry, is featherweight and incredibly breathable. Giordana arranges it in a V-shape around the core and a U-shape in the back to get the most out of its moisture-wicking properties while maintaining structural stability. The legs are shaped according to the brand's 1on1 system, which involves constructing each leg from one piece of fabric that's secured by a single seam along the outer leg. Less seaming creates a lighter, more flexible piece. The fabric Giordana adds to the ends of the legs could hardly be referred to as leg grippers, as the elastic feels and behaves more like barely-there mesh. It's flexible and incredibly breathable while still preventing the leg hems from wandering while you're in the middle of a grueling climb.
New for this year, Giordana changed the fit of its bib straps to better accommodate cyclists in a standing position, so the fit of the Sahara will feel as natural in the saddle as it does while you're waiting in line for an espresso and a pastry post-ride. Giordana achieved this by allowing the front portion of the perforated bib straps to remain flexible, while the back portion stretches minimally. Not only do the bib straps help the Sahara feel more comfortable while standing, they also stay in place on the bike, moving with you as you sit and stand to climb.
Also redesigned this year, the Sahara's Cirro S chamois takes on long-term comfort with a less is more approach, featuring a sculpted shape that integrates quietly with the rest of the short. The Cirro S still offers ample cushioning, just arranged more strategically, and it now boasts Giordana's Copa Mondiale, a small but significant portion of recessed padding included to cushion and support the male anatomy while in a riding position.
- Item #GIO003N
- Q & A
As good or better than Castelli bibs
- Familiarity: I've used it several times
- Fit: True to size
- Size Bought: Medium
I have been wearing size medium Castelli jerseys & bibs for about 15 yrs, and picked up size Medium for these as well. They fit the same as Castelli, the Sahara straps are a bit tight like the Castelli Endurance v2, but the chamois feels more naturally contoured. Special note on the inseam length, as they're longer than Castelli; I can feel them hitting the back of my knees while standing, then they fit perfect once I start to ride. As a matter of fact, after about 5 min on the bike, the bibs feel like they're not even there. The bottom of the leg openings grip softly yet with slight bit of compression, and the one piece fabric truly shines compared to the multi-panel designs. They do breath well for warm weather as advertised, however, I wouldn't recommend them if you're riding below 68F degrees.
If I was to nitpick, just like the Castellis I've worn over the yrs, you can find a small loose thread somewhere along the stitches. The Saharas do have fewer stitches than Castelli, thanks to fewer panels used; I don't know how durable they'll be after a couple seasons of wear and machine washing, as I've only had them for a couple of weeks.
Bottom line, if you're a loyal Castelli guy like me but want to try something similar in quality but from a different Italian brand, I'd recommend you give Giordana a try.
- Familiarity: I've used it several times
- Fit: Runs small
The new "Copa Mondiale" shape of the chamois does not provide adequate coverage and room to perform properly. I understand the idea of cooling airflow but a swift breeze around certain parts of my anatomy does not offset given the coarse and irritating surface of the fabric covering what is normally covered by a soft chamois in other bib shorts. More chamois coverage please.
Wanted to like it. Very disappointed.
- Fit: Runs small
- Size Bought: XXL
First let me say my first purchase of Giordana kit was the FormaRed Carbon winter jacket which I love for the really cold and rainy winter rides with their Roubaix winter cycling tights. Love the jacket and really like the tights in nasty weather. Like that it is a family owned and Italian made. Great quality. So when I read that they now have their own factory and had even better control I thought that was great. When I saw these bibs and the similar bibs in this new line they were promoting as from their new factory, I thought these will really rock or they might be a little odd. I hoped for the first. Now for the details some of it personal to put it in reference for my comments. I am 6 feet, 205 lbs., still have a little belly (have lost over thirty pounds). Don't have big legs (average) nor a huge arse (but a cyclist butt). My two "regular" cycling bibs are Craft and Mavic in a large and they are fit me very easily. For further reference to street clothes, in blue jeans I wear Gap 1969 "trim" and am about to go to a 34 because they are getting loose. With that said, the story moves on. So I order the Sahara in an XL to size up because it is Giordana. I bought the Roubaix cycling tights for last winter in a XXL because I was the aforementioned 30 pounds heavier. Fit me fine. I get the Sahara XL and try and put it on. Felt like a freaking small. I could not even get the bib shorts up to my crotch it was so tight. It was ridiculous. So me having a little bit of belly was not even a factor because my normal sized legs and unhuge rear prevented the shorts from even making it to my waist. So as much as I didn't want to order XXL (for 40 to 44 inch waist), I bit the bullet and did so. Why, because I really wanted this to work. So the XXL came and again I tried to put them on. Again WAY too tight and just didn't fell right at all. I could get them on but oh not comfortable at all. I was dismayed. The legs were also too long now. Spoke to my favorite guy at CC about it and he said try them on the bike and see if once on the bike things go differently. So with cautious optimism (but bringing my Craft shorts as a back up) I drove to my usual starting point in my car wearing the Sahara. As soon as I got on the bike it just felt bad, simply bad. I was very cognizant of the discomfort and it was not for me. Rode half a mile in them, couldn't stand it, went back to the car, changed in the back seat (and didn't get arrested doing so) and went back out wearing my Craft shorts which are getting long in the tooth from many hours in them. So back to CC they go. I don't know who these shorts are made for but my only thought is some stick leg cyclist who can just squeeze into an XXL! I am happy to report I bought I pair of the Trade Forte FormaRed Carbon bib shorts and rode them today for the first time. In an XL. LOVE THEM. Love the look, the fit, the chamois. That short just "disappears" when I am riding in them. Zero complaints and buying a second pair.