Altura's Airstream is another comfortable mitt, largely because there's a thick gel pad over the ulnar nerve area. There are two more pads - at the base of the fingers and thumb - that feel a bit like the Adiprene of the adiStar. It's a bit bulky but your hand can bend okay.
This mitt didn't really feel like an Assos product at all. Assos kit usually exudes quality, whereas this is merely okay.
If you want a mitt that offers retro roadie chic and traditional back-of-the-hand tan lines, it's got to be Rapha.
Despite the name, the Alturas aren't too baggy and are relatively short in length, with a mere 10in inseam. They're agood-looking cut and are available in three trail-friendly colour combinations. The material is lightweight and breathable, and there's the same attention to detail as with the three-quarter lengths at the waist, with two press-studs, belt loops and Velcro tabs for a comfortable fit, though it's slightly tight round the waist.
This range-heading model uses an ultra-thin carbon sole that bring the foot closer to the pedal axis and thus requires correspondingly short cleat screws. The screws supplied were a little long, though the distributor says they have now rectified this.
Considering you can spend £400 on a child trailer, the first thing you'd probably ask yourself is: what's missing? Well, the seats don't recline and they're not massively well padded, so if you're planning long hours with the kids in tow it's probably not the right choice.
The Ascents feature a shorter leg length and lower rise to give them a slim, modern look and summery flavour. They go easily from road to street, and the seamless crotch panel allows comfortable riding with or without padded shorts. The outer shorts are cut quite trim, which is great for road use, but they're a little tight across the backside.
Altura's 3/4s have a shorter cut than most, coming to just below the knees. They're a good touring option as they're light and dry quickly, and look good off the saddle too. Although there's no double-layer reinforcement, there is a mini gusseted crotch to prevent chaffing, and articulated knees.
This sealed unit is also part of the Mirage and Veloce groupsets and is largely made of steel, but has a very good long-term reliability record.
Campagnolo still make the best brakes in cycling, and the Xenon callipers are a welcome improvement to the ones we tested in 2002 in terms of stopping power. If you enjoy pushing your bike to the limit on descents, however, we'd advise you to fit aftermarket brake blocks to improve control.
While Shimano's Tiagra crankset gets the Hollowtech 2 treatment for 2007, Campagnolo sees fit to retain the tried and trusted but recalcitrant taper axle system on this crank.
Rapha have become synonymous with quality, style and price, so it's little surprise that the decidedly elegant Fixed Shorts ring in at a cool £105.