Gore Fusion SO bib tights+ £165

Mountain-bike-specific pad

BikeRadar score 4.5/5

The Fusion SOs are something special – if it weren’t for the price, they’d have scored five stars. Before you put them on, the impeccable construction has you emitting little signs of appreciation. Fabric is the standard-setting wind and water resistant Gore Windstopper. It’s very supple and thanks to pre-shaped knees and a contoured cut doesn’t feel bulky.

These have been designed as mountain biking tights that can be worn without protective baggies and there are abrasion resistant panels where you need them most. It’s a boon for winter riding where it’s not the falling off that necessarily destroys shorts but the grit that gets ground into the body of the fabric.

The inside is brushed and warm, but because it wicks so well we’ve been able to wear these through warmer conditions than we’d have guessed. The fit is very close (you'll appreciate the zip fly), and you do need to carefully smooth the legs in place, but once done it’s like a second skin. The pad is mountain bike specific and profiled to keep you chafe-free through the constant movement that more technical riding demands. We barely noticed it was there.

This article was originally published in What Mountain Bike

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