Champion System Custom Cyclocross warm-up tights review

Midweight fleece tights with double zippers and custom design

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For cyclocross racers looking to stay warm while standing still in the starting corral, zip-up tights are a great solution. With a thick zipper on either leg, warm-up tights are not as comfortable or functional as standard tights for normal road riding. But just try peeling off normal tights in a ’cross starting corral once and you'll understand the appeal.

There are a couple of unique factors with Champion System's take on this design. For one, they are custom; as in, you can get them sublimated any way you like, as part of a custom clothing order of other items or on their own. Also, the zippers are backed with a fleece flap to keep the zippers off your skin.

The double zippers let you unzip from either top or bottom, although the zippers only come completely off at the top.

Champion system custom cyclocross warm-up tights: double zippers make getting them on and off easier: champion system custom cyclocross warm-up tights: double zippers make getting them on and off easier
Champion system custom cyclocross warm-up tights: double zippers make getting them on and off easier: champion system custom cyclocross warm-up tights: double zippers make getting them on and off easier

Grippers at the ankles keep things in place, and the elasticized waistband is functional enough.

The sublimated rear panel helps with what is otherwise a pretty plain cut.

Since this is a custom piece, varies based on quantities ordered. The US$104 is for 10 pieces, and that can include 9 of anything else Champion makes — bib shorts, jerseys, jackets, etc. It's really cost-prohibitive for a single item at $312, but for a team doing an order, the Champion System Custom Cyclocross warm-up tight is less expensive — as a fully custom piece — than the stock option from other companies.

Champion system custom cyclocross warm-up tights: the zip-off tights can be purchased in conjunction with a custom clothing order of other pieces: champion system custom cyclocross warm-up tights: the zip-off tights can be purchased in conjunction with a custom clothing order of other pieces
Champion system custom cyclocross warm-up tights: the zip-off tights can be purchased in conjunction with a custom clothing order of other pieces: champion system custom cyclocross warm-up tights: the zip-off tights can be purchased in conjunction with a custom clothing order of other pieces

Ben Delaney

US Editor-in-Chief
Ben has been writing about bikes since 2000, covering everything from the Tour de France to Asian manufacturing to kids' bikes. The former editor-in-chief of VeloNews, he began racing in college while getting a journalism degree at the University of New Mexico. Based in the cycling-crazed city of Boulder, Colorado, with his wife and two kids, Ben enjoys riding most every day.
  • Age: 40
  • Height: 183cm / 6'
  • Weight: 82kg / 180lb
  • Waist: 84cm / 33in
  • Chest: 99cm / 39in
  • Discipline: Road (paved or otherwise), cyclocross and sometimes mountain. His tri-curious phase seems to have passed, thankfully
  • Preferred Terrain: Quiet mountain roads leading to places unknown
  • Current Bikes: Scott Foil Team Issue, Specialized S-Works Tarmac, Priority Eight city bike... and a constant rotation of test bikes
  • Dream Bike: A BMC Teammachine SLR01 with disc brakes and clearance for 30mm tires (doesn't yet exist)
  • Beer of Choice: Saison Dupont
  • Location: Boulder, CO, USA
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