If you can swallow the price, you’ll get super-stylish and functional shorts that you’ll want to show off.

Rapha Brevet Bibshorts


$280 / £230, rapha.cc


  • Maximum style points
  • Comfortable shoulder straps
  • Handy thigh pocket


  • Softish seat padding
  • Bobbling on the seat outer
  • Premium pricing

Comfort: 3.5/5
Design: 5/5
Style: 5/5

Rapha bills its Brevet Bib Shorts as its long-distance comfort option, so I took them out on a few meandering missions through endless country lanes. I ended up wishing the roads were less deserted because just riding out clad in those Rapha design accents made me feel super stylish. See how they compare to the rest of the best cycling shorts.

Rapha Brevet Bibshorts features

As I explored gravel-strewn byways and back-country roads in these UPF50+ bibshorts, I often ended up going on unplanned epics. The strong suit of the Brevets is how comfortable the fabric is to wear, wicking effortlessly and never making me feel overheated, which helped me to relax over long distances.

There are three colours in the brevet range – black, navy and olive green. The olive colourway I wore gives a much more natural, less lycra-cyborg look than most bibshorts, but these bibs are dedicated to function as well as fashion. I initially took the bands of dots on the outside of the thighs to be a Damien Hurst-inspired design accent. However they also turned out to reflective for night-time visibility, as is the logo.

I appreciated the subtle but capacious slip pocket on one thigh, which allowed easy access to my smartphone when navigating (although technically it’s designed for ‘ride provisions’). You could easily get a few gels or energy bars in here too.

The uppers are wide for comfort but also cut out in the middle with a lighter fabric for breathability, which worked well as a combo. The fabric didn’t ride up my legs either, thanks to the silicon leg grippers.

Rapha Brevet Bibshorts performance

Cycling shorts should help you to ride in comfort for longer, and although the fabric of the Brevet does just that, there was one area that I felt let it down – the multi-layered chamois insert. Admittedly, I was riding a relatively ‘old school’ set up of 25mm tyres. But to me the foam felt a little soft, and I was starting to feel it after the 3-4 hour mark.

I suspect a slight tweak to the spec would make this the ultimate long-distance bibshort. But for now I’d use it more for those shorter, social spins where style, breathability and carrying capacity trump all-day comfort.

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