Fizik Link R3 Snake bib shorts

Bib shorts built to match your saddle shape? That's the thinking behind Fizik's new clothing range

We know Fizik chiefly for their saddles. Of course, they make some pretty darn good shoes too, as well as some tidy finishing kit and accessories, and now they also make cycling clothing. Bib shorts, to be precise.

On paper this seems strange, but in reality it makes a whole lot of sense for the Italian manufacturer to create bib shorts perfectly suited to its saddles and the riders that sit atop them. After all, it’s this interaction between seat and rear end that defines the bulk of ride comfort.

The shorts make use of the same Spine Concept that the Arione, Antares and Aliante saddles do, with the aim of categorising riders into Snake, Chameleon and Bull. We suppose it’s better than one, two, three. Essentially, Snake riders are defined as having high hip flexibility with no pelvic rotation, Bulls with low flexibility and high pelvic rotation, and Chameleons in between.

Here, we have the Snake-profiled R3 bibs, complete with a cut that allows for greater rider flexibility while also supporting the use of – ideally – the Snake-appropriate Arione saddle. It’s the first time we’ve seen bib shorts designed specifically with a saddle in mind so can be considered somewhat revolutionary.

The R3 designation follows a similar kind of categorisation as Fizik’s shoes do. The lower the number, the more premium they are, with the R1 topping the range. However, it’s a bit academic right now given that only the R1 and R3 exist, further confirming Fizik’s apparent allergy to the number two.

RCUK 100 2017 - Fizik Link R3 Snake bib shorts

Still, the R3s are high-spec in their own right, just like the R3 road shoes. The polyamide and elastane fabric construction is designed to offer greater performance compression and longevity, with panel seams kept to a minimum in both number and bulk for greater comfort over long rides.

That comfort is likely to be improved further by the specifically-shaped Snake chamois, ideally profiled for the naturally aggressive position Snake-riders adopt.

Fizik Link R3 Snake bib shorts

The overall no-fuss and lightweight construction leads to claims of a mere 189g weight in a medium. Meanwhile, the bib portion is seamless across the shoulders for extra comfort and wider pressure distribution, while Fizik have also gone to lengths to keep the grippers as low-profile as possible, with textured grips used instead of ribbing. This should lead to less chafing, and therefore greater comfort during long rides.

And, after all, comfort is what a synergistic pairing of bib short and saddle is all about, surely?



Selected for The RCUK 100 2017

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