Free Protect Race Bib Short
We’ve all gone sideways at one point in our riding careers: whether from going too fast into a turn or sliding out on gravel, we bear the scars from road rash and still long after that torn-up pair of bibs. Castelli worked with pro riders like Froome to develop the Free Protect Race Bibshort, engineered to mitigate road rash on your kit and skin alike, while still performing and fitting as a top-tier bib.
Inspired by track racers’ layering two shorts to prevent road rash in the velodrome, Castelli constructs the Free Protect Race bib with two layers of fabric along the outside of the hip and thigh. The two layers of fabric act as a slip plane, moving past one another much more smoothly than does fabric on skin or, more dreadfully, skin on tarmac. This slip plane helps to literally save our shorts from the garbage bin, without the uncomfortable bulk of padding. The Vortex fabric outer layer is extremely durable and wear-resistant, while the interior panel is reinforced with Dyneema to protect it from ripping away from the main short panels. All of the protective advantage of the bib short is delightfully incognito, both in terms of breathability of the short and aesthetics.
Castelli makes sure the bib is as comfortable and high-performing as it is protective with their Progetto X2 Air insert and mesh bib upper. The Progetto X2 has a four-way stretch top later to make sure the chamois moves with you as you pedal, while perforations in the padding draw air through the insert to keep you cool. The bib upper features mesh straps, set wide at the hips to both stay in place better and follow the body’s movements in the saddle.
- A road and gravel short with incognito protection
- Double-layered fabric along hip and thigh mitigate road rash
- Ultralight bib construction keeps upper cool and comfortable
- Progetto X2 Air chamois ventilates and cushions for long rides