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The Club Ride Ventura shorts both look good and feel good, though they're more suited to women with slimmer thighs as the leg is quite narrow.
This was more noticeable when riding than off the bike – the fairly short leg length means it rides up to mid-thigh when pedalling, and on rides when I got a bit sweaty the hem did catch a little against the skin. This is a minor niggle, but it did make me wish either the hem was looser or the fabric stretchier. However, when I wore them over Lycra tights on a cooler day there were no issues as they glided over the smooth material.
The material is a very thin two-way stretch nylon with just 6% elastane. As Club Ride claims, it is indeed breathable, wicking and quick to dry. The woven construction makes it abrasion resistant – it doesn't snag on Velcro, which is a bonus.
The shorts are super-lightweight and roll up small, so ideal for popping in your panniers if you're touring for a while.
They're casual enough to wear around town, and certainly appeal for commuting. There's no need to worry about exposing your derrière thanks to the nicely contoured high-rise waist, and the one-piece gusset means no seams to irritate if you're wearing them without a liner. If you do use a liner short, there are internal loops with poppers to attach it to.
You can adjust the waist internally by buttoning the tabs to one of two buttons. While this is discreet and neat, sometimes I was aware of the buttons against my skin when wearing them without Lycra underneath.
Otherwise, there are two useful decent-sized front pockets with contrast-colour zip, and a reflective CR logo and reflective tab on the left leg, belying the company's American roots.
Overall, these are a flattering and comfortable pair of shorts if you're not averse to flashing a bit of thigh while pedalling. You can get them in sage green too (and light blue on the US website).
Flattering lightweight short that looks good especially off the bike, ideal for summer days
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road.cc test report
Make and model: Club Ride Ventura Women's Shorts
Size tested: Medium
Tell us what the product is for, and who it's aimed at. What do the manufacturers say about it? How does that compare to your own feelings about it?
Club Ride describes the Ventura as "the perfect mid-length trail to active lifestyle bottom". It fits the bill.
Tell us some more about the technical aspects of the product?
/ PowerWeave™ - lightweight, breathable, wicking, quick-drying fabric
/ 2-way stretch poly-blend fabric, 94% nylon 6% elastane
/ Seamless crotch gusset
/ Side waist adjustment system
/ Side zippered storage pocket
/ RideLight™ reflective accents
/ Inseam: 11"
Despite CR describing it as 'comfort fit' I'd say it was a slim fit as the legs are quite narrow.
I'm a small or medium in most clothes – the small fitted well so size down if you're between, unless you have particularly large thighs.
Comparable to similar shorts from likes of Madison, but you can find cheaper.
How easy is the product to care for? How did it respond to being washed?
Machine washable 30 degrees.
Tell us how the product performed overall when used for its designed purpose
Tell us what you particularly liked about the product
Flattering cut and light weight.
Tell us what you particularly disliked about the product
The internal buttons on waist tabs.
Did you enjoy using the product? Yes
Would you consider buying the product? Yes
Would you recommend the product to a friend? Yes
Use this box to explain your score
These are so very nearly an 8, but the fabric could do with being a bit more stretchy for pedalling, and the internal waist adjustment buttons can irritate.
About the tester
I usually ride: Marin Point Reyes 29er My best bike is: Giant Anthem X1
I've been riding for: 10-20 years I ride: Most days I would class myself as: Experienced
I regularly do the following types of riding: commuting, touring, club rides, mountain biking, audax