A while back I went through my first impressions of these shorts. I’ve had a couple of months on the saddle with them since, so here’s the skinny.
Tester: I’m 5’10”, 150 pounds. These shorts were ridden on Turnbull Canyon, Carbon Canyon, and the Fullerton Loop.
Fit: This is what makes or breaks a short. As I’ve stated before, I’m particular to lycra mainly due to the often-superior chamois pads. My main shorts were a pair of Canari Matrix Lyte but I’d tend to grab these instead as they made my rides consistently more comfortable. Hoss could have easily gone with a lesser pad and really pushed the board short feature but they opted for the higher quality chamois. Good call.
Front closure setup
The front zips up and has two loop holes on either side for the drawstring. This was a God-send as far as I was concerned. Normal board shorts will have a velcro strip and I used to run into emergencies while trying to undo the troublesome closure in a “have-to-do-#1-in-a-hurry” situation. With these it’s just down with the zipper….Ahhhhh. I’ve cursed at many a stubborn board shorts for being too difficult, but never these.
Rear tightening straps
Once you’ve got them on, fine-tuning the fit is made easy by velcro pull straps on either side. Just pull outward to tighten the shorts, then attach the straps along the top of the short and you’re set! The straps are essentially a smaller, lightweight version of the Ponderosa’s system. The problem with the Ponderosa’s is that the excess straps tend to curl up at the ends. The same thing happened with these, but to a much lesser extent. Just be sure you size yourself right and the strap-curl should be minimal.
The combination of the front closure and the sizing straps make plumber’s crack obsolete. Another bad baggy short trait crushed by the Stallion!
The length of the Stallions was perfect for me. While standing, they extend just below my kneecap for a look that’s stylish but avoids the above-the-knee Magnum P.I. look. While riding they never caught on my knees. The one downside to this short, as with any baggy, is the crotch. While it is relatively tight against the body, I’d occasionally get it caught on the back of my seat. This would only happen when I was hopping back on the bike though. My safety never felt compromised, even going through steep and technical terrain and the silky feel of the shorts helps to let them slide past the saddle. I also run a really long seatpost(habit picked up from cross country) and sport a WTB Laser V saddle(longer for downhill riding) which probably didn’t help.
Stallions on a cold ride
Function: Hoss lists the shorts as having 4 pockets but they actually have 5. Bonus pocket! There is a skinnier pocket on the left(velcro closure) along with a larger, zippered pocket. Then two medium-sized zippered pockets on the right and a velcro closure rear pocket on the right cheek. The zippers are lightweight and I never had any problems with them getting caught or not closing correctly. I always used the large left pocket to store my camera for easy access on the trails. More aggressive riders probably won’t want to put their camera at risk but it’s there if you need it.
I rode these shorts on nothing but 12+ mile rides and, quite frankly, I’d forget about them only because I never had an issues. Always a sure sign of a great product. The shorts have a silky, lightweight feel to them while still maintaining some durability. Granted, I never had a serious crash in them but after a couple minor spills they have no rips or runs. If you’re a looking for a protective short look elsewhere. These seem to be more of a short for the minimalist who prefers baggies over lycra. The material makes brushing/patting off dirt really easy too. Pat pat…and you’re ready to go grab some lunch or walk around the store.
Verdict: This is a wonderful, ridiculously light short. Previously I’d prefer lycra any day, but I find myself grabbing these for the ride more often than not now. The material feels really soft and comforting against the skin. They also seem to be just the right width in the legs. I never had them ride-up on a windy downhill(no one wants to see white thighs) and they were loose enough to maneuver in any direction without constricting leg movement.
How are they as a board short you ask? Excellent. The solid color is understated and the shorts fit me better than any of my other 5 pair of board shorts. Plus they never get that starchy, stiff feel that my other shorts have after a swim. Never had to worry about coming up for a naked breath of air either(thank you sizing straps)!!
The Stallions were surprisingly versatile in different weather conditions. On warmer rides they are absolutely phenomenal at wicking away any and all moisture. It’s dries extraordinarily fast like a board short should. Plus the removable liner, in essence, turns the Stallion into two short. Though I doubt anyone would want to wear the liner alone, you can wear them lounging around the house or on an epic. On colder rides I thought they’d be too thin but I never felt any chill or coldness in my thighs. I should note the coldest ride I had them on was in the low 40s. Still, I was impressed considering the material.
I definitely felt like the Stallion was a lycra wearer’s baggy. It has all the benefits of lycra (lightweight, breathable, great chamois), but stays stylish thanks to it’s board short good looks. In the Stallion, Hoss found a way to make a form-fitting short that’s at home on long, demanding rides as it is at the pool or around town. Mrsp is $59.95 for the Stallions. Multiply that by two if you’re buying a pair of baggies and board shorts…or just get these!