Royal Racing’s Heritage is a lightweight trail short that’s just as good for hot rides as it is for a trip to the pub. However, it could do with more zipped pockets, and the one that is zipped could be better placed.
The Heritage short is made of a fast-wicking and quick-drying four-way stretch fabric. Two hook and loop adjusters sit inside the waistband to tailor the fit to your waist.
You get two open pockets on either side, as you would with most casual shorts, plus a zipped pocket down by the hem of the left leg.
I’m a 32” waist and the fit of the medium was spot on: I’ve not even had to mess with the integrated adjusters. The legs are plenty long and baggy enough in cut, and the four-way stretch fabric means they never pull tight enough to restrict movement anyway. They’re comfortable enough I forget I’m wearing them, though luckily not so comfy I actually forget to put them on.
I’m a big fan of adjusters on the inside, rather than outside, of the shorts. This way the Velcro can't catch on jerseys or other loose clothing, again aiding maneuverability.
The Heritage shorts are really light and make for an excellent summer choice. They’re impressively cool in hot weather, but you'll want something more heavy duty if you're expecting to get particularly mucky. Also, there’s no DWR coating, so while they dry quickly they often need to as they easily soak through.
The only real downside of the Heritage shorts is that the main pockets aren’t zipped, and the one that is isn’t in the best of spots for safe and comfortable storage. While open pockets are great for casual use, they're obviously not that secure.
Put anything heavy in the zipped pocket and it flaps about every time you put the power down, while the outside of the thigh/knee is likely to take a hit in almost any crash. A pocket higher up and perhaps around the back (like the phone pocket on Madison’s 4-Season DWR shorts) would be of far more use.
If you’re looking for a lightweight pair of shorts to keep you supremely comfy in the summer – and ride with your things in a pack – the Royal Racing Heritage Shorts are excellent. They're well-made, stylish, cool in the heat and very comfortable indeed.
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