Ever since last year’s Interbike, I’ve heard nothing but buzz about Giro’s entry into the bike shoe market. The claims were they were light, stiff, and had the performances of Levi Leipheimer not only killing it on the road, but winning the Leadville 100 MTB race and setting a new course record in a pair of prototype Giro MTB shoes he received on the day of the event.
I’ve been a fan of Sidi shoes for over five years, working my way through their shoe line up until I settled on their top end road and MTB models for my bikes. They’re stiff, adjustable, and fit like a glove but if I had to find a fault it’d be that though my feet are a bit narrow, Sidi shoes are just a tad too narrow for me. With all the raves about Giro’s new line I decided to try out a pair this season when I got the chance.
After checking out their shoe line-up I decided on their top-end road shoe, the Prolight SLX, based mostly on good reviews of the semi-custom insoles. The shoes have a full carbon sole and worked great with my new Speedplay Zero pedal cleats. The insoles feature a choice of three arch heights to customize the fit, and after choosing the highest arch option, the shoe went from feeling just barely too big with the lowest arch option to fitting like a glove. The shoe features only velcro straps on top which was done either for weight or supposedly Leipheimer didn’t want a buckle to fail at a Grand Tour, and though I’m used to the micro-ratchet action of a conventional buckle, getting the top velcro buckle’s fit is pretty easy to do.
Overall, I’ve put a couple hundred miles on the shoes in the past couple weeks and I’ve had no foot pain or soreness of any kind, something I can’t say for my Sidi Ergo 2 shoes, which tend to hurt the outside of my foot after 2 hours in them. The part I’m most amazed by these Giro shoes is the simple heel, which offers no adjustments of any kind, fits my heel perfectly and there’s no danger of heel lift inside my shoes, even when sprinting. I haven’t given these shoes the true test, which would be a nice fast road race but I’m planning on taking them next week to my first race, and I’m looking forward to continued comfort and performance I’ve enjoyed since I got them.
I’d have to say after noticing a lot of tweets and blog posts from riders talking about these shoes, they’ve lived up to the hype for me and I’m loving this pair of shoes so much I plan to try out the MTB versions when cyclocross season hits this fall.