Pearl Izumi is not new to the triathlon scene and they know what a triathlete is looking for. The Pearl Izumi Tri Octane are light, stiff, and anatomically correct. Did I also mention looks great as well? The Tri Octane has a one piece Clarino Rovenica Upper with Direct Vent Technology that offers minimum weight and maximum breathability. Cooling and draining is no problem with these shoes. You will be paying top dollar for these shoes but the comfort, look, and “make sense” approach that Pearl Izumi took to design this shoes should command the higher price.
Looking to improve transition times? Here is a shoe you should try – Specialized’s S-Works Trivent Triathlon Cycling Shoe. It sets a new standard for quick transition with its BOA quick dial lacing system and folding heel cup, which opens in the back and allows you to slide your foot in with much more ease (a magnet keeps it closed and your foot in place afterwards). The carbon sole is comprised of FACT 12.0, the stiffest available in Specialized’s lineup. Their Body Geometry features ensure you have an efficient interface between your foot and shoe. Smooth internal lining means you can ride sock-less and still feel comfortable. Lightweight, tough and water-resistant.
Fly past the competition in Pearl Izumi’s latest Tri Fly IV Carbon Cycling Shoe. The lightest and most efficient cycling shoe from Pearl Izumi features a new P.R.O. 1:1 Power Plate, which is a pro grade uni-directional carbon for lightweight stiffness. A fully lined mesh upper and direct-vent technology provides comfort, cooling and drainage and anatomic support is provided by concave shaping with longitudinal arch support and dual density EVA insoles. Weighs 270g (size 43).
Specialized’s top of the line road shoe, the S-Works model, are for those wanting the very best. Their lightest and stiffest cycling shoe starts at $350, and it features a carbon sole using high modulus, unidirectional carbon fiber, BG+ high performance footbed to improve foot/knee alignment, Micromatrix water-resistant upper for comfort and a vented tongue for added breathability. Two independent dials optimizes closure, one in the ankle and heel and the other in the arch and forefoot. Cleat pattern fits Shimano, Look, Time and Speedplay.
If you’re one who prefers to race out of T2 with your bike shoes already mounted, give Lake’s new TX312 triathlon cycling shoe a try. The shoe opens from the back, which makes putting your foot in easier once you’re already on the bike. Its eSole® Custom Foot beds are created from a 3D foot imaging technology and gives you the option to interchange the modular arch and metatarsal pads for preferred height and comfort. It has a lightweight and stiff carbon fiber sole and NuFOAM™ breathable & wicking shell with Trek-Dry antimicrobial liner for fast drying breathability.
Sidi’s new T3.6 Triathlon cycling shoe is one of the fastest shoes in triathlon cycling. The vented sole is hand crafted in the same carbon facility the builds parts for Ducati and Ferrari. Incredibly stiff with vents to help drain water after wet transitions and those moments on the bike most aren’t comfortable talking about. The upper has a plush, brushed interior for sockless comfort and a large heel loop to aid in transition. And it’s not just for tri-seasons. The vents can be opened and closed for riding anytime.
Bontrager’s latest triathlon-specific cycling shoe, the RXL Hilo. The large heel loop makes it easier to pull them on during transition and it’s built with their lightweight Silver Series carbon sole. Two quick straps seal you in while the footbed is perforated for quick shoe dry and your feet airy. Oh, and get this. There’s a medial side rubber band anchor that allows you to set pre-mounted shoes in a horizontal position to help you get in easier, thus able to shave some precious seconds off your time.