New Gear: Rapha launches lightweight climber’s shoe

Dotted design of upper is nod to Tour de France polka-dot jersey

Shoes
Hallmark of the Climber’s Shoe is the mesh-backed synthetic leather upper with its dotted design.

Hallmark of the Climber’s Shoe is the mesh-backed synthetic leather upper with its dotted design.

Two years after venturing into the footwear arena with its Grand Tour shoes, high-end apparel maker Rapha is about to start selling its second set of road-specific kicks, the Climber’s Shoe. These $400 shoes will go on sale in North America starting this weekend. Initially only the white/grey model will be available, with black/pink and blue/white coming on-line at a yet-to-be-specified date.

As it did with the Grand Tour shoe, Rapha partnered with Giro, who’s done some of the heavy lifting in bringing these lightweight pedal mashers to life. Hallmark of the Climber’s Shoe is the mesh-backed synthetic leather upper with its dotted design, a nod to the polka-dot climber’s jersey of the Tour de France, and the once common practice of racers drilling holes in components in order to shed weight.

Beneath the foot is the same EC90 SLXII composite sole found on the Rapha Grand Tour shoes.

Beneath the foot is the same EC90 SLXII composite sole found on the Rapha Grand Tour shoes.

Of course, it’s also is claimed to increase breathability. The mesh construction is designed to allow perspiration to evaporate inside the shoe, while the perforations permit increased air circulation. The shoe is held in place by traditional hook-and-loop Velcro straps.

Beneath the foot is the same EC90 SLXII composite sole found on the Rapha Grand Tour shoes. Highlights include a low 6.5mm profile to minimize stack height for better pedal interface. There is also a replaceable heel protector. Inside the shoe is Giro’s ProLight SN footbeds and an antibacterial lining. Claimed weight for a size 42.5 is 215 grams. Sizes run 39-48 in whole and half-sizes, but there is no 47.5.

For more information, visit rapha.cc

About the author: Jason Sumner

An avid cyclist, Jason Sumner has been writing about two-wheeled pursuits of all kinds since 1999. He’s covered the Tour de France, the Olympic Games, and dozens of other international cycling events. He also likes to throw himself into the fray, penning first-person accounts of cycling adventures all over the globe. Sumner, who joined the RoadBikeReview.com / Mtbr.com staff in 2013, has also done extensive gear testing and is the author of the cycling guide book "75 Classic Rides: Colorado." When not writing or riding, the native Coloradoan can be found enjoying time with his wife Lisa and daughter Cora.


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