Funny how cycling gear gets me hot under the collar in a way that everyday clothing just doesn’t. Don’t get me wrong, I like a good Italian loafer of a pair of cashmere ear muffs as much as the next fella, but there’s just something about bike kit…
I suppose it’s the combo of form and function – a great looking bike shoe, if it serves you perfectly over 160km and many a year, is a thing from the Cycling Gods.
Which brings us to this filthy little pair of svelte, sleek, goddam sexy looking S-Works Torch shoes. Whatever you might think of the brand, I dare you to say they don’t look superfine. In a James I-Wanna-Kiss-Myself Brown kinda way.
I’m not a huge fan of Specialized per se, that whole Roubaix store palava was enough to tip me over the edge, but I was sponsored with their shoes and saddles some years ago and they were great, both shoe and seat were super comfy. As I’ve always said, the best shoe and saddle are ones you don’t need to think about on a long, hard ride: that’s the hallmark of perfect kit.
And hey, if it looks good, bonus.
“The S-Works Torch,” said someone at Specialized, “is the latest evolution of the winningest footwear in cycling. Using Body Geometry together with biomimicry, data science, and obsessive craftsmanship, we engineered a shoe so thoughtfully constructed that you’ll forget you’re wearing it.
“Leveraging data science, we refined every detail of the S-Works Torch’s upper for improved fit and performance. Guided by more than 100,000 foot scans from our RETÜL fit data [ 100,000? That musta stunk some… ], we recognised that both a standard and a wide carbon base plate would best serve the spectrum of human foot shapes. An internal I-Beam adds stiffness and strength, eliminating the need for additional bracing. The result is a 20-gram weight reduction, enhanced efficiency, and immediate power transfer.”
Sounds good, looks good too, and I’m thinking of getting a pair, but we’re talking £385 / €440 / $450, which is painful just to type…
Specialized say “The S-Works Torch is scientifically crafted to disappear on your feet and off the front – just like the cash in your wallet!”
(OK they didn’t say the last part but they really should have…)