Maybe I’m getting old (ha!), but I find myself more concerned with comfort and ease of use these days. And these TCX boots tick both those boxes.
Compared with a full-on race boot, the X-Cube half-boots are much comfier, easier to get on and off, and give decent protection from spills and the weather. I’ve had these just over a year now, done a few long-distance rides on them (including a mega-miles jaunt round France last summer) and they’ve been great. The waterproof lining has kept out a load of rain, they’re nice and warm, and cosset your feet on and off the bike. They also have a properly grippy outer sole, from Michelin, rather than the slippery soles used on many other bike boots… The insole has come loose on one of them, so I have to re-position it from time to time, but that aside, they’ve not missed a beat.
Of course, for ultimate protection on track or on a sporty ride, you’d want a longer boot to protect your shin and lower leg. Ditto for really bad winter weather - a full length boot over your calves will give extra warmth and waterproofing. But for day-to-day trips, urban commuting or moderate touring, these boots get a big thumbs-up.
Costs: £120. More info: www.tcxboots.com