It had been a while since I’d ridden my MTB. Throw in shoulder surgery rehabilitation and COVID, and you have exactly six months. Needless to say, I needed all the flare and sparkle a new pair of shoes could bring me. ‘This ain’t gonna be pretty’, I thought to myself as we ran the gauntlet that is South Auckland traffic, and escaped to Whakarewarewa, Rotorua. Pooch, hubby, bike, not to mention the new kicks – sorted!
With my head full of noise about how my shoulder was going to hold up, I didn’t need foot drama added to the mix – so I was literally comforted with the secure, snug fit when I first got into the shoes. These shoes gave me the support and responsiveness of a more rigid XC shoe, with the comfort you need when having to do a bit of hiker-bike. After a lot of time working from home in my Ugg boots, my feet were happy with a bit of cushion and support provided by the moulded Eva footbed.
We gave the pooch a bit of a run around before we headed out onto the trails, at the great dog park on Long Mile. Being out of my usual rhythm a bit, I had forgotten to bring dog walking shoes, so ended up walking the pooch pre-ride in my new MTB shoes. Now that’s one way to wear them in – no issues at all I must add – impressive!
By the time we headed out onto the trails it was still pretty fresh and my hands were still cold. This is where the Fastlace system came into its own; with minimal effort I was able to pull the laces tight with the pull cord and lock them into place, creating a super snug fit. The laces could then be easily tucked away behind the Velcro strap across my ankle. Like any good Rotorua day, the weather heated up pretty nicely out on the trails. This lace system allowed simple easing off of the tension as my feet got a bit warmer and needed a bit more space.
On a couple of techy parts on the trails, I lost my nerve a bit and needed to dismount and scoot myself and the bike down a tricky downhill section. I was really confident in the Ventana, they gave me great grip as I edged my way down the drop off (‘next time I’ll nail it!’). Like many other readers, I’m sure, I am pretty hard on my shoes – let’s blame it on our genes. Riding the trails that day, I felt confident in the durability of these shoes. It must be something to do with the Giro Sensor Rubber and Synchwire feature on the outer part of the shoe, which says: ‘Show me the roughest terrain – no matter what, I’ve got you’. These shoes tell me they will go the extra mile and more.
This shoe has that effortless flat kick look, can step up to the starting plate for a speed effort or could go all day - and the next - with minimal impact. What’s more, they can transition from the trails into the local Te Arawa Seafood store for some fresh scallops (shout out to Te Arawa Seafoods!) with ease.
Distributed by Worralls | RRP: $229
Reviewed by Philppa Friary