After four years of development and being written off by many consumers as vapor ware, the long awaited Kestrel clipless shoes from Five Ten are finally ready for production.
The shoe is intended to compete against the Specialized Rime and Giro Terraduro in the ultra hot Enduro race market and differentiates itself with it’s distinct styling, use of a BOA closure system for precise fit, and a mixture of Five Tens proven rubber sole compounds.
The shoe has a reinforced toe with a rubber bumper around the strike zone, which offers protection against impacts. The toe box itself is built from a perforated synthetic that is splash resistant but still breathable.
The sole borrows technologies from across the company’s line of shoes to create a product that has traction in hike-a-bike-scenarios and still offers near XC level performance.
To attain these results Five Ten used the ultra tacky Mi6 rubber found on their flat pedal shoes in the toe and heel region, in conjunction with their hardest C4 rubber compound at the center. This combination allows the shoes to have good perch when hiking, but keeps friction low around the cleat interface for ease of clipping. A full length carbon infused shank aids in power transfer.
For the first time, Five Ten will also be offering Women’s shoes that are designed specifically for the fairer sex. Rather than “pinking” an existing design, these shoes utilize a female specific last (shoe form) that is narrower in the toe and heel than the men’s model.
The shoes will be available in either canvas or leather, which will retail for $110 and $100 respectively.
The women’s shoe also receives a two toned sole that is non marking. Just one look at the linoleum floors in my kitchen is reason enough to be excited about the new rubber.
Previously called the Freerider Vxi, the model has been updated and renamed the Freeride Contact for this year.
Not much has changed from the original models released last year, but the Contact receives an updated outsole, and new uppers which provide a better wrap around the foot.
The shoe also utilize Five Ten’s grippiest Mi6 rubber compound.
In the past, Five Ten has had several different colors of their Spitfire and Dirtbag sneakers available, but this year they’ve simplified and updated the product line in order to offer just one super rad color scheme.
In addition to the admittedly cool color schemes, the shoes now utilize Five Ten’s Marathon sole. This rubber is their hardest, longest lasting compound, that is also non marking (inoleum kitchen floors rejoice!).