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Why We Like The SH-XC9 S-PHYRE Cycling Shoe
When we glance at the starting line of a World Cup cyclocross or cross-country race, we often notice the flashing silver or bright blue Shimano SH-XC9 on various rider's feet, eagerly waiting to clip in when the whistle blows and head to the front to string the field out. It's for good reason too, because if you've ever gotten a pair of these shoes in your hands, or better yet, on your feet, you'll experience that world-class fit, low weight, and efficiency that the pros count on to earn a paycheck. No doubt, these shoes are designed to help you pedal at your best to get you across the finish line faster, however it means nothing if your feet are in agony. Shimano shoes are perennial favorites here in the office and these XC9s receive some light updates since Shimano first launched its S-Phyre lineup—notably a more perforated upper that improves the fit and breathability, and then beefier armor at the toe box.
On the rear of the shoe, Shimano uses an external cup that covers the carbon sole and the back of the heel. This design supports the heel, preventing twisting and rolling, stabilizing it for more efficiency. Inside the shoe at the heel a cat tongue-like gripping fabric further bolsters the foothold, providing a solid foundation for dishing out the big watts at the race start and on the pedaling upstroke while trying to maintain traction on a slippery surface. Shimano reached out to the French rubber wizards at Michelin to create a grippy compound for the lugs for off-bike traction, and we find it works well for quick dismounts to hop a barrier and sprint back up to speed to remount our bikes. The ability to run toe spikes comes in handy too when we're scrambling up steep, loose, or muddy terrain.
- Shimano's premier cyclocross and XC race shoe
- Stiff, efficient carbon-reinforced sole for power transfer
- Increased perforation on the upper improves breathability and fit
- Dynalast construction aids with smoother, more efficient pedaling
- Dual-density Michelin rubber outsole blends grip and durability
- Dual BOA IP1 dial buckle provides a customizable fit
- Beefier toe armor improves durability and saves toes
- Finished with reinforced toe spike mounts
- Item #SHI00KB
4.5 based on 16 ratings
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