Interbike 2012: Laces and (faux) Leather...

In other words, lets talk shoes. I can say, with at least a minimal amount of conviction, that back in the 1990s when everyone I knew was moving up to shoes with the new-fangled velcro straps and ratcheting mechanisms, I was one of the last to drop my lace-ups onto the dustbin. At first I was unconvinced that straps and ratcheting devices would provide the same feel of security and, at the same time, adjustability. I found it hard to believe that anything could replace the way laces would pull the two sides of the upper together to envelope my feet. In the end, though, I was won over, and have not looked back. Until now.

my first pair of really good cycling shoes were Vittoria's, so they occupy a prime spot in my memory. those alligator (or is it snake) skin one are fantastic. no shoe covers with those

The shoe manufacturers look poised to bring back the lace-ups. It is unlikely that we will see them replacing straps atop the market share heap, but the way that the likes of Vittoria and Giro are promoting them suggests that we may see them popping up on our local roads more frequently. We're not talking shoes that will only appeal to the C & V and retro crowds here,  but shoes with all the fit and sole enhancements that athletes would look for in a performance product, mixed together with some pure styling. If you are buying shoes this year, you should have little problem finding something you actually want, not just something you need.

Northwave was one company that did not seem to go in for the whole lace-up thing, that does not mean they didn't opt for some classic styling in their lineup. overall shape, rows of perforations, and color combinations as seen in these 20th anniversary issues point to a certain elegance

you may have read about the predominance of this color in the repertoire of the shoe manufactures in a post at Red Kite Prayer yesterday. well, Giro is another that seemed to be really pushing it at the show. there was row upon row of this same shoe, same color at their booth. luckily they made up for this offense in other areas...

don't worry, Giro still has plenty of straps, but their lace-up models grabbed my attention. some wild solid colors, some patterns, and some understated ones for guys like me

As with all these reviews from Interbike 2012, I have not received any prior compensation, nor promise of later compensation, from the above mentioned company, nor am I connected to them in any way. Views expressed are the result of my observations and subsequent research only.