Heel lift is the last thing you want in any shoe. To combat
this, the heel cup (Specialized called it PadLock) was redesigned
on the previous shoes and resulted in a very secure fit. For the
new shoes, it has been redesigned again.
It's now a little softer for more comfort in this area, but it
still manages to provide that locked in feeling just without any
compromise in comfort at all. Critically, it still offers that real
sense that your heel isn't going to lift out of the shoe when
you're really laying down the power.
Specialized says it responded to feedback from pros like Peter
Sagan for more stiffness, so it redesigned the carbon sole, moving
material to the centre section to reduced flex without adding any
weight. The stiffness rating has increased from 13 to 15.
Is the difference noticeable? At this time of year, with winter
layers on, it's hard to really detect any massive increase in
stiffness. We even chucked in a few playful sprints and big gear
climbs to see if we can feel any difference, but to be honest we
were hard-pushed to feel that increased stiffness.
Maybe in the summer months when the layers come off and race
season starts we'll appreciate that change more. We do appreciate
that fact the weight hasn't gone up for that extra stiffness.
Setting the shoes up is easy. There's the same 3-bolt cleat
drilling with generous markings for accurately lining up both
cleats perfectly. You get Specialized's own insoles which are
available with a range of arch support, and it's now offering its
own custom insoles, but of course, at Bespoke Cycling we can create
customised insoles for you to extract as much comfort as possible
out of your new shoes.
First impressions then are very good. The comfort has been
improved, both around the heel and toe box and across the top of
the shoe. Getting in and out is much easier, and the machined dials
are lovely to use. They're stiffer as well, but for most people,
it's the improved fit and comfort that is going to be most
appealing and reasons to upgrade.
We'll update this first ride as we log more miles in the new
S-Works 7 shoes.
BUY THE S-WORKS 7 ROAD SHOES FROM BESPOKE, WITH FREE UK
And check out the
Special Edition LTD colourway - available while stocks last...
We have them in stock in a range of sizes, but once they're gone,