The Specialized Comp Road Shoe, falling right in the middle of the Specialized range, we put this shoe to the test across a range of disciplines to see if it could hold it’s own against the majority of race shoes. The Californian giants have made this shoe to target cyclists that want to get from A to B with a bit of pace, whilst looking good at the same time. Designed with lots of the features we can see in some of the S-works shoes, except now retailing at only £74.99 on Cyclestore.co.uk, we were eager to give the Comp a try.
When it comes to items that’ll help you get through the season, a solid pair of shoes is right up near the top of the list. As well as improving your aesthetics on the bike, the shoes directly transfer the power from the legs, through to the pedals. Performance in this aspect is high on the list of priorities when it comes to picking a shoe. And your long rides will fly by much easier if your shoes fit you properly.
Specialized’s description of the shoe comes as follows: ‘The Comp Road Shoes offer the security and adjustability of our high-end Boa® road shoes plus they’re paired with a nylon sole and Body Geometry technology to deliver best-in-class performance and value’. But would the hold up when it comes to the actual riding?
The Comp road shoe comes with two colour options. Both a black & a red option can now complement your bike or the rest of your outfit while you’re out on the roads. The shoes come with Specialized Bodygeometry Sl Footbeds. This lets riders with any foot composition jump straight in. The already built in arch support and forefoot varus wedge supports the inside of the foot keeping the knees aligned and the glutes engaged.
The injection-molded nylon composite sole is engineered to be moderately stiff yet light: Stiffness Index 6.0. And a lightweight Boa s2-SV dial allows you to adjust the fit on the fly, keeping the shoe hugging your foot for longer.
A synthetic upper comes with some venting to stop your feet over heating on hot days, yet reflective heel elements help with visibility on winter rides or dark commutes. This is the same across both designs of the shoe.
Out of the Box:
The Specialized Comp Road Shoes come in a standard specialized box, & don’t quite hold the same sleek aesthetic of the S-works 6 or the Specialized Expert shoes that fall above them in the Specialized shoe heirachy. That being said they still hold their own and despite the two velcro straps they still look the part.
The Comp Road shoes fit the foot nicely and have a bit more give than the higher end shoes. They slide on to the foot nicely, you’ll feel like Cinderella finding her perfect match. This comfortable fit has clearly been designed well by Specialized, if it’s not going to be at the top end of performance, it at least better feel good on the foot! Fitting all major road pedals you can slip it straight on & ride from the box in no time at all.
With the ventilation appearing as somewhat of an after thought, we were interested to see how this felt out on the roads, nonetheless it doesn’t detract from the aesthetic of the shoe. The BOA dial helps keep the shoe close to the top of the foot without any pinch points.
On to the Bike:
The sole of the Specialized Comp Road shoe doesn’t quite have the same crisp feeling as the shoes above it. There’s a tiny degree of flex at the very top end of the power output. It’s clear that there are a few watts wasted as you try to kick away on the bike. But as far as the rest of the performance goes, the shoe felt very responsive & comfortable.
The ventilation was somewhat lacking as we expected, but it’s not every day we get to enjoy the sunny roads of the Algarve or the South of France. The ventilation works fine in British conditions & doesn’t leave your foot feeling either damp or cold.
The durability of the shoe is good. The materials aren’t quite up to the same standard as most top end race shoes, although both colours hold well in grittier road conditions. They’re easy to clean and there’s barely any stretch through the materials in the shoe. We wouldn’t expect the materials to be at the top of the market for a mid range budget, but they’re certainly adequate.
If you’re a sportive rider or commuter, the Specialized Comp shoes would make a fantastic companion out on the roads. They lack some of the top end features that the better shoes in the range come complete with. But they have the right amount of juice to get you round any challenging course. They look the part, are easy to maintain and offer great flexibility out on the road, and for £74.99, i don’t know what you’re waiting for!