15 years ago when you were riding your Diamond Back mountain bike wearing your Vans tennis shoes did you ever think there would be mountain bike specific shoes and even more so that there would be so many to choose from? Well it's happened and of course that means you have to figure out which shoes will work the best for you. At least you have us to test on pair for you!
This is where the Freerider Pro shoes come into play. They have the same sticky "S1 dotty" sole as the regular Freerider shoes but are lighter and less bulky. Of course this will mean a little less protection but if you need full on downhill shoes for your XC ride you are doing something wrong!
The Freerider Pro shoes still have good protection with a four layer toe box with impact resistant foam but they are lower cut than the regular Freeriders giving you less coverage around your ankle and heel. The upper section of the shoe is a synthetic weather resistant material. They also have a removable molded sock liner so you can see which way is more comfortable to you and if you are a total weight weenie you can save a few grams by taking them out.
Speaking of weight we compared the Freerider Pro to the regular Freerider in a size 10 an here is what we came up with. For the pro a single shoe weighed in at 374g or 748g for the pair with the sock liners included.
The standard Freeriders clocked in at 458g each or 916g for the pair for a size 10. Well maybe subtract a few grams for the built in dirt that was still on them!
When first putting on the Freerider Pro shoes they felt a little snug but loosening up the laces helped quite a bit. Of course just like with any other shoe they need to be broken in and loosened up. After a few rides and a couple of hike-a-bikes they started feeling pretty good. You can feel the weight difference when walking around in them more than you can while riding with them but you still do notice it a little.
Of course the grip was great but part of that is from fresh soles compared to the very used ones they replaced. Five Ten has always been known for their grippy soles so we expected it to be great. Keep in mind that the pedals have a lot to do with it as well and we were using DRM Vault pedals which have a good bite as well.
If you are one for keeping your stuff clean, the Freerider Pro shoes clean up pretty easily because of their smooth surface. Believe it or not we found that White Lightning bike cleaner works great to clean up your shoes! Just spray on a little and use a rag and they look like new again. Overall the shoes are working great and we feel they will perform well for many rides to come.