The Fizik Vento Ferox Carbon shoes are targeted for off-road racing. They have a carbon sole, tear resistant mesh upper and a BOA Fit System paired with an elasticated top strap for a speedy yet secure fit. They look nice enough to ride down a catwalk in, too.
- Easy on/off yet have a super secure fit
- Outer material is extremely durable
- Plenty of room in the toe box without appearing bulky
- They are expensive, even for a race shoe
- Feel as stiff as road shoes when walking around (hike-a-bike is not an option)
I’m not (currently) the target market for these shoes, as I don’t do much off-road racing. I don’t really race at all, but I do like to ride efficiently sometimes and that can be very much like racing in my experience. So I have tested these shoes both on rides where I’m on the limit, and also for riding long-distance/multi day. I do a lot of road riding but don’t use road pedals/cleats, so these have filled that gap for me as they are considerably stiffer than a standard mountain bike shoe.
I am wearing EUR 41, UK 7 ¼. For reference, I wear the following sizes in other brands:
Adidas/FiveTen EUR 41 ⅓, UK 7.5
Ride Concept EUR 40, UK 7
Specialized EUR 41, UK7
Bontrager EUR 41.5, UK 7.5
Salomon EUR 41 ⅓, UK 7.5
Merrell EUR 41.5, UK 7.5
I was confident in my size choice as I have previously tested a pair of Fizik Terra Artica GTX shoes, but it is worth noting that these do fit slightly different to the Terra Artica. It is marginal, but there is more room in the toe box on the Vento Ferox, and I am able to wear thicker socks with them. In the Terra Artica I am on the limit of size EUR 41, whereas I comfortably fit in these.
The BOA system and elasticated top strap are a great solution for creating a comfortable close fit. I imagine they would be ideal for a duathlete/triathlete too, as you can open the shoe out really wide to get your foot in, and it takes seconds to secure them. For me, this feature has proven to be a real treat on a recent bikepacking trip in France/Italy where the temperatures have exceeded 30°C. When stopping for lunch I can slip my shoes off to air without it being a faff.
The carbon sole is as stiff as you’d expect, which is great on the bike for stability and feeling like you’re getting every bit of power out of each pedal stroke. There’s no energy lost to flex, and they feel really supportive. The tread is quite chunky and for walking traction in sloppy conditions they have proven to be good. I have attempted some rocky hike-a-bike in them and found both the sole and upper materials far too stiff for this to be comfortable for a length of time. That said, if you’re on terrain that you need to carry a bike up, you probably wouldn’t choose these shoes. High power sports like cyclocross, however, these would be the ideal shoe.
There’s a decent range for cleat position, and I haven’t needed to use any shims with my Hope Union RC pedals or my Shimano XT. The shoe as a whole is a sleek, precise shape and size that leaves plenty of clearance at the cranks. They feel neat. They hold their shape, perform well in both wet cold conditions and dry hot days, as they’re breathable without being heavily perforated. When I got them wet, they dried extremely fast.
If you aren’t a really serious or competitive cyclist, are you going to spend £299.99 on a pair of cycling shoes? Possibly not. But if you can afford to, they’re the equivalent of owning a nice watch. A Casio will tell you the time, but there’s something both nice and permanent about having a Longines on your wrist. The Fizik Vento Ferox carbon shoes have been put through hell in the past two weeks as I’ve scrambled, pedalled and hiked my way over 36 Cols. 8 hour days call for durable kit, and I haven’t had much to complain about with these shoes. I lost a stud, I’ve scratch the heck out of the sole, but they consistently provide a supportive and comfortable fit.
|Vento Ferox Carbon shoes
|by Amanda for 2 months