Club, Endurance and Isle of Man racer, been riding bikes since 1970 something, got the bug sitting on the back of my dad’s 400 Four. First ride was an Italjet followed by RM80 and YZ125 dirt bikes, current bikes range from agricultural to exotic. Writing about bikes for four years.
Premium Racing, track days and fast road riding boots
I have been testing the Daytona Evo Voltex GTX for the last few months and I have covered at least 3000 miles. I have always wanted a pair of Daytona boots since the first time I saw them on the shelf. I was in a store buying my first set of leathers. At that time, I did not understand how anyone might pay more for a pair of boots than a leather suit. Typically, I went for a cheaper option that with hindsight at best only offered abrasion protection. Many years and many tumbles later I now appreciate that it’s not if you crash, it’s when you crash and I like to be prepared with the best equipment. Daytona offer both understated style and protection in abundance.
As soon as you pull your foot into the GTX and fasten the unique inner boot you can feel the difference, you feel like you have a custom boot off the peg. They’re amazingly comfortable, and offer reassuring protection against impacts.
What’s great? If you are a label fiend, then you need everyone to see the large Daytona logo on the front of your boot. The Daytona label is synonymous with being the Rolls Royce of boots.
Hand made in Germany. There are lots of positives about these boots, but the only place I can possibly start is with the price. At £689.99, I know there will need to be a lot of plus-points for anyone to consider splashing out such an amount on one pair of boots.
The boot is a dual construction boot consisting of an inner and outer boot. Inner shoe and outer shoe can be bought separately which is useful as you can replace elements without making the full outlay for a new pair after an accident, damage or wear and tear.
The outer shoe is made of tear proof, soft, hydrophobic cowhide, which is greased for adding extra water-repellent. There is an extra Velcro fastener to allow custom fit for different calf sizes. There is also a shinbone protector and padding. The outer boot has some elastic areas on the instep and the heel creating flexibility.
Walking in the GTX is the most comfortable I have experienced in any boot. There was no break in required at all, they were comfortable straight away and felt as if I had been wearing them for years the first time I used them. The stitching is all double stitched.
The gear change area has a cushioned abrasion resistant pad, this is effective and was makes gear changes more comfortable than cheaper competitors. The outer has an air intake but I have yet to feel the effect of this. You do not get the same airflow you might from a perforated boot, the trade-off is having a warmer boot which is great for the UK climate.
The thinner non slip race sole is thinner giving you maximum feel through the footpegs. For protection and deflection, the heel is rounded and carbon. The carbon protects you from rearsets that often penetrate the boot in a fall.
The zip is a curved zip, research shows that a curved zip is stronger and less likely to tear open in an impact, it is also less likely that it will open all the way and allow the boot to come off in the event of an accident.
The sole is tough as hell, but remains comfortable for riding and walking, and the ability to adjust the fit using Velcro straps on the inner boot and an adjuster at the calf means they can be worn over leathers, under textiles or with varying thicknesses of socks to suit the outside temperature.
For those that get their toes on the on the deck there are titanium toe sliders. There are two large plastic sliders on the outside edge of the boot to add more abrasion protection.
Inside the outer boot there is a plastic reinforced inner sole with a hot-dip galvanised steel inlay adding maximum strength and impact protection.
There are 3M-Scotchlite reflectors to attract attention in both day and low light.
The Inner Boot: The Inner shoe has a waterproof and breathable GORE-TEX® duratherm membrane. This means the boot wicks away sweat and moisture from inside the boot. Keeping your feet drier and more comfortable. That riding comfort is boosted by the use of a Gore-Tex membrane in the inner boot.
Safety is enhanced by the inner boot’s hard shell construction, made from a mix of tough aramidic fibre and plastic. Inside the shell there is shock-absorbing latex-padding in the calf, ankle and heel areas. The liner is designed to absorb sweat and wick away through the water resistant Gore- tex membrane.
The inner boot is anatomically formed with a spherical heel bed and climatic insole.
Fastening is really simple and is done using elasticated Velcro straps, its is really easy to fasten and easy to insert and remove your foot from the boot. There are no fiddly fasteners or chords.
The boots seem to have a slightly higher heel so they give a bit of lift. This can be useful for shorter riders that struggle a little with getting their feet on the ground.
The importers say Daytona boots last some riders for 15 years, and a full factory rebuild service is available once they’re showing signs of a hard life, at an extra cost to the rider. I have boots that I bought 20 years ago that are still going strong so no doubt the 15 years is a conservative estimate.
It’s hard to get away from the large outlay when there are highly protective and comfortable motorcycle boots available for a third of the price. They’re expensive, yes, but the outlay is reflected in the quality of the product for those that can afford it.
• Sizes: 36 - 49
• Colours: black, black-gunmetal, black-white, white-black-red, red-black-white