Waterproof vs.Protective Bike Boots

You can ride in the rain too.

I ride all year round, admittedly I don’t ride anywhere near as much in the winter as I do in the summer, but I hate being cold! I’m also not afraid of riding in the rain. Generally speaking if it’s chucking it down with rain then the bike stays in the garage. But if it starts to rain when I am out, or if I have to be some where, then I try not to complain and get the bike out.

My requirements

Sidi Vertigo Corsa, Click here to view larger image (NaNkb)

The Sidi Vertigo Corsa

Oxtar T.C.S Sport, Click here to view larger image (NaNkb)

The Oxtar T.C.S Sport

I mentioned in a previous article (Ladies Bike Gear) that I have very specific requirements when it comes to bike boots. I ride a sports bike and therefore I want a boot that is protective and suitable for use on a track. I don’t think that is a particularly unreasonable request! And neither do the boot manufacturers with several good boots available depending on your budget and requirements. Including:

  • Alpinstars
    • SMX3
    • SMX Plus
  • Sidi
  • Vertigo Corsa
  • Vertigo
  • Oxtar
  • T.C.S Evo RX
  • T.C.S Sport

However, these are sports bike boots and as such are not waterproof. If you require waterproof boots, you had better look else where.
There is an even larger choice of waterproof boots than there is sports bike boots, so I wont list them here. However, when I was shopping around for boots, I keep getting told that the Sidi Evo Rain boots are very popular

So if there are lots of waterproof boots around, what’s the problem?

Apparently If you want a waterproof boot, you don’t require them to be protective. I guess they go on the assumption that if you are riding in the rain you wont be riding on the track. But surely, riding in the rain increases the risk of a low side (thanks to all the diesel dropped on the road by our friendly SUV owning school moms) so we need extra protection. Being protective and waterproof doesn’t have to be mutually exclusive! I know a couple of people that have two pairs of boots just to get around this problem! They have a protective pair for the track, and a waterproof pair for when they have to ride in the rain. But I don’t want to have to decide what pair of boots I am going to need before I leave home. Boots are bulky, heavy and a pain to transport. I want something that is both protective and waterproof.

So what options are there?

Sidi Evo Rain, Click here to view larger image (NaNkb)

The Sidi Evo Rain

There is a distinct lack of protective waterproof boots available. And there is even less of a choice if, like me, you want a ladies boot. To date, I have only come across two boots that fulfil my requirements 100%

  • Alpinestars SMX3 Gore-Tex
  • Oxtar T.C.S Sport Gore-Tex

Which, as the names suggest, are simply the sports boot with a Gore-Tex lining and a larger price tag. Thank you! Such a simple solution! However, both of these boots are quite expensive. If you get them in a shop, the RRP is somewhere in the region of £180. There are a couple of less expensive options that also provide good protection.

  • Alpinstars GPS 3 wp
  • Oxtar SS Performance
  • Sidi Evo Rain

These boots are all in the region of £130 - £150 RRP. But they don’t provide the protection that I would want on a track, so it’s the T.C.S Sport or the Alpinestars for me!

What options are there in a ladies boot?

Alpinestars GPS 3, Click here to view larger image (NaNkb)

The waterproof Alpinestars GPS 3

Not very many! I have yet to find a boot that is both protective and waterproof that comes in a ladies cut. That said, I have only found one boot that is protective and in a ladies cut. And that is the Alpinestars SM3 Stella. But you’ve guessed it, they don’t bother putting the Gore-Tex lining in this one! Oh no, girls cant possibly ride sports bikes and risk getting wet! It might spoil my makeup! If you just want a fashion boot that offers a little protection then they’re ten-a-penny.

What have I decided to get?

At the moment I am still looking as I haven’t been able to try on the Oxtar boot yet. Jocke is now on his second pair of SMX3 Gore-Tex and is very pleased with them. Probably because I’m female, the longer I wait the more indecisive I get over which boots I am going to get….. Watch this space.