Week in Tech: New shoes from Sidi and Fizik, and titanium…drinking straws?
Here’s your Week in Tech — all of the gear news you need, none of the marketing gibberish you don’t want.
Sidi turns 60, releases the Sixty
In honor of its 60th birthday, Sidi has created a shoe worthy of the celebration: the Sixty. Sidi claims the Sixty is it’s lightest shoe, though the brand did not divulge the she’s actual weight. It features a new lighter heel cup, and dial system gets an upgrade, too: The new Tecno 4 dial system lifts away from the tongue to make it easier for you to get your foot in and out, and the dial itself has been updated to operate more smoothly — at a lower weight, of course. A velcro closure wraps on top of the toe to snug up the forefoot. The Sixty shoes also have replaceable sole vents that can be opened and closed to accommodate varying weather conditions, and they can also act as a drain for all you triathletes out there. The Sixty shoes cost $450 and are available in four color combinations. Look for the Sixty shoes at your local shop in February.
Fizik’s Powerstrap R2 Aeroweave shoes ventilate like a net
If you’re susceptible to the ol’ hotfoot on summer rides, Fizik has addressed your plight with the Powerstrap R2 Aeroweave shoes. The Aeroweave upper material is made from a woven fabric that blends thermoplastic polymer filaments with lightweight nylon fibers. The result is a resilient and supportive upper that allows for greater ventilation — so much so that you can see right through the material. This net-like upper wraps around your foot and lends plenty of stability to stand up to the demands of climbing and sprinting. To ensure a light system overall and to create a wraparound fit and feel, the R2 Aeroweaves also feature Fizik’s Powerstrap system, which is essentially a big Velcro strap that wraps around the foot. It’s like turning your foot into a really feathery burrito. According to Fizik, the shoes weigh 410 grams per pair, size 42.5. They cost $400.
Silca cuts down on waste with titanium drinking straws
Do you need a $30 titanium drinking straw? Of course not! But now you can have one because Silca has brought the reusable Titanium Straw Set to market. Okay, before you get a bee in your bonnet about silly, overpriced products, you should know that the straw’s purpose is twofold: First, it provides a reusable option for those of us who still love straws but hate the environmental cost; and second, it cuts down on waste in the Silca factory. That’s right, the straws themselves are made from tubing left over from the production of Silca’s titanium water bottle cages. Less waste=good. They are ultrasonically cleaned at the factory (though you should still clean them when you buy them) and they come in cool rainbow colors resulting from anodization. Each straw is aesthetically unique.
Zwift leaves the pavement and gets rowdy on MTB and CX bikes
Zwift isn’t just for the skinny tire crowd anymore. Now Zwift offers training plans and bikes for mountain bikers and cyclocross/gravel riders. The training plans are tailored to the type of riding mountain bikers and cyclocross riders do, rather than retrofitting road-oriented training plans to these disciplines. The Dirt Destroyer program, for example, caters to mountain bikers by recreating the repeated surges that help increase anaerobic capacity and pedal torque. (Think short, punchy, technical climbs.) The Pebble Pounder is an entry-level companion to the already existing Gravel Grinder program. The Pebble Pounder is the perfect platform for road riders making the leap into gravel who want to get a sense of what gravel nuances feel like. Both programs include a host of new bikes to lend more authenticity to the virtual ride.