New Shoes: Pearl Izumi P.R.O. Leader II
For the past few months I’ve been wearing the new Pearl Izumi P.R.O. Leader II cycling shoes, and have had mixed feelings about them.
The fit and feel of the Pearl Izumi P.R.O Leader II cycling shoe is amazing. They hug the arch of your food providing great support. At the same time the toe box is slightly wider allowing wiggle room during your ride, which I personally like a lot. In other shoes I have found my toes feeling bunched after an hour or so because there isn’t this extra space.
A big plus for me was seeing Pearl Izumi stepping up their style game. I was never a fan of the design that Pearl decided to go with in their shoe line. I know that shouldn’t be as big an issue as comfort, but come on we all know there is a bit of vanity in cycling. These shoes have a very minimal design that I like, not to mention they reminded me of the Reebok Shawn Kemp’s that I had in the 90’s.
Now for the bad. The heel plate isn’t replaceable. This wouldn’t be an issue, but even after 4 rides and minimal walking the heel on my right foot is almost completely worn down already. Also, I’m not sure what the material is made of, but walking on certain concrete surfaces is as slick as ice and I almost fell a few times.
The negatives of the heel plate don’t outweigh the pro’s of the shoe for me. These are a great pair of cycling shoes for racing or long days in the saddle, I just wouldn’t make them your go-to adventure shoe. If you do find yourself walking in them be careful of your stride and the surface you are walking on.