MTB XC Shoe recommendations

Thats the road shoe… I haven’t seen anything about the XC903 yet.

You are right, but I saw somewhere that xc version is out or is about to get out

Xc5 are great for running for cyclocross as the flex in the heel and toe makes it easier to really dig in especially on hills. I hate running in super stiff carbon soles. Conversely the xc5 tends to cause more foot fatigue on long rides and a get a bit of toe hotsposting if im doing a lot of climbing and standing. I got about 10k miles out of my first pair and im on my second pair now. I actually busted through the soles of both shoes at the plate

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Ouch! Usually toe hotspotting is the cleat too far forward for a shoe like that or the cleat bolts are too long. The cleat plate should be supporting the pedal interface

THat’s just broke. That broke right at end of the metal cleat plate inside your shoe. If the shoe was made correctly, either your shoe lug / pedal base wasn’t right, you’re yanking your foot forward and up hard with the pedal not releasing, or you were running up a steep hill repeatedly with super flexible toes. Are your shoes too big? Are you running your cleat plate in the wrong set of holes, not supporting the midsole? Did your shoe get cut laterally by a grate or something - nylon is tough stuff?
I had the XC61 (“7 / 12” stiffness - fiberglass sole with a cf cover over it) from way back. They were super flexible north of the cleat and rigid behind the cleat. Never had any toe wear and tear nor durability issue - and I’m a pretty aggressive puller and power walker.

Here they shoe flexing just after the cleat

All the above haha. I abused the shit out of them racing cross and commuting in all conditions, I’m also not exactly light at 180lbs and built like a running back. Im surprised they last that long. They also seemed to get softer over time so this was probably a progressive failure. Was still super happy with them, enough to buy a backup pair once they got discontinued in the lace version

They still shouldn’t fail like that. Over time, you’ll break the glassfibers down, but I suspect the issue was your cleat placement/cleat holes. Next time, favor the top set of holes to get more support under your forefoot. Maybe put one of those Specialized BG forefoot wedges in too.

I guess it depends from user to user. Because I had pretty decent experience with my pair. Been using it for some time now.

There’s no way to get the cleat to a midfoot position with the front holes, this is the same fit as my road cleats and my giro empires with a carbon sole with the same position that aren’t failing. It is what it is, the reinforcement is simply not extended very far back past the plate

I’ve had good luck over the years with Sidi shoes as well.
Only thing about them, is that if you need the clear a good ways back, they may not go far enough.

I also tried Lake. Ended up with the wide, think I should have gone normal.


RX8’s. Happy with them, fit is narrow but its lasted me 2 years and 15000k of abuse so far :slight_smile: I just got MT7 Gore Tex for xc during winter and hopefully they last me as long.

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