Say Aloha to the lightweight lace-up, perfect for those huge off-road rides.

XC riders pretend to be at peak mindfulness whilst pedaling along on some quaint rural gravel roads, but they are gram counters, like all cyclist.

Specialized knows this. And its newest shoe, is aimed at off-road riders who want something light with a simple securing mechanism.

Read more: the best mountain bike shoes – winning footwear for flats and clipless

A premium off-road lace-up

The result is the Specialized S-Works Recon lace-up. This is a twin of the S-Works Recon, which launched in updated form late last year.

You get a very light, but stiff, carbon-fibre sole, that promises to convert all that leg power to cadence, instead of flexing and wasting your effort at the pedal contact point.’

Lightweight and stiff carbon-fibre cycling shoes can be uncompromising to ride in. Specialized has added a 1.5mm rise to the insole, which prevents pronation.

 One very wild colourway

Functional but also fashionable, the S-Works Recon lace-up has four colourways. You can go for a subdued and hardwearing olive or black, although there is also white – for those who don’t fear the chore of shoe cleaning.

Our favourite? Without doubt the Aloha design, with its tropical colours and patterns. This is definitely a gravel riding shoe that will get you noticed, when stopping for coffee and cake, at any village eatery.

The question is why are laces making a comeback? Isn’t it better to have a sophisticated cycling shoe that uses Velcro straps or those trick Boa dials to adjust fit? Not necessarily.

An easy fit – and walking grip, when you need it

Laces are durable. If you break a Boa dial or those Velcro straps starts delaminating, it can an expensive fix. Laces? Affordably replaceable. And they also have the benefit of allowing riders to get the their fit tension perfect, far easier, than with straps or dials.

But the biggest benefit of laces? They are light. And that is how Specialized manage to make their latest S-Works Recon weight only 280g.

With the SlipNot tread underfoot and a reinforced toe-box, these S-Works Recon lace-up shoes are entirely capable of some light hike-a-bike portages.

Specialized has priced the S-Works Recon lace-up at £300, with three of the colourways available now, and white, becoming an option toward the end of September.