Simply the best
Editor’s Choice 2020
Every year we fall for the hype of a new brand entering the flat pedal shoe market, boasting of unrivalled grip from some exotic rubber blend. Only for it to lose its footing in real world testing compared to the venerable Five Ten Freerider Pro. The bottom line is there’s no better shoe for all round flat pedal riding if you value ultimate grip over fancy marketing.
Five Ten Freerider Pro shoe review
As the name suggests, the Five Ten Freerider Pro is a beefed-up version of the standard Freerider. These ‘Pro’ features adds to the price.
The Freerider Pro has been our go-to flat pedal shoe in the last 18 months, so it’s no surprise it’s remained unchanged in Five Ten’s latest line up. The Pro sits between the thinner-soled standard Freerider, and the heavier-duty Impact DH shoe. It’s got a stiffer mid sole than its slim outer shell suggests, but there’s still plenty pedal feel and connection to the bike once bedded in.
The upper uses the same fairly rigid fabric as the Kestrel Pro clip shoe, and is tough enough to resist cuts and abrasion and also retain its shape and support over time. Snug, padded ankle collars prevent heel lift and rubbing, and also stop dirt or stones getting inside too easily. There’s good impact absorption to stop feet tiring on the longest and roughest descents, and with extra abrasion-resistant scuff guards and a stitched on outer sole, overall durability is now totally sorted.
All this means zero qualms about the extra £25 over standard Freeriders, although some riders will still trade that model’s reduced protection and support for increased pedal feedback from its thinner mid sole.
So what about grip then? Well, it almost goes without saying that Five Ten’s dotted Stealth rubber sole offers class-leading hold, and there’s a properly locked-on feel that’s the most tenacious on test. This delivers maximum confidence against bouncing or twisting around, even in severe terrain on a shorter travel bike, and the tread design also works well hiking back up slippery trails or paths.
With outstanding grip, ease of cleaning, great foot support and sorted protection, this is still the best flat pedal shoe on the market for trail riding.