Shimano are introducing a new race shoe called the R320 which takes over at the top of the range from the R315 that we reviewed last year. Developed in conjunction with pro riders including Edvald Boasson-Hagen, it was first used at the Olympics. The new shoe has a wider cleat adjustment range than before and a new pedalling platform called Dynalast that Shimano reckon saves energy.
According to Shimano, their Dynalast technology reduces the amount of power you lose on the upstroke. They say, “In the development of Dynalast, the pedalling platform was consistently outperforming all shoes available in our test pool (our test pool included eight brands) by reducing the braking loss (the unwanted and unavoidable loss of power that occurs between the crank angles of 200° and 360°) up to 50% over the next closest shoes.”
So, what is Dynalast? Shimano say, "The toe-spring section of a cycling shoe plays a key role in supporting efficient pedalling. Too high causes increased tension in the plantar, calf and hamstring muscles. Too low, and you get a bowlegged, inefficient pedaling form.
"Extensive research by Shimano's R&D experts has produced a superiour shoe-last design with an optimezed toe-spring section that promotes a smoother, more energy-efficient upstroke. Dynalast helps reduce energy loss on long rides, letting you keep more in the tank for that final sprint to the line."
The R320s get a new sole that offers an extra 11mm of cleat adjustment – double the previous amount. The insoles are heat mouldable and you get an adjustable arch system – you can choose a high-mid or mid-low custom arch support.
Key features of the R315 that are retained include the use of Rovenica ultra-fine synthetic leather and open mesh for breathability.
The R320s will be available in both a normal fit and with an extra wide last, both at £299.99. Shimano are quoting a weight of 470g for a size 40. For more info go to www.madison.co.uk.
Mat has worked for loads of bike magazines over the past 20 years, and been editor of 220 Triathlon and Cycling Plus. He's been road.cc technical editor for seven years, testing bikes, fettling the latest kit, and trying out the most up-to-the-minute clothing. We send him off around the world to get all the news from launches and shows too. He has won his category in Ironman UK 70.3 and finished on the podium in both marathons he has run. Mat is a youthful 45-year-old Cambridge graduate who did a post-grad in magazine journalism, and he is a past winner of the Cycling Media Award for Specialist Online Writer.